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The Nicholson Museum and gallery

The Nicholson Institute

Built in 1884 by silk mill owner Joshua Nicholson, the building is one of a few in the country still being used for the purpose for which it was built. Many famous figures have visited the building over the years, with music and lectures by the likes of Oscar Wilde and John Betjaman. William Morris, during his prolonged period in Leek, would most certainly have visited the building, and today, fine examples of his fabrics embroidered by The Leek Embroidery Society are on display.

The Museum

On 30th September 2010, Lord Shrewsbury officially opened the refurbished Nicholson Museum & Art Gallery, fully returning the historical listed building to its original purpose of a public centre of excellence and learning. 

The Museum displays items from the council's collection. Many of the items were gifts from local businessmen such as the silk moths from Henry Davenport and Thomas Wardle. Other items were given by local residents and reflect the everyday domestic life of the Moorlands. 

The collection includes paintings, costume, embroideries, ceramic and glassware and a selection of items on perpetual loan from the Royal Collection. 

The Gallery

The Nicholson Gallery aims to provide a diverse program of exhibitions and events that will appeal to a cross section of the community, attracting new and existing audiences.  The Art Gallery hosts around eight exhibitions a year which are chosen to cater for a range of ages and tastes. Exhibitions generally run for 6 weeks and most exhibitions are accompanied by supporting events.

Visit our events page to find out whats going on

You can contact a member of staff if you wish to enquire about anything

T: 01538 483 741