Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre,
University of Manchester

Enhancing visitor experiences to spark interest in space science

The brief

Owned by the University of Manchester, Jodrell Bank Observatory is a UNESCO World Heritage Site recognised for its internationally significant heritage, science and cultural impact. Playing a crucial role in transforming our understanding of the universe, Jodrell Bank is home to the Lovell Telescope which was completed in 1957 and is the world’s third-largest movable telescope.

Jodrell Bank is currently developing its First Light Project, a new space focused on the conservation and heritage of the site where visitors can learn more about the role of Jodrell Bank, its engineering, discoveries and the Lovell Telescope. Impression is engaged by the University of Manchester to create informative, engaging and directional graphics and signage to enhance visitor experiences.

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Client University of Manchester – Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre
Sector Education
Location Macclesfield, UK

What we did

External Signage

Internal Signage

Construction hoardings

Outdoor flags


Visual branding services


Impression enjoys an excellent relationship with the University of Manchester and has worked alongside the Jodrell Bank team for a number of years. The First Light Pavilion, a new building currently under construction by contractors Kier, will contain a gallery, education spaces and café and Impression will develop internal and external signage to suit the new space prior to opening.

Most recently, our team has supported the adaptation of the existing site to suit COVID-19 requirements as well as ensuring a safe and enjoyable visitor experience around the construction area. By working closely with Kier and the University, we have created impactful visual branding that reflects this exciting brand, enabling the Discovery Centre to stay open during construction and the pandemic.


With a brief that spanned the whole visitor journey through the Discovery Centre, Impression supported the client’s design team in the adaptation of artwork and creation of workable systems for highly visual, engaging and practical large-format graphics, directional signage and outreach products such as external flags, communicating that the Discovery Centre is not only ‘open for business’ but a must-see destination.

Making good use of the construction area, our hoardings feature artists’ impressions of the First Light Pavilion to help visitors visualise the finished building while serving a practical purpose in screening the site and protecting visitors from construction noise and traffic. A complete suite of COVID-19 internal and external signage protects visitors and our client’s team.


Impression’s Production Manager worked quickly to get approved designs into our production schedule. Understanding the need for the Discovery Centre to maximise visitor opportunities following its closure, we completed production in-house of all materials, including internal and external signage, hoardings, flags and COVID-19 products including floor vinyls and posters.

Tight timescales were met, and as always we quality-assured products throughout production to maintain our high Impression standards. The early Consult phase really benefited this project, creating a precise brief that enabled efficient production once the client’s reopening was underway.


Impression completed this project with professional on-site installation by our Installation Manager and team. With great knowledge of the site and supported by our thorough brief, installation was managed efficiently to get the site open in line with the client’s schedule.

Our safe working practices ensure that large-format graphics, floor vinyls and promotional products are installed to meet robust standards, undertaking all CSCS and RAM statements relevant to both construction areas as well as public spaces before installing materials which are durable to withstand heavy footfall and weather conditions.

Project gallery

Creating an exciting experience that engages and informs, Impression’s work will generate footfall and communicate this unique brand’s heritage, whilst protecting visitors during construction works.

Have a look at some more of our project images:

The University of Manchester’s Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre is a busy visitor attraction which welcomes over 180,000 people through its doors every year. Impression have supplied and installed a range of high quality signage, display artwork and engagement materials that have really helped us establish the Centre us as a must-see destination. We’ve enjoyed an excellent relationship with Impression over many years and their ideas have added so much value to the visitor experience at Jodrell Bank. We’re currently working with the team to ensure the site remains attractive and safe for visitors during construction works for our new First Light Pavilion.

Amy Bishop, University of Manchester

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