With the second series of The Mill beginning again on Channel 4 this evening, I thought it was about time I shared my own visit to the inspiration behind it – Quarry Bank Mill – earlier this year. (I also took a trip there last year, so as not to repeat myself you can read a little of the mill’s history & its connection to the author Elizabeth Gaskell in this post here!)
Quarry Bank Mill is a working museum that explores the Industrial Revolution and its impact on the Victorian cotton trade in the North West of England. Most of the machines still operate, from spinning wheels to power looms, and you can also glimpse the huge water wheel that powers it all.
I always love taking a tour around the Apprentice House whenever I visit Quarry Bank, and after listening to the stories this time round I was eager to catch up with Series 1 of The Mill as soon as I got home (it features many of the characters and tales you hear about at the museum.) I enjoyed it and found it a gritty but captivating portrayal of life as a mill worker in the early 19th century. Needless to say, I’m glad I don’t have to swap places with any of them, I wouldn’t have lasted five minutes!
Quarry Bank is owned by the National Trust and opens seven days a week, 10:30 – 17:00. You can get up-to-date and more detailed information on their website! (They also sell brilliant lemon cake in the tea room – I highly recommend a slice!)