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Can anyone help me please ? When did our forebears
stop using quern stones to grind corn, and build water
mills ? There is a long ancient history of Water Mills, seems they were slow being built in this country.
I am doing a project AD.1085 - 1310 on a nearby village.
A 'Mill' is marked on the map after it was moved from the other side of the river. The road leading through the village is marked as 'Pipe Lane'. Researching water mills
I have found a ditch or leat was dug out to route water from the actual river to power these original water mills. Which were really just a huge paddle wheel on the side of a very robust hut. Someone has made a model of one, its on IT.
I am thinking now the people must have been very excited about this original Mill, to have named the track Pipe Lane. I thought it was someone's name, so I got excited when I found out about the 'pipe' or 'flume'.
They would have been able to grind their corn/wheat much more easily, when the Mill was built.
So when did this happen ?



Hi Diane, I don't seem to get a definitive answer, as to when people started using water mills, but they have been recorded since the first century BC, and at the time the doomesday book was written, { 1087 }, there were 5,624 water mills recorded in England, I hope this is of some help to you.
It sounds a very interesting topic, sorry I can't be of more help, Derek.

12 Feb, 2014


They date from the Iron Age according to the British Museum. You might find something on the Open University website - they used to run a history of industrialisation/technology course.

12 Feb, 2014


Thank you very much everyone. I once rode past one on a cycle tour, it was a derelict stone built building. I knew
it was a Water Mill, didnt know about the 'pipe' or 'flume'
aspect, or that the road down to my village was called
'Pipe Lane' - found that on the satellite map - then wondered who Mr Pipe was !
All good fun finding a name 1,000 years old.
When I went into our local museum and asked the girl
on the desk if they had any Romano-British pottery
upstairs, she said "No, only local ones."
I knew about
the Roman invasion when I was 14.

13 Feb, 2014


That's priceless, Diane! "Invaders and Settlers" must have been a National Curriculum module when she was in Primary School!

Local history is a fascinating topic, and maps are a wonderful resource (I am something of a map addict). I'm sure you are enjoying your research.

14 Feb, 2014


How can an academic interest in your own country be
'priceless' ?

18 Feb, 2014


I meant the girl's remark about the Romano-British pottery, Diane!

18 Feb, 2014

How do I say thanks?

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