Warmington Mill In The Evening

Warmington Mill

For over a thousand years the Nene valley has been the location of much farming activity particularly the growing of corn and wheat. During medieval times the area was the bread basket of England. The land either side of the river is rich and fertile and the river provided the power required to drive the many water mills located along its length. Locally there are water mills at Barnwell (now a public house), Cotterstock (now private homes), Eaglethorpe and Elton. The mill at Warmington is recorded in the Doomsday Book.

The prosperity of the area during medieval times also supported a number of windmills. Excavations of a small clay mound near the Tansor cross roads in 1995 found the slots of the foundations of a post mill. It is believed the mill was only used for a few decades in the mid 13th century. The lack of timber impressions seem to indicate the mill had been dismantle rather than left to decay.

Warmington mill is located in the Hamlet of Eaglethorpe. On early maps the area is called Mill End. The present mill building is thought to vary in date from the 19th century (the northern half) to the early 1900s. It is constructed from stone, comprises three floors and included two water wheels and millstones. This twin water wheel arrangement is clearly shown on the parish survey plan of 1621.

In an architectural survey of the village conducted in 1937, J W Bloe states,’There is a wheel to the northern mill-race and the remains of one to the southern, while south of each are the hexagonal drums or casings for the grinding machinery, the southern derelict’. The single mill stone continued in operation until 1958 when the miller, Matthew Hayes retired. He is also noted as the occupier of the mill in J W Bloe’s survey of 1937. In the late 1990s a fire destroyed the roof and much of the timber work in the building.