Wigan Pier

At the time of writing (spring 2020), the Wigan Pier area is under redevelopment. No attractions here are open. The area is being developed by Step Places, Wigan Council, and the Old Courts. Plans include a wedding venue, micro-brewery, and housing.
Wigan Pier – 2020

Made famous by its reference in George Orwell’s book, Wigan Pier is a wharf on the Leeds-Liverpool Canal.

The area was extensively redeveloped in the 1980s and 1990s as a tourism and leisure destination. However, most of the attractions here have now closed.

Warehouses at Wigan Pier.

The Way We Were was a museum about Victorian life in Wigan. It shut in 2007 due to low visitor numbers. The Wigan Pier nightclub was one of the premier venues in the UK for bouncy house music. It closed in 2011 and the building was demolished in 2015. The Orwell pub is no longer in business.

The Orwell pub at Wigan Pier
The Orwell

The Trencherfield Mill is a cotton mill built in 1907. It has now been converted into apartments but its ground floor still houses one of the world’s largest working steam engines.

Trencherfield Mill at Wigan Pier.
Trencherfield Mill
Site of the Wigan Pier nightclub - May 2015
Site of the Wigan Pier nightclub – May 2015

Despite the closures and redevelopment work, Wigan Pier is still an interesting area to visit. Most areas are accessible to the general public.

Wigan Pier is located at the southern end of Wigan town centre, just a short walk from both Wigan Wallgate Train Station and Wigan North Western Train Station.

Nearby Attractions

Tourist attractions and things to do near Wigan Pier include:

Nearby Cinemas

Cinemas near Wigan Pier include:

Nearby Shopping

Places to shop near Wigan Pier include:

Nearby Restaurants

Restaurants and places to eat and drink near Wigan Pier include:

Nearby Hotels

Hotels near Wigan Pier include:

  • Mercure Wigan Oak Hotel (0.7 miles)

Nearby Transport Links

Transport links near Wigan Pier include:

Nearby Train Stations

Train stations near Wigan Pier include:


Map showing location of Wigan Pier.

Map showing location of Wigan Pier


Wigan Pier

Address and postcode
Greater Manchester
United Kingdom

Reviews and Additional Information

  1. Visited it years ago and had an amazing day out , one of the highlights of our holiday and one which we had hoped to revisit again, once lockdown was over and all our lives returned to normality. Really sad to find out it’s no longer in existence it was a great living museum and great attraction for kids to experience what it was like in the ” old days ” and for old ones to reminisce.
    I notice by some other comments that work is being carried out on the former Wigan Pier property , could someone advise me what are the council’s intentions for it is or have we seen the last of ” The Way We Were ” at Wigan Pier ?

  2. So sad to find out Wigan Pier Museum has closed. I visited it many years ago on a trip to UK. Planned to take my husband there this year, when we are on holiday, but I guess we need to find somewhere else to visit.

    • Try Portland Basin Ashton Under Lyne.

  3. So sad to find out Wigan Pier museum has closed. visited it many years ago, ona trip to UK. Planned to take my husband there this year, when we are on holiday, but I guess we need to find somewhere else to visit.

  4. Why is everything put into Quarters?

  5. typical of Wigan council to close their best tourist attraction, and replace it with dereliction and yuppie housing.

  6. It had to be a national treasure.

  7. The only decent thing in Wigan was the Wigan Pier nightclub. They need to reopen it, at least that’s my plan for when I win the lottery anyway.

    • You wouldn’t have that opinion if you lived nearby. I witnessed severe drug abuse by individuals not old enough to drink, serious physical abuse mainly by the bouncers. I witnessed one youth being kicked unconscious by the bouncers and I spent 30 minutes by his side until help arrived. The road past the nightclub was like a racing track on club nights with boy racers and joy riders who frequently crashed into the barriers and on occasions hit drunken revellers attempting to cross the road. I also witnessed sex and drug taking under the canal bridge and one drunken lad fell in the canal and drowned. Our property was frequently vandalise as we lived in the cottages just over the bridge and I was sick of picking up bottles cans and rocks from my garden. No Wigan pier nightclub was not a good idea from the outset and I for one was elated to see it go, and I was a club scene lover myself though mainly in Ibiza.

  8. I recently visited Wigan Pier after seeing two programmes on television about it. I thought it was an absolutely fascinating place and am very sad that it has allowed to be so run down. I would love to go on a boat trip along this canal and would be very interested to see a museum being opened.

  9. They’re doing it up to get back the fame for the Pier but the nightclub they demolished played a big part in that fame! I mean they could have just rebuilt it and soundproofed the walls. That place got tonnes of visitors and the music was great.

  10. Demolition of the Wigan Pier nightclub started this week. Wigan Council has announced a 10-year programme to redevelop the area as the Wigan Pier Quarter. The scheme will include a new performance venue, new canal-side housing and leisure development, improvements to the canal towpath and new moorings, a community garden, and redevelopment of the building that housed the Way We Were Museum.

    • We walked from top lock to Wigan pier no toilets no refreshments no seating. Poor showing Wigan. Get back on the map and encourage people to come.

  11. Why were they allowed to close down the best museum I have ever visited?

  12. Its closed down.. But still signposted!

    • I agree it’s still advertised on the museum website as well. We travelled there as my older granddaughter wanted to show it to her younger cousins as she had enjoyed it so much. They were all very disappointed and we had a wasted journey.

  13. What a shame The Way We Were had to close; it was one of the best museums I ever visited.

    • Had a really good day out there years ago, why should it go!

  14. Despite being signposted from the M6 there is nothing open or of interest at Wigan Pier

  15. Despite the museums, etc. being closed, the attraction is still signposted from around Wigan!


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