THE National Railway Museum has announced fresh details of its plans for a £5 million new 'Wonderlab' gallery.

The York-based museum says it has commissioned Yorkshire artist Pippa Hale to create a headline installation for the family-friendly gallery, which will be constructed on the site of the museum’s existing Workshop and is due to open in spring 2023.

A spokesman said the artwork would feature a collection of large interactive blocks that would encourage visitors young and old to design, build and play together.

He said it would continue Hale’s interest in the relationships between play and creativity, seen at her interactive play environment ‘Play Rebellion’ which was previously installed at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead, but with an 'engineering twist.'

"The artwork will be produced in partnership with charity the Snappy Trust in York to ensure that the space can be enjoyed by young people of all abilities."

Pippa said the installation would have fixed and moveable parts that visitors of all ages could use to create their own structures.

"The new shapes are inspired by drawings, plans and photographs from the museum’s own archives in terms of form and colour," she said..

"The aim is to create a fun and sociable experience that encourages creative thinking, teamwork and risk taking for everyone.”

The spokesman said another 15 gallery exhibits had been commissioned from three suppliers including Unusual Projects based in Elvington.

"Children will be able to build a bridge, enter a wind tunnel and take part in experiments around the themes of power, motion and control."

He said Wonderlab was part of a £55.3m 'Vision 2025' development which would see the widespread transformation of galleries and buildings.