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Gagarin 50 June 1, 2011

Posted by Marie in Gagarin, Space travel.

There’s a little exhibition in Sale, near Manchester at the minute, called Gagarin50.

It celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of the first human spaceflight by Yuri Gagarin on 12th April 1961, and also his visit to Manchester and Trafford a few months later.

Although not a huge exhibition, it does tie in nicely with the commemorations which took place in April, and it did make me curious as to why he should choose to visit Manchester.

It turns out he came at the invitation of the Union of Foundry Workers (he had worked in a foundry himself when he was younger) and the lovely footage of him receiving a medal from them can be seen here, courtesy of the North West Film Archive.

Despite the Manchester rain, he seemed genuinely happy to be here.  Afterwards (and this is still very much in the era of the ‘Cold War’) he headed south to meet the Prime Minister.

The exhibition was due to finish this weekend, but has been extended until August, so if you are in the Manchester area and have an hour free, why not take a look.



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