Skip to main content Skip to accessibility
  Non-Javascript users can confirm they have successfully signed out of MyAccount by clicking here

Rochdale exhibit will open a whole new world to visitors

22 July 2021

Shadows of visitors examining scale model of Earth.

A stunning replica of planet Earth is coming to Rochdale borough later this year, along with a host of out of this world events and activities.

UK artist Luke Jerram's internationally renowned 'Gaia' installation will see a huge work of art depicting the Earth exhibited at Number One Riverside in Rochdale town centre from Saturday, 20 November 2021 until Christmas Eve, Friday, 24 December 2021.

Measuring 7 metres in diameter and created from detailed NASA imagery of the Earth's surface, it will provide the opportunity to see the planet on a big scale, floating in 3 dimensions. The name 'Gaia' comes from Greek mythology, meaning the personification of the earth.

Scale model of Earth in a large hall.

'Awe inspiring'

The exhibition is being staged in partnership with Rochdale Borough Council and Your Trust, supported financially by the Garfield Weston Foundation. The team are now planning a series of special events across the borough to accompany Gaia, themed around looking after our environment and its precious resources.

Councillor Sue Smith, cabinet member for communities and co-operation at Rochdale Borough Council said:

"This is very exciting, and as we saw with Dippy the dinosaur, Number One Riverside is a great exhibition space. Gaia is breath-taking, spectacular and quite extraordinary in equal measure. This will be an opportunity to give visitors a new perspective of our place on the planet. We are developing a series of supporting installations, exhibits and events around Gaia, it's going to be a really exciting experience. We never usually get to see the earth from this perspective, Gaia will be awe inspiring."

Scale model of Earth in a large forest setting.

Ahead of its visit to Rochdale borough, Gaia will be visiting Hull, the USA, the Netherlands, Norwich, Norway and Canada before reaching the borough just in time for the start of the festive season.

Darren Grice, deputy chief executive of Your Trust added:

"We're delighted to build on the success of Dippy on Tour, bringing another fantastic creative spectacle to the borough. Just as with Dippy, we hope that seeing the earth as if floating in space, will wow visitors and inspire each of us to protect our precious planet. The United Nations Climate Change Conference in November will be a thought provoking prelude to some very exciting activities here in Rochdale."

The scale model of Earth on display in the Natural History Museum.

A specially made surround sound composition by British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) award winning Composer Dan Jones is played alongside the sculpture.

Further details about its stay in Rochdale will be announced later this summer.