Bolton Library and Museum Services

The Story of the Hall

A rare surviving example of a Tudor wooden-framed house, Hall i’ th’ Wood was originally built as a half-timbered hall in the early 16th century.

During the mid-17th century, when it was owned by a family of wealthy yeomen and merchants, the hall was given a grand Jacobean style stone extension.

In later years the building was split into several rented dwellings and, whilst living in one of these with his family, this is where Samuel Crompton famously invented the Spinning Mule.

This invention was the first multiple spindle machine capable of consistent fine yarn production. It revolutionised the UK’s textile industry and literally shaped the fortunes of the town and the North generally.

Hall i’ th’ Wood was inhabited up until the late 19th century, after which it fell into disrepair.

Thanks to Lord Leverhulme, local businessman and philanthropist, the building was saved from ruin and much-needed repairs were undertaken.

The house and grounds were presented to the people of Bolton in memory of Samuel Crompton and were opened to the public as a museum in 1902.

Today it is a place where you can enjoy displays of 17th and early 18th century furniture, objects and artefacts, learn more about the fascinating life and work of Samuel Crompton and discover all about life in Stuart and Tudor times.

The rooms have been accurately refurbished to retain their homely atmosphere and the Lancashire kitchen, cosy Brownlow bedroom, fine oak panelling and ornate plasterwork all bring to life times gone by in this fascinating family house.

A wide variety of events and activities take place throughout the year, catering for people of all interests and ages, meaning there is always something to see and do on your visit.