Exploring the museum

4. Wellington Mill

Hat Works opened on Easter Monday 2000, three years after the closure of Christys’, the last local hat factory.

Hat Works is located in Wellington Mill. It was built in 1828 by leading Industrialist Thomas Marsland to help accommodate the burgeoning cotton industry. The hatting connection was the Ward Brothers who occupied part of the building from the 1890's to the 1930's.

Wellington Mill was one of the first fireproof mills. This made it extremely expensive to build and only an option for the wealthiest of factory owners. The mill was built with cast iron columns and brick vaults, which are filled with sand. The ceiling cavities were also filled with sand.

There are 2 rows of 14 cast iron columns on each floor and cast iron roof trusses, which are unusual. At 7 stories tall, Wellington Mill is one of the tallest mills in Stockport. The 200 foot chimney, which is a famous Stockport landmark, was added in 1860.