Due to our Monsters of the Sea exhibition there is restricted access to some parts of the building and the Cloisters will be closed during this period.

900-year-old Cathedral to host Tim Peake’s Spacecraft

Tuesday 31 July

The spacecraft which transported Tim Peake, the UK’s first European Space Agency astronaut, to and from the International Space Station, will land at Peterborough Cathedral on Saturday 11th August and remain on show until Monday 5th November 2018.

The Soyuz TMA-19M capsule, complete with equipped interior and char marks on its outer body from its re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere, will be displayed along with its 25m diameter parachute and Tim Peake’s own Sokol KV-2 emergency spacesuit as part of a national tour presented by the Science Museum Group and global technology innovators Samsung.

Peterborough Cathedral won a national competition to be the sixth venue on the tour, during which the spacecraft travels to eight cities across the UK. It is the only non-museum venue on the tour and celebrates its 900th anniversary in 2018. The ancient building took 120 years to construct using the state-of-the-art technology of its day. It is also home to a memorial to one of the most prolific and respected amateur comet and nova hunters of all time, Peterborough-based George Alcock MBE.

The display of the iconic craft will be accompanied by Space Descent VR, presented by the Science Museum Group and supported by Samsung – a unique virtual reality adventure using Samsung Gear VR technology. Narrated by Tim Peake himself, Space Descent VR recreates the experience of making the incredible 250-mile journey back down to Earth from the International Space Station inside a Soyuz capsule.

The Cathedral will present a programme of space-themed activities during the exhibition, including a holiday club entitled ‘Be an Astronaut for a Day’ and a StarDome presented by Leicester’s National Space Centre. Museum of the Moon, a touring artwork by Luke Jerram, will also be on display during the Spacecraft’s showing, presented as part of Vivacity’s 'Without Walls' programme from 5th to 14th October.

To help visitors from further afield, National Express has in place a 20% discount on coach travel for those travelling to see the exhibition, while Park Inn by Radisson, which is within 450m of the cathedral, is offering special prices to Soyuz visitors (booked via the Cathedral website).

The Very Revd Chris Dalliston, Dean of Peterborough, said:

“This year, the Cathedral has been celebrating its 900th anniversary, and it seems appropriate that we are both looking back over its long history, but also, with this exhibition, catching a glimpse of what the future holds too. Science and religion offer us complimentary views of what it means to be human, and invite us to explore meaning and purpose as well as the mechanics of creation. We are proud to host the space capsule and hope that all who come will be able both to delight in human ingenuity, and also reflect on the mystery and love that lies at the heart the universe.”

Ian Blatchford, Director and Chief Executive of the Science Museum Group, said:

“It is rare to see the star objects in Britain’s great museum collections touring the length and breadth of the country. It is even rarer to see a spacecraft in a Cathedral. I am extremely pleased that thousands of people from all around the diocese of Peterborough will have the chance to see this extraordinary artefact of recent space history on their doorstep, and I cannot wait to see the Soyuz take the Cathedral’s 900th birthday celebrations out of this world when it arrives in August.”

Sam Grant, Chief Marketing Officer, Samsung Electronics UK & Ireland, said:

 “Samsung has always had a passion for sparking curiosity and life-long learning. As part of our mission to make the UK the most space-travelled nation in the world, we are proud to present this opportunity to view Tim Peake’s Spacecraft and experience Space Descent VR in an immersive lounge using Samsung Gear VR technology. We are also working with the Science Museum Group in their education outreach programme. With the help of the Tim Peake Space Descent VR Experience Tour Bus, over the next two years a unique training programme will be visiting schools across the UK to engage young people in STEM subjects.”

It is not only schools who will be able to step inside the Tim Peake Space Descent VR Experience Tour Bus, as it will also park up on Peterborough Cathedral Square on Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th August for members of the public to take a look.

Visitor information and details of special events, including the Space Descent VR experience and accompanying activities, can be found on the Cathedral website (charge and conditions apply to Space Descent VR, which is open to ages 13+ only).

Space Descent VR with Tim Peake and the presentation of Tim Peake’s Spacecraft have been made possible with support from Samsung and the generous co-operation of Tim Peake and the European Space Agency. The tour will be accompanied by an outreach programme to engage young people in schools with potential futures in STEM subjects.

  • The national tour of Tim Peake’s Spacecraft presented by Samsung and the Science Museum Group comes to Peterborough Cathedral from 11th August

  • Visitors can relive the descent from the International Space Station through a virtual reality experience

  • Peterborough Cathedral is one of the finest Norman cathedrals in Europe and is celebrating its 900th anniversary in 2018

Tim Peake’s Spacecraft
Events and activities

Click on the event title to find out more.

Museum of the Moon
at Peterborough Cathedral
From the evening of Friday 5 to Sunday 14 October

         Akademi – Sufi:Zen
         Friday 5 October – 6.30pm to 7.45pm – On the green in front of the Cathedral

         Music under the Moon
         Sunday 7 October and Sunday 14 October – 12.30pm
         Tuesday 9 October – 7.30pm

         Moonlit late night opening
         Monday 8 October – 7.00pm to 9.00pm
         Wednesday 10 October – 6.30pm to 9.00pm
         Thursday 11 October – 6.30pm to 9.00pm

Silent Disco under the Moon
Friday 12 October, 7.00pm to 9.00pm
Tickets £5 per person.

Peterborough’s Astronomer, George Alcock
in The Knights’ Chamber, Cathedral Visitor Centre
Tuesday 23 October, 7.30pm
Tickets £5 per person.

‘Life in Space’ talks
in The Knights’ Chamber, Cathedral Visitor Centre
Thursday 25 October, 10.00am, 11.00am, 1.00pm and 2.00pm
Tickets £5 per person.

in the StarDome inside the Cathedral
Friday 26 October, 10.00am, 10.30am, 11.00am, 11.50am, 12.20pm, 1.45pm, 2.15pm and 2.45pm
Tickets £5 per person

The Search for God: Can Science Help? A talk by the Revd Prof David Wilkinson
Thursday 1 November at 7.30pm
David Wilkinson is a cosmologist and theologian and Principal of St John's College Durham.
Free entry. Donations invited.

So Long, Soyuz!
Monday 5 November, at 7.00pm
A special event to say a fond farewell to Tim Peake's Spacecraft.
£6 per person.

The Soyuz TMA-19M descent module

  • Soyuz TMA-19M carried astronauts Yuri Malenchenko (Commander, Russia), Tim Kopra (Flight Engineer, USA) and Tim Peake (Flight Engineer, UK) to the International Space Station on 15 December 2015 and returned the same crew to Earth on 18 June 2016.

  • The crew was part of Expeditions 46 and 47 to the International Space Station.

  • The outer surfaces have been charred by temperatures of around 1,500 degrees Celsius experienced during atmospheric re-entry.

  • The module weights approximately 1.5 tonnes.

The Science Museum Group

The Science Museum Group is the world’s leading alliance of science museums, welcoming over five million visitors each year to five sites: the Science Museum in London; the National Railway Museum in York; the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester; the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford; and Locomotion in Shildon. More information can be found at group.sciencemuseum.org.uk.

Samsung Electronics Co Ltd

Samsung Electronics Co Ltd inspires the world and shapes the future with transformative ideas and technologies. The company is redefining the worlds of TVs, smartphones, wearable devices, tablets, cameras, digital appliances, medical equipment, network systems, and semiconductor and LED solutions. For the latest news please visit Samsung Newsroom at http://news.samsung.com

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