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Lade And Sluice Gate, Bucket Mill, Finzean

A Category A Listed Building in Birse, Aberdeenshire

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Latitude: 57.01 / 57°0'36"N

Longitude: -2.6972 / 2°41'49"W

OS Eastings: 357756

OS Northings: 791202

OS Grid: NO577912

Mapcode National: GBR WV.DG5K

Mapcode Global: WH7NY.J2VC

Plus Code: 9C9V2863+24

Entry Name: Lade And Sluice Gate, Bucket Mill, Finzean

Listing Name: Finzean, Bucket Mill, Including Sawmill, Lade, Weir, Sluice Gate, Kiln, Stable and Cart House (Shop), and Cottage

Listing Date: 16 April 1971

Category: A

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 334082

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB3100

Building Class: Cultural

ID on this website: 200334082

Location: Birse

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Banchory and Mid Deeside

Parish: Birse

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

Tagged with: Architectural structure

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1853. Mill buildings predominantly timber-farmed with vertically boarded timber cladding, on granite rubble base course; kiln and mill cottage harl-poined granite rubble with tooled dressings and long and short quoins. Boarded timber doors; corrugated-iron and steel roofs.


Predominantly boarded timber lade flowing from W to E off Water of Feugh, to S of mill buildings, driving Bucket Mill wheel. Sluice to W of wheel controlled by beam with chain controlled from inside Bucket Mill. Weir and sluice to W of site controlling flow of water from River Feugh.


Single storey and attic, 3-bay, L-plan Bucket Mill with Sawmill adjoining.

N Elevation: asymmetrical; gabled bay advanced to left, door to left of ground floor flanked by 9-pane window to right, boarded timber opening surmounted by window set in gablehead. Roof swept down over sawmill to flanking bays to right, ramp to right, flanked by slatted timber openings.

W Elevation: near-symmetrical; granite rubble flue capped with brick, advanced through ground and attic floors, flanked to left and right by windows at ground and attic floors; sawmill adjoining to left with opening to centre.

S Elevation: asymmetrical; 13'6" timber start and awe wheel with double cast-iron frame on corrugated steel faced bay to right; 2 window openings flanking to left. Timber walkway to outer right crossing lade to wheel.

E Elevation: asymmetrical; gabled bay to left with window to ground and 1st floors, door off-centre to left at basement leading to mill wheel workings. 2 windows to flanking bays to right.

Variety of small-pane replacement windows with timber frames. Gablehead stack to W.

Interior: Bucket Mill and Sawmill machinery survives in good working order.


Small, single storey, rectangular-plan kiln to N of Bucket Mill, boarded timber gables. Boarded timber ramp to S, leading to door; cast-iron fire box access below ramp. Brick gablehead stack to N with circular can. Interior: fire box runs length of Kiln, surmounted by slatted floor.


To NW of Bucket Mill. Single storey, rectangular-plan stable (used as shop when mill was open to public). Door to centre of E elevation, flanked by irregularly placed windows. Boarded timber opening set in gablehead to N. Window to left of W elevation. 2 windows to S elevation. Timber framed windows.


To N of Kiln on opposite side of valley road. Single storey and attic, 3-bay, rectangular-plan cottage.

S (Entrance) Elevation: symmetrical; gableted, boarded timber porch, with latticed gable to centre of ground floor, panelled timber door, surmounted by tooled datestone reading "P.B. 1855" (Peter Brown); window to each flanking bay; 2 boarded timber gableted dormers to left and right bays of attic floor.

E Elevation: gabled, blank.

N Elevation: not seen 1999.

W Elevation: asymmetrical; gabled; base of flue advanced at ground floor, flanked to left by window.

Modern timber-framed glazing with top hoppers to ground floor, timber sash and case windows to attic floor. Purple-grey slate roof with tiled ridge. Stone skews. Coped granite gablehead stacks with circular and octagonal cans. Cast-iron rainwater goods.

Interior: not seen 1999.

Statement of Interest

A-Group with Finzean Sawmill and Turning Mill, Mill of Clinter and Cottage to S of Mill of Clinter (see separate listings). The Finzean Bucket Mill on the N bank of the River Feugh, is a rare and remarkable survival in full working order. The sites of the Bucket Mill and the Sawmill and Turning Mill a mile to the E (see separate listing) were established as sawmills in the early 19th century to exploit the Glen Ferrick pine woods. The original sawmill was sold off in pieces at a roup in 1846 and the site was cleared. In 1853 Peter Brown, redeveloped the former mill site and waterfall to form the Bucket Mill. His family worked the mill until the death of Willie Brown, the last in the line, in 1974. The mill lay empty and became derelict until it was taken on by Stan Moyes in 1982, who began to restore the mill, which was opened to the public in 1990. In 1991 the newly formed Finzean Water Mills Trust became the owner of the Bucket Mill. The Water Mills trust was wound up in 1999, and the ownership of the Bucket Mill passed to Birse Community Trust. The Bucket Mill is still operated by Stan Moyes on a part time basis. A small number of buckets are produced annually for a range of uses. During the Second World War the buckets were in high demand by the Navy and RAF, among others. Indeed "it was considered such an essential task by the Government that he [the mill worker] was exempted service with the armed forces" (Cunningham, p10).

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