Moira Furnace

Moira Furnace


Moira Furnace

The story of a former blast furnace may sound intriguing, but Moira is one of the best-preserved examples of an Industrial Revolution foundry for that exact reason. Find out how minerals become iron then explore the countryside, craft village and nearby Conkers outdoor discovery centre.

Discover the secrets of the industrial revolution and the production of iron in a genuine Victorian foundry. You can see what the site would have looked 200 years ago, including recreations of the cottage industries that thrived on the site, including a cobblers shop and dressmakers.

Once you’ve explored the furnace, then you can take a trip on the Ashby Canal on the Joseph Wilkes barge, just like people in the 1800s would have done. Right next to the Furnace is Moira Country Park with a play area for the kids, woodland trails and walks along the canal, and the Hicks Lodge Cycle Hire so you can  explore a little further.

There are indoor and outdoor events running throughout the year, from craft fairs and motor clubs through to unique and quirky live performances. To make a full day of it, just a short drive away is Conkers indoor and outdoor play area, a fantastic place in the heart of the National Forest for all the family to enjoy.

Add Moira Furnace to your Itinerary

Visitor Details

Key Information

Furnace Lane, Moira, Swadlincote, Leicestershire, DE12 6AT

Tel: 01283 224667

Opening Times

Museum & Narrowboat Trips (1 Apr 2021 - 30 Sept 2021)
Monday - FridayClosed
Saturday - Sunday11:00 - 16:00



snibston colliery Snibston Colliery Park, North West Leicestershire

1620s House & Garden exterior1620s House & Garden, North West Leicestershire

national forest The National Forest

Ashby de la Zouch

Map & Directions



  • Uncover the story - Built on land rich in minerals and with Ashby Canal flowing past its doors, Moira Furnace had all the ingredients for success. Poised to become a major producer of iron as the Industrial Revolution gained speed, it’s surprising to learn that it shut up shop after only five years. <hr> Although its foundry carried on working for another 40 years or so, the blast furnace closed for good in 1811. Had it remained open though, the site – one of the best preserved in Europe – would have been modernised over time and a rare piece of history lost forever. <hr> Instead, it emerged as Moira Furnace Museum and Country Park, and visitors can see how minerals were turned into iron, learn about the people who called the furnace home until the 1970s, and find out why it was destined to fail. <hr> Outside, take a stroll along the towpath of the restored section of the Ashby Canal to discover lime kilns and look for the wildlife that calls the area home. For a different perspective, embark on a relaxing cruise aboard The Joseph Wilkes barge, or explore the country park, where the stark coalfield landscape has been replaced by the lush greenery of the National Forest. <hr> An onsite Craft Village gives visitors the chance to purchase unique souvenirs, and Hicks Lodge is easily accessible for anyone wanting to explore on two wheels. Whether you choose to cycle or walk, you’ll find Conkers, a 120-acre indoor and outdoor adventure, and Donisthorpe Woodland Park, which boasts a picturesque network of paths, also within easy reach. <hr> With so much to do in the area, including folk and canal festivals, a daytrip is not enough. Stay at Conkers Camping and Caravan Club or YHA National Forest and transform a fun day into a short break or family holiday.

Venue Facilities

  • Pet Friendly

Accreditations & Awards

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