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A Healthy Profit Exhibition 2024

The final chance to explore an exhibition in which we explore the physical, mental and emotional toil of working in a Mill, and how this historical story is relevant to our health and wellbeing today.

  • Booking not needed
  • Free event (admission applies)

A Healthy Profit explores what life was like for workers at Quarry Bank, who, like those at the hundreds of other cotton mills and factories that sprang up across the north during the Industrial Revolution, experienced terrible working conditions. Life-threatening injuries, infections and particularly cotton lung (caused by a lack of ventilation) were common. Life-expectancy was short, even for those at Quarry Bank ¬– the first known mill to provide healthcare for its workers.

The exhibition is based on new research by the University of Manchester and the original notes of the Knutsford-born surgeon Peter Holland, who attended the Mill and has since been deemed a pioneer of occupational medicine. Not for the overly squeamish, you will encounter an array of historic medical equipment that would have been used to treat workers, including glass eyes and medical chests complete with powders and potions, as well as leech jars, inhalers and ear trumpets from our own archive and from the Manchester Museum of Medicine and Health.

Framed as a journey through the different parts of the human body, A Healthy Profit will appeal to adults and children alike, with plenty of interactive displays. It also explores how this history is relevant to health and wellbeing today – effects of pollution, screen time, earphones and diet, as well as the significance of the environment and outdoor spaces also feature in the exhibition.

Normal admission charges apply



Event ticket prices

This event is free, but normal admission charges apply for the venue.

Check admission prices

The basics


Suitable for children of all ages

Meeting point

The exhibition is hosted on the fourth floor of the mill.

What to bring and wear

This is an indoor event


The Mill is accessible via a lift

Upcoming events


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Event summary

27 Feb to 3 Nov 2024
14:00 to 14:45
+ 250 other dates or times

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If you’re aged 16-25 and want to make new friends, gain experience, and design great new events, then we’d love for you to join us.

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9 Mar to 14 Dec 2024
11:00 to 15:00
+ 9 other dates or times

Guided toddler walks 

Our guided group toddler walks take families on a short walk; to experience nature and allow little ones to roam and explore at their own pace.

Event summary

18 Mar to 15 Jul 2024
11:00 to 11:35
+ 4 other dates or times

Easter Bunny Mill Trail 

Help the Easter bunny find his egg on the free Mill trail!

Event summary

23 Mar to 14 Apr 2024
10:30 to 16:30
+ 22 other dates or times