REASONS FOR DESIGNATION
The monument, comprising the water management system associated with Sir Richard Arkwright's third mill and his first designed to harness river power, survives as an almost complete and well-preserved series of earthworks and structures. The diversity of weirs, bridges, embankment and dam wall are important examples of 19th century industrial engineering. Documentation provides a full picture of Arkwright's original and modified plans for the mill, its operation and productivity.
The monument includes the water management earthworks and structures associated with Sir Richard Arkwright's third mill. It was his first designed to use river water and became his most ambitious water-harnessing scheme. The surviving features comprise a submerged weir, a millstream, millpond and millrace (all retained by an earthen embankment), a high retaining dam wall, a water outlet tunnel and a tail-race. The original lease on the site was obtained by Arkwright in 1777 who went on to build the first mill and millpond. The original millpond lay behind the mill buildings and comprised three weirs, an embankment and a new river channel. The millpond was contained behind a high dam wall which incorporated a millwheel of undershot type. By the 1820s the pond and water wheel were no longer adequate and were modified by an embankment 0.8km long with an enlarged water wheel of high-breast type. The embankments were further modified and strengthened in 1880 on the line of the original embankments. Together with the enlarged millpond, millrace, dam wall, tailrace and river bridge, the hydraulic system of post-1820 survives intact. The mill buildings were destroyed by fire and successive modern buildings now cover the original mill site. The tunnel is included in the scheduling as a subterranean feature. The ground surface which overlies it, including the car park, is excluded from the scheduling. The turbine house and its modern machinery sited at the south end of the dam wall, and the tilting sluice towards the western end of Mill Pond are also excluded from the scheduling.
Article Reference - Author: Mackensie, M H - Title: The Bakewell Cotton Mill and the Arkwrights - Date: 1959 - Journal Title: Derbyshire Archaeol J - Page References: 61-79 - Type: DESC TEXT
Article Reference - Author: Thornhill, R - Title: The Arkwright Cotton Mill at Bakewell - Date: 1959 - Journal Title: Derbyshire Archaeol J - Page References: 80-87 - Type: DESC TEXT - Description: Includes old photographs