Onwards and Upwards: Museum Expansion

Celebrating our rich and unique textile heritage and creating an attraction of regional significance

The museum has been closed since July 2019, making way for the ‘Onwards and Upwards’ project, our fantastic multi-million-pound expansion of Trowbridge Museum supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Trowbridge Town Council.

Keep an eye out for our monthly updates here!

Our fantastic full programme of events, activities and workshops, including new activities is still running throughout 2020 before the museum re-opens in August 2020, so be sure to check our What’s On page for details!


‘Onwards and Upwards’ will offer further insight into the rich textile related heritage heart of the town, transforming Trowbridge Museum into a regionally significant heritage attraction. By doubling its size and extending into the second floor of its premises in The Shires, Trowbridge Museum will be more accessible to a wider audience, offer improved facilities and learning opportunities for all ages. The museum can also now display a larger collection of objects than ever before.



All of the objects from the displays and collection store are being safely stored in their temporary home at Upper Heyford in Oxfordshire (the former USAF Air Force base!).

Before we could put the objects into storage, they were heat treated to ensure that no nasty pests were stored with them.


Throughout 2019 the team worked with designers, Smith and Jones, and architects, Architecton, on the finer details of the re-build of the museum building, Salter’s Home Mill. All of those plans are now becoming a reality as Beard Construction have taken over the site and are uncovering beautiful brickwork (scars and all – remember it has survived a few fires!), building our exciting new learning space, and making way for the innovative displays.


The team have made sure to put on their hard hats and visit Home Mill as much as possible – we can’t wait to move all of the objects back to their new and improved home!



When the expansion opens later this year, we will give visitors the opportunity to engage with our textile past in Home Mill, discover new skills and be inspired by our contemporary exhibitions. It will include a range of brand new features and exhibits:

  • Expanded creative zones & workshops
  • Enhanced temporary exhibition space
  • Weaving & textile related courses
  • Costumed interpreters for mill experience
  • Handloom weaving
  • A brand new learning space
  • Meeting rooms, with a spectacular view of Trowbridge
  • Improved displays of our remarkable textile machinery


The project also offers visitors a variety of new unique experiences, where you can weave your way through the story of West of England cloth and discover innovation, revolution and riches…

Museum Expansion Project

  • Historic architecture
  • Unique textile machinery
  • Engaging collections
  • Hands-on experiences
  • New large library & research facility
  • Refreshment space
  • Longer opening hours
  • Enhanced accessibility

As well as our monthly updates, visit our Facebook and Twitter pages for regular news. We look forward to seeing you at the new and improved Museum in August 2020!