I have just received an interesting email from the Worshipful Company of Turners which confirms that this odd machine displayed as a spinning wheel in the woollen display at Helmshore Textile Museum is in fact a cotton bobbin winder and it is indeed set upon a new wooden base to make it look like a spinning wheel. Originally it would have been operated by a child - result!
This photo I took at the Macclesfield Silk Musuem last year - it is also a bobbin winder and was displayed as such.
As an aside there is a very similar item being offered on EBay as a spinning wheel by someone the US - rumoured to have been used by Rumpelstiltskin to spin straw into gold!!!! At least this one is probably still on its original base!
Interestingly they are also offering as a separate item the bobbins spools, but have described them spindles for spinng wheel.