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Cambridge Museum of Technology, Cambridge

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#10 of 11 in Museums in Cambridge
Specialty Museum Museum
The Cambridge Museum of Technology is an industrial heritage museum situated in Cambridge, UK. The original building, a Scheduled Ancient Monument, housed a combined sewage pumping and waste destructor station built in 1894.HistoryThe Cheddars Lane Pumping Station was originally opened in 1894 in a scheme which also saw the creation of a sewage farm at Milton, two and a quarter miles away. Household rubbish was burnt to raise steam, to power the engines which pumped sewage to the Milton sewage farm. At the farm it was used as a fertiliser to grow the crops which fed the horses that pulled the carts which collected the rubbish and brought it to the pumping station. Even the ash from the burnt rubbish could be used in road making.1894, Original equipmentOriginally, the boilers used to provide steam to the sewage pumping engines were heated by the burning of waste collected around the city in destructor furnaces, these are the only near complete examples surviving. It represents a typical early design and layout of a good medium-sized municipal destructor, buildings, and its equipment and chimney.The museum's main attraction are two Hathorn Davey steam engines, one of which is fully operational and often runs on steam weekends. The purpose of these engines were to lift foul water (sewage and rain water) from the sump immediately below it to the sewage farm at Milton, the total lift being about 43 ft. These engines were designed to pump 250,000 gallons of sewage per hour, a job which they undertook until 1968, when a new electric engine house was built adjacent to the station, although this site shut down in 1994.The chimney shaft is 175 ft. in height, octagonal with square base, lined with; fire-bricks for a height of 50 ft., and is 6 ft. 6 in. internal diameter at the top. In 1992 the chimney was laddered by Fred Dibnah, who undertook painting and pointing repairs and was featured in a BBC programme.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
23 reviews
Google
4.3
TripAdvisor
  • The volunteer staff are simply great- friendly , welcoming, enthusiastic , knowledgable and self evidently proud of this wonderful building. And what a gem it is too. This is a small museum, which pro...  more »
  • Small museum, run by volunteers, interesting and amazing, I had cycled past the museum far too many times to count, called in on a 'steam up day' and we were impressed with the range of machines on sh...  more »
  • Found this little gem late in our weekend stay, what a great place, run by enthusiasts. The building is a Victorian water treatment plant. This highlights our Victorian social values for the good of t...  more »
Google
  • Museum of Technology enhanced with Thirsty Biergarten. Wonderful place if you want to hang out with family and friends. German beer and a nice collection of street food, coffee, ice cream, macaron... this could be one of the best place for summer. Bit expensive though...
  • Not what you think from its title, this museum is a fantastic afternoon trip back in time. On its original site and presently having some restoration work done it tells the history of how Cambridge resolved its sewage problems through time,with ALL the original MACHINES used in situ. The steam boiler is currently being restored, but when finished it will be fully working making it the last of its kind in the world.
  • Interesting array of objects. The steam days are brilliant
  • Excellent little museum, with lots to see, I visited during a "Teslathon" event, which was very exciting to see these giant machines that fire lightning from the top, awesome!
  • Amazing staff and a great range off food and drink. It has now become a regular watering hole for me and a group of friends.

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Where to stay in Cambridge

With over 150 hotels, B&Bs, inns, and self-catering facilities, Cambridge offers a wealth of lodging options for every taste and budget. While visiting this heritage-rich city, you can even enjoy the university experience by staying in a college room. These centrally located B&B rooms offer an inexpensive and convenient alternative to staying in the city's hotels. You can retrace the footsteps of the university's famous graduates, grab a meal in the college hall, get lost in the campus and hidden courtyards, and end the day with a drink in the college bar.
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