Welcome to my blog, where I take pleasure in words and pictures, be they my own or those of others. I'm a creative individual, and the crafty side I explore on my 'other blog', Picking Up The Threads, which I hope you'll visit too. I'm sure you understand that I have sole copyright of my original work and any of my contributions, so please ask if you want to use them. A polite request is rarely refused. So, as they used to say on the BBC's 'Listen With Mother' radio programme, many years ago: "Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin."

Friday, 3 June 2016

Wheel Meet Again


Two engineers discussing the workings of a disused mill wheel in 1985. My husband, in the checked shirt, and a friend. Unfortunately, although I wrote the date on the back of this photograph, I had no idea where the mill was.


The kids get involved with the gears and handles, visible to the left in the first photo, but I was no nearer solving the mystery of the location, until.........

Image courtesy of Richard Croft on geograph
...the man in the checked shirt, did some Internet detective work and found it!  It’s Stockwith Mill, Hagworthingham, Lincolnshire. It was a flourmill, which ceased production before the Second World War, although the wheel powered a generator until the 1950s. There used to be a tea room there and clearly we had taken the kids out for the day in the summer of 1985. It wasn’t far from where we lived at Coningsby.



I know where this mill is though; it’s old name was Harnham Mill, Salisbury, round the corner from where I used to live. A great place to walk to from our house, for a drink or a meal. The Town Path, which begins in the city of Salisbury, and ends here - or perhaps it’s the other way round, depending on your desired destination, passes though the Water Meadows, familiar from John Constable’s paintings.



The stone building (here showing a smart chequerboard of ashlar and flint) was constructed about five hundred years ago as a paper mill. It occupies the site of a medieval fulling mill, and over the years has been used for making cloth, bone fertiliser and candles. It is now the hotel and restaurant we know and love and a great place for a reunion. Whenever we go back to Salisbury to see old friends, it’s one of our favourite places to meet. We’ve lost touch with the friends from 1985, but who knows one day we may meet again.


This picture was taken last September, at the Old Mill, where I caught up with some of my lovely friends from the world of education. Why not catch up with old friends, and meet new ones, over at Sepia Saturday, where the image below was our inspiration.

13 comments:

  1. Stockwith Mill was quite an attraction as a tea room and water bird sanctuary until recently. Now it is a private home.

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  2. When people ever ask if I miss anything about living in UK, I tell them only drinking a pint of Abbott Ale in the Old Mlll on a Saturday lunchtime after shopping!

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  3. How wonderful, of course the man in the checked shirt (your hubby) could determine the name. What an interesting visit it must have been back then. Lovely family memories and photos. The stone building in your last photo is just a treat to see, and surely a place for memories to be had!

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  4. The Harnham Mill and pond looks like it would make a lovely destination walk. I love the sound of moving water - hence a triple-tier fountain in the garden near my gazebo! Looking at the picture I can almost feel a gentle breeze flowing past to keep me cool as a walk along.

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  5. There is something so nice about mills, specially when they are working. Years ago I had tea in Maud Fosters windmill in Lincs. and it was absolutely cool to be there while the sails were going round and round!

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  6. Until I read this I forgot about the moulin restaurants in France. It seems old mills attract great cuisine. Does anyone remember the essay by MFK Fisher about eating Truite Bleu in a French mill?

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  7. Good work by that man in the check shirt, and the Harnham Mill sounds like somewhere to ad to the list of places to visit when we are next in the UK and have some free time to explore one of these days.

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  8. Isn't the internet great for filling in those gaps sometimes? Your husband too! Lovely picture with the children. We have an interesting old mill just down the road from us. It's privately owned, but they open to the public during National Mill Weekend which was only a few weeks ago. Like the sound of Harnham Mill!

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  9. and the wheel turns back to where it started, wheel meet again. I really like hearing the Sepian stories about places I know nothing about. A real treat to wander with you over the years from stockworth Mill to Harnham Mill. The flint and ashlar was eye catching.

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  10. Love the ashlar and flint pattern -- we don't see that around here!

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  11. The checkerboard pattern on the Old Mill Hotel is stunning. Love the modern photo of the Stockwith Mill, even the picket fencing is recognizable from old photo to new.

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  12. Yes, gather for cheerful sharing with old friends, (or new) whether at a mill site or not! One is silver, and the other is gold, as they say.

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  13. I still marvel at how wooden structures survive to a great age in Britain's damp climate. Most old mills in the US have all decayed beyond recovery.

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