Finding a future for Lancashire’s historic mills

An aerial view of Queen Street Mill in Burnley on a sunny day

Lancashire’s crucial role in helping to define Britain’s industrial revolution is captured by two unique textile mill museums. The National Trust has joined forces with Lancashire County Council to tell the story of these important heritage sites.

Sitting on the outskirts of Burnley, Grade I listed Queen Street Mill, which was featured in The King's Speech and Mike Leigh's Peterloo, is the last surviving 19th-century steam powered weaving mill in the world. Helmshore Mills, made up of Higher Mill and Whittaker's Mill, are the only mills to still have their original working machinery in situ, with visitors able to see how raw wool and cotton were transformed into yarn ready for cloth to be woven more than a century ago.

Although pressure on budgets resulted in the temporary closure of Queen Street Mill and Helmshore Mills in 2016, Lancashire County Council has since re-opened these culturally-significant sites, which welcome visitors from April to October.

As a charity that cares for and protects places that matter, we want to play our part in helping more places deliver public benefit for all – not just those places in our care. That’s why the National Trust is working with partners including Lancashire County Council and the National Lottery Heritage Fund to help share the stories of these amazing places with a wider audience and secure them for the future.

Half-price offer for National Trust members

In May and June 2022, National Trust members can visit these two iconic textile museums for half the normal price. Members of the National Trust, along with any friends or family members who join them, can claim their half-price entry to Queen Street Mill and Helmshore Mills for this limited period, by showing a valid membership card on their visit to the mills.

The offer gives over 5.6 million history-loving National Trust members the opportunity to experience the earth-shaking power of the mills’ machinery and discover how Lancashire played its part in the Industrial Revolution.

Plan your visit to Lancashire's mills

View over the gardens to Quarry Bank House and the mill at Quarry Bank

Explore the North West's textile history at Quarry Bank

Continue your journey through the industrial past with a visit to Quarry Bank in Cheshire. With its thundering cotton mill, workers' cottages, landscaped gardens and Apprentice House, this is a complete industrial community.