Bob's Mellor Mill Diary
Bob (Robert Humphrey-Taylor) is leading the excavations at Mellor Mill.
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The Back Wall of the Mill Identified!
22nd February: A very good day today with the digger and dumper. We have identified the back wall of the mill (see pictures below) and found a wall of the saw pit/woodworking shop.
Two images of the back wall; the first taken on 22 February and the better one on the right taken 23 February.
24th February: I have erected the red and white tape line on the head race to indicate the outside of the mill rear wall. So the outside depth of the mill is now established as being around 35 feet:
A disappointment at the Mellor Mill Site
We recently had a Structural Engineer look at some of our tunnels as part of the Mellor Mill Survey which I am conducting as part of our submission for stage two funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund. Sadly the tailrace tunnel from the Wellington wheel pit to the Waterloo wheel pit is in a dangerous condition. It is so bad that we will not, for safety reasons, be able to excavate it. We, Mellor Archaeological Trust, decided we had to gate off this tunnel as a matter of urgency since leaving it open is tantamount to allowing people to investigate it with all the risks that would involve. We had hoped to clear this tunnel out and invite visitors to walk through but sadly this will not be possible. However, the tunnel which brought power into the mill via a drive shaft, from the Waterloo Wheel, is in excellent condition and there is every reason to believe this will be a viable route for visitors to use as they progress around the site from the mill to the ancillary buildings down by the River Goyt.
I'll be down there this weekend if you feel like joining us, or just visiting, now that the weather has improved.
An Excellent Day today
I had an excellent day today (Monday 28 January) down at the mill. My one free day this week and I landed on Wright Hire's doorstep at 7.30 am to see if they had a digger I could hire. They had and I have spent the day clearing areas for the site survey. The great success is finally discovering the walls of the Stable/Coach house. Culwicks men came down to make their profiles for the gratings to protect the Wellington tailrace. I have also had an email from SMBC to say one of their engineers will contact me in the next 24 hrs to arrange a visit to look at the weakened tunnel structures.
We are back down at Mellor Mill, each weekend, from Saturday 12th January. The main focus of the work is now shifting to identifying the exact locations of the ancillary buildings down by the river to enable us to complete an accurate survey of the entire site in readiness for our stage two Heritage Lottery Fund application late Spring. The timescale for this work to be completed is relatively short and so we could do with lots of help. Do please consider coming down as often as possible to get this important stage completed.
Looking forward to seeing you all again.
I include a plan of where we are going to put in some test trenches over the next few weeks.
PROPOSED TEST TRENCHES AREAS ‘A’ & ‘B’
1. Mill front wall adjacent to room 12
2. NE corner of Waterloo Wheel House
3. Southern edge of Gasometer
4. SE corner of Retort House
5. NE corner of Warehouse
6. SE corner of Mechanics Shop
7. NE corner of Workshop
8. NE corner of Warehouse
9. SE corner of Engine House
10. NW corner of Cotton Rooms
11. E of Mill rear main wall
12. E of Mill rear main wall
On the day we started to investigate the workshops etc down by the river,
... Arthur Procter agreed to come down for the day and record the action. The following is a small selection of what he witnessed -
The First Cut is made Much Progress is made
'Now, what's this?'
Bob & Donald havinga Review