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As the lockdown begins to lift, find your happy place

Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre in Cheshire is one of the venues participating in National Lottery Open Week.

The National Lottery

3 min read Partner content

The weather is finally warming up, restrictions are easing and most of us are looking forward to some extremely well-deserved days out. 

A recent study from The National Lottery of 2,000 adults reveals that eight in 10 (81%) have missed their ‘happy place’ during lockdown, whilst just under half (48%) have developed a greater appreciation of the UK’s visitor attractions, cultural sites, history, and art in the wake of the pandemic. People are keen to get back to the places that they love with over half (57%) intending to visit their happy place at the earliest possible opportunity.

To say thank you to National Lottery players who raise £30 million every week for Good Causes, hundreds of National Lottery-funded venues across the UK are opening their doors to players or doing something special in acknowledgement of this support.

National Lottery Open Week, which runs from Saturday June 5 to Sunday June 13, is a chance to grab free entry or special offers right across the UK at all sorts of fascinating places - including the Eden Project, Wembley Stadium, Stonehenge, St Fagans National Museum of History, the Museum of Free Derry and the National Trust for Scotland’s Falkland Palace.

One of the places that’s taking part is Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre in Cheshire. National Lottery players who present a ticket or scratchcard during National Lottery Open Week can enjoy a free hot drink in The Planet Cafe.

History and cutting-edge research go hand in hand at Jodrell Bank, a place where visitors learn as much about the power of human ingenuity as they do about pulsars, quasars and other astronomical phenomena. 

The Observatory’s Lovell Telescope - a giant 76.2-metre dish - has been probing the depths of space since 1957. The structure has become a familiar landmark on the Cheshire Plain and the Observatory was made a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2019. 

Professor Teresa Anderson, Director of the Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre, said the telescope’s brilliant design has kept it at the forefront of research. She said, “The shape of the dish is a paraboloid and its simplicity has made it very, very useful. It’s a kind of phoenix structure that is constantly being updated and reborn with improvements in electronics.”

Visitors to the Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre learn the facility was built on Cheshire Plain instead of Manchester because interference from the city’s electric trams was disrupting the work of Sir Bernard Lovell, the scientist after whom the telescope is named.

Jodrell Bank is looking forward to telling its story in even more detail when the First Light Pavilion - a stunning building set to open in late 2021 or early 2022 - is completed. The Pavilion, which will house an exhibition gallery, education areas, a projection space and a new café, has been supported by £12.1 million made possible by National Lottery players. 

Professor Anderson said the ambitious First Light project would “absolutely not” have happened without National Lottery support. She said, “We’re so grateful and so aware of the great honour of it. It’s going to completely change how we welcome people to the site.”

To say thank you for the £30 million raised for Good Causes every week by players, The National Lottery is offering a ‘Ticket to Your Happy Place’, with free entry and special offers at participating National Lottery-funded venues across the UK as part of The National Lottery Open Week.

More information about which venues are participating in your area and how to access the offer can be found here.

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Connecting Communities

Connecting Communities is an initiative aimed at empowering and strengthening community ties across the UK. Launched in partnership with The National Lottery, it aims to promote dialogue and support Parliamentarians working to nurture a more connected society.

Find out more