England’s National Football Museum in Manchester opened in May 2012, in time for the 2012 Olympics when Manchester was one of the host cities. The National Football Museum’s previous home was in Preston, but its new central Manchester venue in the Urbis centre will enable it to expand to become the greatest collection of football memorabilia ever assembled in one place.
Spread across three floors, the museum's permanent collection amounts to over 140,000 items. Among the highlights are a shirt from the very first international match in 1872, Diego Maradona’s shirt from the infamous 1986 ‘Hand of God’ World Cup quarter-final match between England and Argentina, and the ball from England’s victorious 1966 World Cup Final.
In addition there are photos and artworks, and changing exhibitions. There is also a restaurant, a café and of course a souvenir shop. Entrance to the museum is free, and the only charges will be for some of the interactive activities.
The museum is based in the Urbis centre, in Cathedral Gardens, just east of Manchester Cathedral. It is also only about a 2-minute walk from Manchester’s Victoria Station - an excellent location. It’s about 3 miles from Manchester United’s Old Trafford stadium, and a little less to the Etihad Stadium, the home of Manchester City.
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