Warwick Bridge Corn Mill – progress update October 2018

 

Works in the watercourse concluded towards the end of September, with steelwork installed to support the ashlar blocks forming the upper part of both sides of the wheel pit.

 

Steel angles bolted into the bedrock on the north side of the wheel pit. The circular opening low down is a drain from the pit wheel pit below the hurst

 

Stonework repairs have continued apace and October has seen dramatic progress with the buildings, including the stripping of the slated barn roof and replacement or strengthening of failed roof timbers.

 

Stripping the graduated slates from the east side of the barn roof

 

Looking along the barn roof timbers from the south end. The change in alignment of the building is evident

 

Steelwork repairs to Truss 3 and replacement rafters between Trusses 3 and 4. The peg securing the tenon at the base of the principal rafter can be seen along with the assembly marks on the timbers

 

Within the barn and mill opening up of floors has revealed the poor condition of a number of the larger supporting timbers which will require repair. Embedded timbers in the barn gable and supporting the barn wall over the wheel pit have required replacement with infill brickwork or stone. A further round of timber treatment for woodworm has been undertaken.

 

The floor beams of the Garner Floor show the curve of the original tree trunk. Assembly marks can be seen alongside the floor joists notched into the beam

Assembly marks alongside original half dovetailed joists with a modern replacement top left

 

Cleaning the Pit Wheel casting template ahead of woodworm treatment

 

Specialists in metalwork conservation have surveyed the structure of the drying kiln floor and made recommendations for conservation and repair. Cleaning the debris from the kiln and the firegrate below revealed more about the form and function of the kiln and the wrought iron floor supports proved more complex than first appreciated.

 

The web of wrought iron which supported the cast iron kiln plates of the kiln floor

 

Looking down on the open top of the fire grate. The large iron plate, which rested on the supporting brackets on the uprights, acted as a baffle to disperse the heat evenly

 

Contact was made with the National Trust in the North West who kindly supplied information on the surviving fixed barn threshing machine at Dunsthwaite, which is thought to date from the 1840’s and gives a good impression of the scale of the machine which was installed in the barn at Warwick Bridge to allow processing of unthreshed grain brought to the mill.

 

Removal of a trial area of unbonded limewash from the north wall of the Hurst Floor of the mill revealed a re-used inscribed stone, apparently reading WILLIAM GAS… 1704.