We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.

National Waterways Museum

The National Waterways Museum is now closed for the winter and will open again on 13 February 2016.

We don't want you to miss out on seeing Santa at the museum. Santa Cruises will run on 12,13 & 19-24 December. Tickets are £10 children and £8 adults and are available to book over the telephone. Please call 0151 355 5017.

A window on the world

At Ellesmere Port, Britain’s 2,000 miles of inland waterways meet the River Mersey, and from there - the sea. We’re developing an exciting new project to explore the connection and explain why Ellesmere Port was a ‘window on the world’.

The museum has been awarded a grant of £790,300 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and match funding of over £50,000 from the Wolfson Foundation. This will enable us to create a new visitor experience including new exhibitions and interactive displays on the currently derelict historic slipway overlooking the River Mersey Estuary and Manchester Ship Canal. 

Step back in time

The project will reopen the Port’s historic slipway. From the 1840s to the 1920s, the slipway was used for boat building and restoration. We’ll be renovating the historic slipway buildings and inviting visitors to step back in time, clock in for work at the slipway supervisor’s office, tinker in the carpenter’s workshop and explore how the historic winch would have raised boats from the Manchester Ship Canal.

Other elements of the project will save two of the most nationally important boats in the museum’s collection – Mossdale and George, which will be used to inspire new audiences about the history of wide boats and their role in the industrial development of the North West Region.

Closing the museum will enable significant work to the slipway to get underway in a safe environment for both staff and contractors.


National Waterways Museum

South Pier Road
Ellesmere Port
CH65 4FW

Opening times

Winter: The museum, shop and cafe will be closed until 13 February 2016. Santa Cruises will operate during this time on 12, 13 and 19 through to 24 December.