Performers to breathe new life into Quarry Bank’s history

They were some of the most influential characters in Manchester’s history and now their fascinating story is to be revisited in the city they helped make great.

LipService Theatre Company is to offer their own sideways look at the Gregs – the family who built several mills around Manchester in the 1800s helping transform both its landscape and fortunes.

“They were a really extraordinary family who were ahead of their times in many ways and who helped to shape the North West during the Industrial Revolution,” said Kate Picker, Programming Officer for Quarry Bank.

“This will be a fun and unique take on their story and those who join in may literally be walking in the footsteps of the Gregs who would have spent a lot of their time in Manchester.”

The promenade performance by LipService will explore how the Gregs interacted with well-known members of Manchester Society.

Jennifer Reid

Jennifer Reid

The Ballad of Quarry Bank is part of the Manchester Histories Festival, which will also include a unique day of performance by Jennifer Reid at Quarry Bank.

She will be singing songs last heard in Wilmslow 200 years when the workers made their way home after a long day grafting in the mill.

Jennifer, who is 24, describes herself as a Lancashire folk enthusiast and sings broadsides from Manchester Central Library and Chetham’s broadside collections.

On June 12 she will sing next to the machinery that used to deafen the mill workers.

“The machinery used to be so loud the workers developed their own sign language, but these are the kinds of songs they would have sung on the way home from work or at the pub,” she said.

“Fortunately the machines will be turned off for my performances, which will move around the mill.”

Jennifer Reid Sings Broadside Ballads will be on June 12 between 11am and 3pm and is a free event. Normal admission charges apply.

Quarry Bank presents the LipService Theatre Company on June 4 from 1pm to 2.30pm and 4pm to 5.30pm starting at Cross Street Chapel in Manchester.

Tickets are £12 to join LipService’s promenade. To book go to

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