What's on - Museums and archives

Visitor Notices →

The Museum of Wigan Life will be closed from Saturday 24th February until mid-May for a full exhibition changeover. Wigan Local will remain open as normal.

Week commencing 26th February - When planning your visit, please be aware that the Wigan Local Studies will be busier than normal every day this week due to school workshops.

On this page you will find details of museums and archives exhibitions and events.

The Museum of Wigan Life is free unless otherwise stated.

If you have any event queries, you can contact the Museum of Wigan Life and Archives: Wigan and Leigh teams.


Archives: Wigan and Leigh Permanent Exhibition

This amazing display of local stories, archives, and museum objects showcases the local history of the East side of the borough. Our team and volunteers are on hand to answer your questions and help you explore the collection!

  • Where? Archives: Wigan and Leigh
  • What is the cost? Free
  • Do I need to book? No

NHS 75

What was life like in the borough before the NHS? Who has helped shape our healthcare in the last 75 years? What might a  healthy future look like? Learn more in our new

temporary exhibition to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the National Health Service.

  • When? Until the end of March 2024
  • Where? Archives: Wigan & Leigh
  • What is the cost? Free
  • Do I need to book? No

Uncle Joes - Making Life Sweeter Since for Over 125 Years

Temporary display

Price: Free

Uncle Joe’s is a much-loved name in Wigan and well known around the world. Immortalised in countless articles, cartoons, poems, and even a song, these small but mighty sweets are an important part of the town and have been immensely popular since their creation. Still manufactured using traditional methods, 2023 sees the company celebrate its 125th anniversary. This new display brings the brand to life and tells the story like never before.

Upcoming events

Leigh Town Hall Tour

Join a member of the archives team for a behind the scenes tour of the historic town hall building. Availability is limited so you must book in advance

Playful Saturdays

Bring your little explorers along to Playful Saturdays and discover some of the secrets of the archives!  Build your own wacky Lego invention inspired by the amazing inventors of Leigh or experience the magic of creativity with our fun arts and craft activities.

  • When? First Saturday of the month, 10am - 12pm
  • Where? Archives Wigan and Leigh, Leigh Town Hall
  • What is the cost? Free event
  • Do I need to book? No need to book, just drop in.

Soul Time - Music and chat group

Join Manchester Camerata for Soul Time – a music and chat group for people living well with dementia and their families. Come to the museum for a relaxed and informal session set to music.

  • When?  Every other Monday, 1pm - 3pm, starting Monday 29th January 2024
  • Where? Museum of Wigan Life, Library Street, Wigan, WN1 1NU
  • What is the cost? Free
  • Do I need to book? No need to book, just drop in.

Walking Tour of Leigh Cemetery

Join us on a guided tour of Leigh Cemetery to discover more about the fascinating lives of former residents of the town.

When? Thursday 14th March and Thursday 11th April, 11am - 12:30pm

Where? Leigh Cemetery

What is the cost? Free event

Do I need to book? Book your place online for the Leigh Cemetery Tour (external link)

Family Friendly Town Hall Tour

Do you have what it takes to become an Archivist? Want to learn more about local history? Come on a hands-on tour to find out!.

School Holidays Crafts in the Archives

Get ready for the school holidays by coming along to one of our guided craft sessions. Pop into Leigh town hall and try your hand at some activities which are fun for all the family.

  • When? 26th March - 30th March, 11am - 12pm
  • Where? Archives Wigan and Leigh, Leigh Town Hall
  • What is the cost? Free event
  • Do I need to book? No need to book, just drop in.

© Wigan Council