Police Museum, Manchester
Tucked away in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, the Greater Manchester Police Museum & Archives – or Police Museum, Manchester – is an interesting way to spend an hour or so during a day out in the city centre with the kids.
Blink and you’ll almost miss the distinctive historic police station sign hanging off the wall of the exterior in Newton Street, which runs parallel to Oldham Street.
Pass through the door, however, and you’ll be treated to a first hand glimpse of relics from policing’s past.
As well as items of uniform that the kids can try on and some examples of police vehicles through the ages, there’s a grisly haul of weapons used in some notorious criminal cases through the ages.
Some of them are particularly sinister, so try not to get any devious ideas! Some are quite recent too, with memories of the Strangeways prison riot among the exhibits.
Definitely worth a visit, towards the rear of the building, is the former police station front counter and cells, which provide a brief insight into some of the heavy handed treatment meted out to unfortunates in times past. You can also see the board where the names of visitors were chalked up long before this became a museum. The historic court room is also brilliantly preserved.
Interestingly, one mug shot looks a lot like a very famous politician. I wonder if any of David Cameron’s ancestors ever paid a visit?
Police Museum, Manchester: Opening times
The Police Museum, Manchester is free to enter but is only open on Tuesdays, or by appointment. It’s staffed by former police officers who will be only too happy to tell visitors about times past.
How to get to the Police Museum, Manchester
Greater Manchester Police Museum & Archives, 57A Newton Street, Manchester, M1 1ET.