Bolton Steam Museum

Bolton Steam Museum is a museum in Bolton, Greater Manchester, England, which houses a variety of preserved steam engines. It is owned and run by the Northern Mill Engine Society (NMES).


The NMES is a registered charity (No 532259) and the museum has received Registered museum status from Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA), the government body responsible for museums and libraries policy. Due the fact that work is still very much in progress, it is unfortunately not yet possible to open the museum to the public on a regular basis, although special Open Days are held each year. However, visits by genuine enthusiasts or organised groups can always be accommodated by prior arrangement. (See website).

Steam engines

The following is a list of the mill engines that have been preserved and are on show at Bolton Steam Museum. For further details of the engine types, see steam engine.

  • A twin-beam engine, of unknown make, with gear drive flywheel, circa 1840, from the Crossfield Mill, Wardle, Lancashire
  • A tandem compound engine with Corliss valve gear built by J & W McNaught Ltd of Rochdale in 1902 for the Wasp Mill, Wardle, Lancashire
  • A "non-dead-centre" inverted vertical compound engine, built by John Musgrave and Sons of Bolton in 1893, using Fleming and Ferguson patents, for Park Street Mill, Radcliffe, Lancashire
  • An inverted vertical compound engine with Corliss valve gear built by Scott & Hodgson Ltd of Guide Bridge in 1914 for Hardman and Ingham’s Diamond Rope Works, Royton, Lancashire
  • A McNaughted compound single beam engine (originally c 1870) modified by Woodhouse and Mitchell of Brighouse in 1908 for Cellarsclough Mill, Marsden, Huddersfield, Yorkshire
  • A single-cylinder horizontal Uniflow engine built by Robey of Lincoln in 1926, originally for the Baltic Sawmills, Ammanford, South Wales.
  • A twin cylinder cross-compound engine built by Robey of Lincoln in 1935 for the laboratories of the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology.
  • A single cylinder "A-frame" vertical engine built by Joseph Barraclough of Barnsley in circa 1860 for Redfearn's Glassworks, Barnsley, South Yorkshire.
  • A vertical engine built by John Chadwick Ltd of Manchester, that was used to pump water in Cellarsclough Mills at Marsden
  • A high-speed compound inverted vertical engine built in 1900 by Browett and Lindley of Patricroft driving an early two-pole dynamo by J H Holmes of Newcastle, from Lakefield Mill, Farnworth, Bolton
  • A single-cylinder horizontal engine by Tangye of Birmingham from Vantona Textiles Ltd of Farnworth
  • A twin–cylinder diagonal engine built by Lang Bridge Ironworks of Accrington for textile printing machinery driving, from Bollington Printworks, Cheshire
  • A single cylinder horizontal rotative fire pump engine built by Walkers of Radcliffe circa 1890 for the Fern Mill, Shaw, Lancashire
  • A further 12 smaller steam engines of different designs by various makers
  • A rare Musgrave barring engine, used to turn the large mill engines into the start position, a procedure that was originally done by "Barring" the flywheel by hand. This engine was in the Bolton Museum's collection but has been transferred to this museum which is only a few yards from its original working place.

Building Activity

  • OpenBuildings
    OpenBuildings updated a digital reference
    about 6 years ago via Annotator
  • OpenBuildings
    OpenBuildings updated a digital reference and added a digital reference
    about 6 years ago via