Acorn Bank Mill
Temple Sowerby, Penrith, Cumbria, CA10 1SP. Tel: 017683 61893
There has been a mill on this site for hundreds of years, through the current building dates from the first half of the 19th Century. The mill belonged to the Acorn Bank Estate also known as Temple Sowerby Manor, and the millar was a tenant. Restoration of the mill building, which was derelict, began in the late 1980s, the later restoration of the machinery has been completed by a team of volunteers, who run the mill on most weekend afternoons, the mill now produces flour again after a gap of at least 70 years and the flour is sold in the National Trust shop and used in the tearoom.
The millrace is a channel bringing water from the weir, a quarter of a mile above the mill. The water is taken from Crowdundle Beck to give a head of about 13 feet of water to drive the waterwheels. The kiln which is still to be renovated is where the grain (mainly oats) would be dried before milling. The mill has four pairs of millstones in line, two being driven by each waterwheel. There were once three 12 ft diameter waterwheels in line, though only one is currently working. The upper wheel is a pitchback, and the other two were both overshot. There is a barn and yard, where traditionally the miller would have kept pigs, fed on waste from the mill.
The mill is in the grounds of Acorn Bank estate, which contains Acorn Bank House and Gardens, renowned for their collection of culinary and medicinal plants. There is a National Trust Shop, a tearoom and there are interesting plants for sale.
The mill is owned by the National Trust
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