Transforming the mill

View across mill and Quarry Bank House

As part of the Quarry Bank Project, we’re transforming your experience of the mill. We’re installing a passenger lift, which will mean that for the first time the whole mill will be accessible to everyone. To allow this work to take place the mill is closed from Monday 20 November 2017, with a full re-opening in summer 2018. The rest of Quarry Bank will remain open throughout the closure of the mill, with lots of new experiences and exciting things for you and your family to get involved in.

Your visit 


There’ll still be lots to see and do at Quarry Bank throughout the mill closure. You can experience the domestic lives of Quarry Bank’s owners and workers in Quarry Bank House, the Apprentice House and Styal village. In the gardens, which are open in the winter for the first time, you can enjoy a wintery walk and see spring burst into life as the seasons change. Pop into the garden café and shop to indulge in a piece of cake or a treat to take home with you, and venture onto the estate to see a part of Quarry Bank that you might not have been to before. 

View of goods lift shaft outside mill

Taking your visit to new heights

We want all of our visitors to be able to experience the sights and sounds of the mill, from the clatter of the machines to the hiss of the steam engines. However, the layout of the mill meant that only three floors were accessible to those with low mobility or to wheelchair users. The Quarry Bank Project has enabled us to change this by installing a passenger lift where we currently have a goods lift. Work to install the lift means that the mill is closed from 20 November 2017 until summer 2018.

Events and exhibitions


Throughout 2018, we’ll also be launching exciting new exhibitions and experiences. Join us for family fun as we embark on a spring nature trail and explore all the wonderful wildlife of spring. 


We’ll also be marking the centenary of the Representation of the People Act that granted some women the right to vote. Despite the significance of this momentous change, the majority of women at Quarry Bank were denied a legal voice as they didn’t meet the age and property qualifications of the Act. Through outdoor installations and events, we’ll be exploring the experiences of women whose voices were not heard then, that have not been recorded for posterity and which are often lost to us today because of their age, status or means.

Demonstrator explaining cotton production to visitors in the mill

Retelling the mill’s story

While the passenger lift is being installed, we’re taking the opportunity to refresh the stories that we tell in the mill. When you come back in summer 2018 you’ll find a new experience, with updated galleries and interactive installations. Once the lift is installed, you’ll also have the choice of where to start and finish your visit. So if you really love the steam engines, then you can head straight to the power gallery and you won’t need to follow a set route around the mill.

Take a piece of Quarry Bank home with you


Throughout the closure of the mill, you’ll still be able to experience the mill’s story in different ways. From December 2017 you can join a tour to the mill yard to explore the story of the mill. You can also take a piece of Quarry Bank home with you, as glass cloths produced on the heritage machinery in the mill will be available to buy from the mill and garden shops. We’ll announce the date that the mill will fully re-open in July 2018. 

Children playing in front of mill

Thank you for your support

Throughout 2017 we’ve raised money through the National Trust raffle to make the installation of the lift possible, alongside other vital conservation work. Thank you to everyone who bought a raffle ticket, and to all of our other donors and funders including the Heritage Lottery Fund. Your support is helping us to transform Quarry Bank.

Upcoming events

A Georgian Christmas

Wed 29 Nov 2017
10:30-16:00
Join us this festive season and explore a traditional Georgian Christmas at Quarry Bank. Enjoy the sophisticated celebrations of the mill owning Gregs, and experience the humble festivities of the apprentices.

Christmas in the gardens

Wed 29 Nov 2017
10:30-16:00
For the first time, the Quarry Bank gardens will be open across the winter season with festive planting and Christmas activities.

Baby and Toddler meet Father Christmas

Fri 01 Dec 2017
10:30-11:00
Join us for a special Christmas baby and toddler storytelling and play session which includes a private family visit to Father Christmas and a gift just for your little one.

Meet Father Christmas at Quarry Bank

Sat 02 Dec 2017
10:30-11:00
Wish lists at the ready! Join in with a special half-hour session of festive activities, including a private family visit to Father Christmas and a gift.

Explore the Outdoors

Wed 24 Jan 2018
10:30-16:00
Head outside and discover all the wonderful wildlife and amazing family adventures you can have in the gardens and woodland at Quarry Bank.

Lost Voices

Sat 03 Mar 2018
10:30-16:00
Lost Voices explores the experiences of women whose stories were not heard, and which are often lost to us today because of their age, status or means. Installations across Quarry Bank will bring their voices to life.