Merseyside seeks culture funding for £11m Eureka! museum in Seacombe
Merseyside is looking to secure seven-figure culture funding to help build a new children’s attraction on the Wirral waterfront.
Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has submitted a bid for £4m from the Government’s Northern Cultural Regeneration Fund to go towards the £11m Eureka! museum at Seacombe Ferry Terminal.
The proposal will look to build on the success of Eureka! The National Children’s Museum in Halifax, West Yorkshire, by creating Eureka! Mersey.
The centre will aim to inspire young people to explore science, tech, engineering, maths and arts, with content reflecting sectors identified as key drivers for economic growth and prosperity in the City Region.
The ferry terminal site chosen will be transformed into over 23,000 sq ft of interactive exhibition space, along with workshops and a café, gift shop and adjoining outdoor science park.
Liverpool City Region LEP Chair Asif Hamid said: “The whole ethos behind the bid is create a place that is engaging, stimulating and fun for young people, helping to raise their skills, understanding and aspiration and equipping them for the jobs of the future.
“If the bid is successful, Eureka! Mersey will also bring a world class visitor attraction to the city region, stimulating regeneration in a key waterfront location and greatly enhance our tourism offering.”
Wirral Council Leader Cllr Phil Davies commented: “It is fantastic that the Eureka! proposal has been selected as the region’s bid.
“A world-class, family-friendly, innovative and incredibly successful attraction like Eureka! would be a welcome addition to the Mersey waterfront, in an area that has suffered systemic and long-term under-investment in national arts and cultural funding.”
He continued: “Eureka! would not only inspire children locally, but also attract visitors from across the North West and beyond, driving additional passenger traffic onto the Mersey Ferry and increasing visitor spend across the city region.
“As a demonstration of our unequivocal support for the proposal I have awarded Eureka! a business grant of £308k to support them to bring this world-class cultural attraction to our waterfront.”
Eureka! chief exec Leigh-Anne Stradeski said: “The Liverpool City Region is home to big names across maritime, manufacturing, life sciences and energy, and of course culture and arts. We hope these plans for Eureka! Mersey will help create a thriving children’s community of budding scientists, artists and engineers, using skills-based learning, discovery and play as the means of engagement.”
In total, 11 towns and cities from across the North have bid for a share of a new £15m fund, which will seek to create a lasting regional legacy on the back of the Great Exhibition of the North, taking place in Newcastle and Gateshead in the summer.
Merseytravel and Wirral Council will contribute funding to the Eureka! Mersey project, if the bid is successful when the winners are announced in March. The attraction would open its doors in 2020 or 2021.