As the summer season reaches its peak with dozens looking to spend a day out in the sun, Grampian Transport Museum has timely joined a campaign to “lift the mood of the nation”.
After receiving support funding from Museums and Galleries Scotland, the award-winning museum decided to open its doors for all visitors and bring joy to “as many families as possible”.
The Alford-based tourist attraction is taking part in the national Get Into Summer campaign to offer families a “great day out” with free outdoor activities for people of all ages.
As well as extending its opening hours to seven days a week, GTM will be offering free access to the play area and the junior driving school until August 31.
An ‘excellent’ day out for the whole family
GTM curator Mike Ward said this was an “excellent” opportunity for families to enjoy what the museum has to offer during the summer holidays.
He said: “This is a national campaign to help lift the mood of the nation and GTM thrives on families enjoying all we have to offer, especially in our outdoor play area – having picnics and children taking their first steps in driving and road safety in our junior driving school.
“However, after such a difficult year we know that some families will find the normal cost of such activities hard to find and so when MGS offered us the funding to provide them free of charge, we jumped at the opportunity.
“It is an excellent initiative and we are glad to be working alongside Aberdeenshire Council to give as many families as possible a great day out this summer.”
With its realistic layout with road junctions, signs and traffic lights, the junior driving school gives children a “unique” opportunity to learn the basics of road safety and driving, and earn their own junior driving licence.
Families with kids aged four to eight can book a slot for a 20-minute lesson with one of the museum’s trainers online, while the play area and picnic tables are available at all times.
GTM gearing up for a busy summer season
The new initiative is just a small part of the activity-packed summer programme at the museum, which has been one of the most beloved visitors attractions in the north-east since the 1980s.
Having recently held a British Cars exhibition, GTM is now looking forward to the return of EV Expo in Alford.
The free event, which will be held on August 1, will gather electric vehicle owners and retailers for an “interesting day” of exploring the electrically powered transport revolution.
Mr Ward added: “We have been delighted to welcome so many visitors already this year and the feedback through TripAdvisor has been great to read.
“We are slowly and carefully expanding our offer, within all current guidelines, and are now able to welcome children back onto our ‘climb aboard’ exhibits and to offer our very popular ‘tablet tours’.
“There are fun quizzes every day and of course delicious refreshments in the very popular ‘Traveller’s Rest’ tearoom.
“We are looking forward to a summer when the museum is full of visitors of all ages thoroughly enjoying themselves, and we will welcome them all!”