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Listed Building record MDR3650 - Caudwell's Mill, River Wye, Rowsley

Type and Period (5)

  • (Victorian to 21st Century - 1874 AD to 2050 AD)
  • (Medieval to Post Medieval - 1300 AD to 1900 AD)
  • (Medieval to Victorian - 1300 AD? to 1858 AD)
  • (Medieval to Georgian - 1350 AD? to 1800 AD?)
  • (Georgian to Victorian - 1800 AD? to 1871 AD?)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

SK 25556573 Corn Mill (1) Caudwell's Mills was built in 1875. It originally had a breast water wheel and 8 pairs of stones. It was re-equipped in 1885 with 8 sets of roller mills and a 48 inch 'Trent' turbine installed in 1887. The attached provender mill was driven by a water wheel until 1898 when a 33 inch 'Little Giant' turbine was installed. (2) The earliest record of a mill at Rowsley is in 1339 and by the 16th century there was both a corn mill and a fulling mill. Between 1799 and 1840 the fulling mill was replaced by a saw mill which worked until about 1871. The corn mill continued to operate until 1858. Both mills were demolished in 1874 to make way for the present corn mill. This was powered by four breast shot wheels which together drove eight pairs of stones . The work cost £7000 and the mill buildings and the water course are almost the same today as when they were built, although the milling equipment and power source changed over the years. In 1877 roller milling was introduced into Britain and in 1881 this technology was introduced into Caudwell's mill followed, in 1887, by a turbine to provide enough power. Continuous improvements were added over the course of the first half of the 20th century, keeping the mill up-to-date and it thrived until the 1970s when it was forced to close down. Four years later a Charitable Trust was formed to maintain and operate the mill and it is now open to the public, as well as being one of only two in the county able to still produce flour. (3, 4) Four storey gritstone roller flour mill built by John Caudwell in 1874. Converted into roller milling in 1885 (Thornton's of Retford) and replaced by a water turbine in 1887, having proved difficult to adapt to the roller-milling system. The mill was abandoned as a commercial enterprise in about 1974 but is now run by a charitable trust, the future of the machinery having been assured. Some of the machinery has been updated over the years and an electric motor now powers the mill on a day-to-day basis but the mill remains an extremely rare example of a water powered roller flour mill. (5)

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <1> Map: 1974. OS 6".
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: 1975. CBA Panel on Industustrial Monuments. p13.
  • <3> Bibliographic reference: Gifford, A. 1999. Derbyshire Watermills: Corn Mills.. A 45, pp 52-54, Plates 14-16.
  • <4> Article in serial: Walker, G. 2000. 'Caudwell's Mill, rowsley, Derbyshire', Wind & Water Mills. Number 19, pp 43-77.
  • <5> Bibliographic reference: Fowkes, D (ed.). 1997. Derbyshire Industrial Archaeology. A Gazetteer of Sites. Part IV. Derbyshire Dales.



Grid reference Centred SK 2558 6574 (93m by 54m) Centre

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Record last edited

Nov 12 2023 5:27PM

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