Bad Science (Centre)

One of the things you find yourself doing as a parent is looking for new and exciting ways to be ripped off by visitor attractions. We’d originally planned to go to Edinburgh Zoo, a prime example of the genre (£14 per adult) but a too-early start put paid to that plan. So we went to Glasgow Science Centre instead.

When you visit attractions out of season, you expect the odd thing to be shut. In the case of the GSC that means the cafe, and the observation tower, and most of the main floor (they’re doing it up to put some sort of adventure playground in there). But you don’t expect rude ticket clerks, broken exhibits and a general air of not giving a shit.

For example, there are three wall-mounted exhibits that look like plasma balls, where the idea is that you touch the surface and all the sparks move. Two of the three were broken. There’s a camera system that shows how you’d look if you were a different race. The camera isn’t angled properly and the monitor’s gone wrong, so the first inch of the display isn’t visible. Various fan-powered exhibits’ fans weren’t working. And so on. The decor is tatty, the windows filthy, and the exhibit that summed it up for me was the tunnel that you can clap and/or shout into to get an echo. It was full of litter. Old litter, by the looks of it.

Yours for £7.25 per adult!

A smarter blogger than me would use this post as an analogy for the way in which society no longer values science, or something. I’ll just say that the GSC wants to inspire the next generation of scientists, but I fear it’s only going to inspire them to blow up tourist attractions.