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Sopley Mill - Sopley, Hampshire, UK
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Dragontree
N 50° 46.169 W 001° 46.783
30U E 586049 N 5624900
Quick Description: Sopley Mill is a historic water mill now converted into a popular restaurant with a riverside garden.
Location: Southern England, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 5/21/2011 1:39:05 PM
Waymark Code: WMBH05
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member The Blue Quasar
Views: 2

Long Description:
The official website for Sopley Mill has some interesting history: visit link

'Sopley Mill is a beautiful Grade II listed building situated on the banks of the River Avon in the picturesque village of Sopley.

There was originally a Mill on this site in 1086AD and is subsequently mentioned in the Doomsday Book. Through the centuries, repeated rebuilding took place and finally in 1878, this top floor was added to the existing structure. Whilst the Mill was milling this floor was used as the grain store and there are several traps in this floor, which were used to gravity feed the grain to the workings in the floors below. Grain was raised to this level by means of a hoist located in our kitchen facility and which is now electrically operated.

Milling ceased around 1955 and since then the building has been little used until the present time.

The machinery which is situated in the ground and first floors is in excellent condition with most of the apple wood cogs which comprise the major wheels still largely untouched by the passing of time. We understand the turbine type water wheel located on the river bank is one of only two manufactured in the USA and shipped to this Country. The wheel weighs 3 ½ tons and was hung vertically from the building into the turbulence of the mill stream which provided enough power to drive not only the milling machinery but also a saw mill.

The mill stream itself parts from and rejoins the main River Avon about half a mile up and down stream respectively. The whole stretch is prolific with eels which were trapped under licence and transported live to London where they are considered a delicacy.

The chimney was originally used as an outlet from brick ovens in the ground floor, used either for baking bread or smoking eels.

Surrounding the Mill is an abundance of Wildlife. The Avon is renown for Salmon, Trout and Barbel. The many swans and other birds of the river and meadows enjoy unthreatened freedom in this conservation area, indeed the whole location is the natural habitat of many species of wildlife, including our own house martins which nest in the eaves of the Mill.'

Current Status: Still In Use

Current Use: Restaurant

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