This is one of those places that kinda slipped under the radar and after a spotting a recent report elsewhere i thought it was high time it was back on it. Unfortunately only half of this old woollen mill still stands (thanks, apparently to some bats). Still, there was enough left for a nice little afternoon mooch with the missus. Built in 1888 it remained in operation until 1982. The chimney was demolished for safety reasons and the engine shed dismantled to enable the engine to be removed. The engine was built earlier (in 1870) and was fitted in another mill. How it came to be in this mill is a mystery but it seems it was also modified to incorperate some of the most recent innovations of the day which made the engine far more efficient and powerful. It is now in the Bolton steam museum (working i think). Something that im still trying to confirm is the presence of a water turbine. Inside one of the ground floor rooms is a rather large pipe which enters the room and ends. It appears to come from the inlet in the end wall from the mill pond. In the floor is a second equally large pipe which disappears through the floor. you can here running water at the bottom. Obviously a large bit of kit has been removed from between these pipes which i think would have been a water turbine (probably to produce electricity). An electric meter was on the wall in the same room. I spotted a few heavy duty ceramic insulators dotted around suggesting the presence of high voltage cables. Im guessing the steam engine was to power the mills machines whilst the turbine supplied lighting? However, with the water coming from a millpond that requires constant monitoring of water levels its hard to see how they could have kept it running constantly. I would love to know if anyone could confirm the presence of a turbine, i dont see what else they would need the mill pond for but with an inlet pipe that must be 18 inches across it wasnt for washing ya hands and flushing the loos..
Nice little mooch this, the only downside was the sheer amount of flying things that just kinda engulfed the area. Oh and the bats have gone,..... probably
Hopefully my editing is improving but its still a feckin pain in the arse
Thanks fer lookin