Building record MDR12786 - Saw Mill complex, Kedleston Park, Weston Underwood

Type and Period (5)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

The saw mill and joiners' shop in Kedleston Park are of red brick construction, with some use of sandstone for quoins. Lintels, roof structures and bay posts are of sawn oak, while the roofing is modern. The main workshop wing dates from 1825. A voucher in connection with its construction includes a payment for '5 days work taking down old shop and getting out foundations', suggesting that an earlier building existed on the site. It was built by Samuel Clark, a permanent employee who had previously constructed the Old Smithy in Kedleston village in the same simple gothic style. The workshop appears to have been modified or extended soon after its construction. On the first floor are several machines by T Robinson & Sons of Rochdale, probably purchased in 1873-4. The saw mill and engine house are attached to the workshop wing at right angles, and date from the later 19th century, possibly 1874 when the accounts record the supply of line-shafting, engine and boiler by William Able (replacing a portable steam engine that had been supplied in 1859). The sawmill is open along almost all of its west side, and has a small privy projecting from the east wall. There is very little surviving machinery. At the southern end of the saw mill is a brick-built engine house and chimney. The latter is free-standing, square in plan and tapering as it increases in height, capped by stone flags. To the south-east is a single storey brick-built creosote shed, used in connection with the saw mill and joiners' shop to treat timbers which would then have been used on the estate. To the rear of this building is a short square chimney stack which provided a draught for a fire grate within the building. The fire heated a tank that presumably would have held hot tar or creosote into which the timber would have been immersed. Late 19th century maps also show a gasometer about 15m to the south-east of the creosote shed, although it is not clear whether the two were connected. The gasometer was built in 1861 and provided gas to Kedleston Hall via a cast iron pipe. (1) The Saw Mill complex stands to the north-east of Kedleston Hall and is concealed by the densely wooded area of Hay Wood. It is clear from estate accounts that the west side of the Joiners' Shop wing was constructed in 1825 and that it was originally thatched. There is also an entry for thatching the saw pit in 1825, which may be the same saw pit as that surviving today to the north-east of the site. Accounts in August 1826 refer to the supply of brickwork and stonework for the chimney at Haywood Shop (the name shown on a map of 1854). Given the absence of an engine house on the 1854 map, the materials were probably for the construction of the chimney stack for the fireplace in the Joiners' Shop. An entry in the accounts in 1859 refer to the supply of an engine and steam gauge, suggesting that the Engine House and Saw Mill wing, at right angles to the Joiners' Shop, had been built by this date. However, glass tubes were bought for an engine in 1858 and an engine was repaired in the same year, suggesting that there was already an earlier engine house. In 1874 an engine and boiler was supplied by W A Bell. The boiler was presumably housed in the Saw Mill and Engine House wing where the flue leading to the chimney still remains. The Ordnance Survey map of 1878 shows the Saw Mill complex largely as it is today, although two buildings - a gasometer to the south-east and an un-named building to the south-west - no longer survive. In July 1996 the Saw Mill and Engine House wing suffered fire damage, with the buildings being repaired in 1998. Today they are used as the estate wood yard and many of the interior spaces are used as timber and tool stores. A historic building survey was carried out in 2010, in order to create a permanent record of the structures and to inform future management, conservation and repair. (2) The Saw mill was built in the 19th century but is now used for storage. It was built from red brick with plain tile roofs, a brick ridge chimney stack and a tall tapering free-standing stack. It is two storeys high and T shaped in plan. There is a lean-to cart shed to the rear. The adjoining engine house to the right, forms the 'T' shape and has a gabled porch to the south east with a semi-circular arch. The engine house to the south of the Saw Mill was built in the late 19th century but is now empty and used for storage. It was built from red brick with a plain tile roof and raised ridge ventilator. The gabled north elevation has a cart entrance with double doors, flanked by single doorways, each with a stone lintel and a single window above. Near by is a free-standing tapering brick chimney stack. (3) Steam-powered sawmill in Kedleston Park. Two small single storey brick buildings each with a tall chimney. Disused since the 1940s. (4)

Sources/Archives (4)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Marshall, G (The National Trust). 1989. National Trust Archaeological Survey : Kedleston Hall, Derbyshire. pp 147-151; pp 164-165.
  • <2> Unpublished document: Watson, C & Simons, E. 2010. The Saw Mill, Kedleston Hall. Historic Building Report.. HER Doc. No. 1386.
  • <3> Listed Building File: Historic England. 2011. The National Heritage List for England. List entry numbers 1233144 & 1109069.
  • <4> Bibliographic reference: Fowkes, D (ed.). 2011. Derbyshire Industrial Archaeology: A Gazetteer of Sites, Part III, Borough of Amber Valley (second edition). pp. 36.



Grid reference Centred SK 3155 4125 (70m by 82m)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (0)

External Links (0)

Record last edited

Oct 15 2014 2:23PM

Comments and Feedback

Do you have any more information about this record? Please feel free to comment with information and photographs, or ask any questions, using the "Disqus" tool below. Comments are moderated, and we aim to respond/publish as soon as possible.