Clayton Hall Museum, Manchester

#10 of 23 in Museums in Manchester
Children’s Museum · Hidden Gem · Educational Site
Clayton Hall is a 15th-century manor house on Ashton New Road, in Clayton, Manchester, England. It is hidden behind trees in a small park. The hall is a Grade II* listed building, the mound on which it is built is a scheduled ancient monument, and a rare example of a medieval moated site. The hall is surrounded by a moat, making an island 66 m by 74 m. Alterations were made to the hall in the 16th and 17th centuries, and it was enlarged in the 18th century.
The building has a Georgian and a Tudor half and is the remaining wing of a larger complex. The hall is reached across the moat over a listed stone bridge. The building is now run by the Clayton Hall Living History Museum Trust. The trust has been set up to administer the hall and to get funds to maintain and improve it for the public.
The trustees have dressed the Georgian side of the hall as though its Victorian occupants still live there. They usually open the hall for free to the public on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of most months. However, when there are events these are usually paid entry.
Clayton Hall was built in the 15th century on the site of a 12th-century house built for the Clayton family. When Cecilia Clayton married Robert de Byron in 1194 it passed to the Byron family, of which poet Lord Byron was a member. The Byrons lived there for more than 400 years until they sold it for £4,700 in 1620 to London merchants, George and Humphrey Chetham, who originated from Manchester. George Chetham died in 1625, leaving his share to his brother Humphrey who founded Chethams School and Library in the centre of Manchester. Humphrey Chetham died at the hall in 1653 and ownership passed to his nephew, George Chetham, son of his brother James.
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121 reviews
  • The volunteers are so passionate and informative. The fact that children could dress up in period clothes and learn what it used to be like working in a household was great.  more »
  • This is the most wonderful place hidden away in an urban setting. We usually go at Christmas but because if covid, have really missed out this year. The people who run it are very welcoming and we....  more »
  • Oh how much fun we had here. All us adults plus a 14 years old boy. We loved touching everything: cooking in the kitchen, baking in the larder, playing with Victorian toys in the bedroom, trying out hats in the sewing room etc. I particularly enjoyed learning about Humphrey Chetham and the older part of the house. Truthfully worth a visit, you won't regret it.
  • If you love the past history, this I would recommend as it is beautifully set on beautiful grounds which is well kept and the information and inside the building are very informative. I would recommend this to all adults and children.
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