A Curious Old House

Between 2009 and 2011 the Hall underwent dramatic restoration on its physical structure by conservationists. During that time photographers Liz Lock and Mishka Henner set out to explore the building's significance to those whose lives have been touched by it and who have contributed to its survival.

They took portraits of former residents, neighbours, workers and visitors that formed 'A Curious Old House', the Hall's first exhibition when it reopened on the 15 May 2011. The exhibition was a celebration of the Hall's significance to all who have become enchanted by this curious old house. The exhibition was accompanied by a book of the same title that includes many of these portraits with extended interviews, artefacts and vintage photographs relating to the Hall.

Anstice Parke, former keeper of Ordsall Hall
Between 1960 and 1965, I was the Keeper and was involved in an early restoration of the Hall. People in the neighbourhood said the ghost fled in fear because I asked too many questions.

Jimmy Rice, Salford Lads Club
In the 1950s, we climbed over the walls, snuck in with torches through a sidedoor and got out quickly if we heard anything.

Joyce Nelson, former resident, 1950s
We lived at Ordsall Hall from 1950 to 1955. My husband, Matthew Nelson, was appointed by Earl Egerton who then owned the Hall and was patron of St Cyprian's Church. The Star Chamber was our living room, the paneled room above was our bedroom.

Walter Greenhalgh, Volunteer Heritage Facilitator, plays Will Torkington
I used to put the costume on, would walk around and keep coming back. They locked the door but I still found a way in. People come into the Star Chamber now and sit there for hours not doing anything. Then they leave and say, "See you next week!". How many people go to the same museum every week?

Nicola Savage, Ordsall resident
It's just a funny old museum.