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Arden Mill

A Grade II* Listed Building in Hawnby, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 54.3089 / 54°18'31"N

Longitude: -1.2004 / 1°12'1"W

OS Eastings: 452124

OS Northings: 490658

OS Grid: SE521906

Mapcode National: GBR NL1M.X4

Mapcode Global: WHD85.JYLM

Entry Name: Arden Mill

Listing Date: 31 October 2006

Grade: II*

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1391800

English Heritage Legacy ID: 496234

Location: Hawnby, Ryedale, North Yorkshire, YO62

County: North Yorkshire

District: Ryedale

Civil Parishes: Hawnby

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Upper Ryedale

Church of England Diocese: York

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Listing Text


1028/0/10003 NR. MAIN LANE

Water-powered corn mill. Equipped in the early 18th century to supply Arden Hall. Rubble stone with new pantile roof covering, containing mainly timber machinery.

Three bay single storey mill building, with the smoke bay of the former miller's house extending to the north. Enclosed waterwheel pit occupies the southern bay with access through the gable wall. Wheel pit houses overshot wheel fed from the west, discharging via culverted tailrace to east. Remaining two bays, separated from the waterwheel by an eves height stone wall with roof truss above, form a single room accessed from outside via a porch at the north end of the east wall, with access to the former miller's house through the north gable. Oat roaster built into the east wall of the north bay with an external fire stoke hole. Mill machinery occupies the central bay with a timber platform (or hurst) forming a mezzanine floor for the millstones. Above and below this mezzanine is lit by two windows in the east wall and one in the west, the latter perhaps serving as a loading access. Loft area in the north bay accessed from mezzanine.

Roof structure of the mill building retains two cruck trusses with staggered purlins, trenched with the northern truss, supported by cleats with the southern truss. Rafters are modern.

Ground floor surfacing of cobbles and flagstones includes at least one fragment of a former millstone.

Surviving portion of the former miller's house consists of a smoke bay including an inglenook fireplace with chamfered bressumer beam and salt box. Roof and external gable wall modern.

Mill machinery nearly complete, but no longer operable. Early 18th century layout with a pair of grey stones (5 feet (1.5m) diameter millstone grit) driven off the waterwheel shaft and a pair of blue stones (3.5 feet (1.1m) German lava) driven via gearing and a counter shaft. Most of the gearing is timber but includes some mid 19th century cast iron replacement. Machinery includes lighter staff (lever arrangement for controlling the separation of the millstones) and most of the mechanism for the oat roaster (designed to stir oats on a metal roasting plate to prevent burning). Overshot waterwheel is 14 feet (4.3m) diameter by 2 feet (0.6m), of clasp arm construction in timber with timber buckets.

Mill site is believed to be medieval in origin, serving St Andrew's Priory (the Benedictine nunnery at Arden), hinted at in 1189 and certainly documented in 1536. Current mill thought to have been refurbished by Charles Tankred in the early 18th century, around the time of the expansion of Arden Hall in 1700-1710 to supply fine flour for the hall. In 1846 William Megginson, then the miller, is documented as carrying out repairs, he is also believed to have made some modifications to the mill machinery in the 1850s possibly to allow the milling of barley for animal feed. The mill ceased working in 1912.

The water management system for the mill included two dams, (the stone lined overflow channel for the lower dam can be seen buried in the current riverbank) and a culverted tailrace. Adjacent to the tailrace is a water closet, a small stone building with a hipped roof of stone slates.

'Eight Centuries of Milling in North East Yorkshire' J Harrison, 2001 (North York Moors National Park)
'The Rise of the White Loaf' J Harrison, 2005 (Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, Mills Section)

Arden Mill is of special interest as a water-powered corn mill of possibly medieval origin that retains a near-complete set of early 18th century mill machinery with only minor mid-19th century modifications and repairs. Additionally, it is believed to be a unique survival in a national context of a two-stage gearing arrangement developed in the early 18th century for milling high quality fine flour for the production of white bread, then fashionable in high society. It also retains other nationally-rare surviving features such as a lighter staff (a lever for controlling the fineness of the flour) and an oat roaster. Despite having been re-roofed, the mill building is substantially complete retaining original openings and such features as original floor surfaces. The surviving evidence of associated features such as the water management system further enhances the special interest of the building, and thus Arden Mill is considered to fully meet the criteria for listing at the higher grade of II*, in view of the rarity and early date of the mill machinery, and the degree of completeness of the mill site.

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

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