Plan your visit FAQs

What are your opening hours?
Initially, opening on Thursdays and Saturdays only, with more days to be added at the start of the school Summer holidays in July.

Is the whole of the Silk Museum open?
Not currently. The building will re-opening in stages: initially our largest gallery featuring our Egyptian Collection with new unseen artifacts, and a new display featuring silk designers of Macclesfield.

How long can I stay?
We think you should be able to see everything at the Silk Museum in about half hour. Guided Tours of Paradise Mill are 1 hour.

Timed ticket entry – Do I need to prebook before I arrive?
Yes. For your safety and the safety of our staff, everyone must book online in advance.

If you are buying tickets as a group, you can book up to 6 tickets online. Each person in the group must have their own ticket. We cannot admit groups larger than 6 people currently.

To avoid disappointment, please try to arrive up to 5 minutes before your time slot. Please follow government advice on social distancing. You can meet people from outside your household at the museum reception area following government advice on social distancing.

Latecomers will only be admitted if there is capacity to do so, and if it is safe for other visitors and our staff.

If I just turn up will I be allowed in?
At quieter times you may be able to turn up at the museum and queue to get in, but to avoid disappointment we advise you book in advance.

If I can’t come to my allocated slot, can I exchange it for another time?
Silk Museum entry tickets are free, so if you can’t make your time slot, please book again online for another time that’s convenient. We would appreciate you cancelling your previous booking to make space for someone else. We cannot issue a refund on purchased tickets for Paradise Mill with less than 48 hours notice. If you wish to exchange for another time slot, please contact us on 01625 612045.

What is the last admission time?
Ticket cut off time is half an hour before the Silk Museum closes. Paradise Mill tours are at set times, please arrive at least 5 minutes before at the Silk Museum Reception

What if I don’t have access to a computer?
We have introduced timed tickets to manage visitor numbers so we can put your safety, and the safety of our staff, first. To manage social distancing we need to limit the number of people in the museum and the number of people queuing to get into the museum.

If you’d prefer to book your timed ticket over the phone and pay securely by card, please call us on 01625 612045.

You can visit reception and book an admission ticket in person with either cash or card. We will then issue a ticket for the next available admission slot – if we are busy, there may be a wait and we can’t guarantee that admission will be on the same day.

If you have any special access requirements, please call us on 01625 612045 and we’ll be happy to help.

Coronavirus precautions

When I visit, will I need to give my name and contact number for test and trace?
Yes, your name and contact details will be required as part of the online booking. If you come to the gallery without a timed ticket booking, you will be asked to provide your name and a contact telephone number.

Will you check my temperature?
We will not check your temperature on arrival, although if you suspect that you may have a temperature or feel unwell, we ask that you delay your visit until it is safe to do so. If you feel unwell during your visit, we ask you to alert a member of staff immediately.

Do I need to wear a face mask?
To help keep each other safe and well, we’re asking all visitors aged 10 and over, who are able, to wear face coverings in the museum.
Will the Gallery staff be wearing protective equipment?
We have introduced PPE for our staff, some will wear face coverings or visors. Acrylic screens have been installed at points where there is face to face interaction between staff and visitors.

How will I be able to social distance?
We are operating a timed entry system to the museum for groups of up to 6 people who you live with, (or are in a support bubble with).

Will I be able to wash my hands?
A hand sanitiser station is located at the entrance and exit to the museum and our unisex toilet has hand washing facilities. This is also a disabled access toilet with a baby changing mat.

Are there benches for visitors? Is it safe to use these?
Yes, we have benches available. These are cleaned regularly. Please maintain social distancing when sitting on the benches.

Are the toilets open?
You are welcome to use the unisex disabled access toilet, with baby changing facilities. These are open only to our visitors who have booked a timed entry ticket to the museum. The toilets will be cleaned regularly at the end of each timed session. Public toilets are available around the corner from the museum on Park Green, SK11 7NA.

What about family visits and baby changing?
Baby changing facilities are available as normal with an enhanced cleaning programme in place.

Can we visit as a group?
Groups of up to 6 people are allowed, in line with Local Government guidelines.

Is the Café open?
The café is open and serving a selection of teas, filter coffee, soft drinks, cake and biscuits. Served in disposable, recyclable cups and plates.

Is the shop open?
Yes, and we have lots of lovely new products displayed. We accept both cash and debit / credit cards with contactless transactions up to £45.

Risk assessment
We have carried out detailed risk assessments to ensure the Silk Museum is a safe environment for visitors and staff. As Government advice changes, we will constantly review our safety measures.