Bolton’s top aquatic attraction is celebrating a very special birthday with a day devoted to its visitors.
The Aquarium, which is part of Bolton Library and Museum Services in Le Mans Crescent, will be 75 years old this week.
In celebration of this diamond anniversary, a special Super Saturday event will be held on Saturday, January 30 from 11am until 3.30pm.
Visitors are invited to join the team for a range of fishy activities, including storytelling, craft sessions, hook-a-duck, fish feeds, and a handling table.
The Aquarium opened on January 27, 1941 with 21 tanks which were home to 20 varieties of fish.
At that time visitors could see a selection of locally sourced fish such as salmon, pike and trout. Now, however, the Aquarium accommodates more than 70 varieties of fish from all around the world.
Some of the more popular attractions are the stingrays, piranhas and pygmy glass danios.
Back in the 1940s visitors would have had to make an appointment to speak to a curator, but now the resident aquarists regularly organise a programme of interactive sessions for visitors of all ages.
The family-friendly approach seems to be a hit, and the Aquarium clocked up more than 100,000 visitors last year.
Bolton Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture, Youth and Sport, Cllr John Byrne, said: “Bolton Aquarium is one of only a few free, public aquariums in the country and we are proud that it is such a popular visitor attraction. The team work hard to make each visit interesting and informative and they have a lot of repeat visitors who love learning about the weird and wonderful fish.
“The 75th birthday celebrations are being held at the weekend rather than the date itself so everyone can join in the fun. There will be a chance to watch the fish being fed, look at the history of the Aquarium, and even make a glow in the dark stingray!”
The Super Saturday event is free entry and more details are available on the Bolton LAMS website in the What’s On section.