First Light Pavilion Visitor’s Centre

Jodrell Bank in the north of England has over 50 years of intergalactic stories to reveal. 

As the world’s oldest existing radio astronomy observatory and site of some of the most ground breaking intergalactic discoveries since the dawn of the Space Age, the new First Light Pavilion cultural centre at Jodrell Bank will bring these stories to life for everyone from the most dedicated intergalactic enthusiasts to the more casual stargazers. 

We have designed the pavilion as a grassy mound rising from the landscape – an engineering feat in its own right and a perfect platform for the amateur astronomer. 

Inside the hill, visitors can immerse themselves in Jodrell Bank’s past discoveries and learn more about the Lovell Telescope, one of the world’s largest and most powerful telescopes. We worked closely with exhibition designers Casson Mann on the circular exhibition space and auditorium to celebrate the feats of the amazing scientists and engineers who have changed how we see the universe.


University of Manchester


Macclesfield, UK


In progress




Casson Mann

Design team

Julian Gitsham, Gary Collins, Adam Atraktzi

In July 2019 the Observatory was formally recognised by UNESCO’s international community as a site of Outstanding Universal Value.



Julian Gitsham


The First Light Pavilion project, Cheshire U.K., will bring people closer to science and astronomy on a global scale. The project is designed by HASSELL with exhibition design by @cassonmann and is part of the @jodrellbank Observatory, the forefront of astronomical research since the 1940s and has just been declared a @unesco World Heritage Site.



University of Manchester's First Light Pavilion Visitor's Centre, UK, will bring people closer to science and astronomy, opening up a world of possibilities for both stargazers and the next generation of aspiring scientists. #astronomy #stars #science #design #UK #Manchester


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