Holme Chapel – SD 873277

This mill, which began work in early 1629, was built by Raffe Highley & partners at a cost of “twelve pounds and some odd money”. In December 1630, however, the Council of the Duchy of Lancaster rescinded the agreements made with Highley & partners and ordered them to quit the works and be given £150 in compensation for their charges. These included the smelt mill, which was to be taken into the King’s use.

Because the hearth was blown by foot-bellows, this mill was a constant source of problems and gave a very poor return on the ore smelted. In one case 2 tons of ore gave only 6.5 cwt of metal, which was a yield of only 16 per cent at a time when at least 50 per cent was expected. The mill had been converted into a store for lead ore by autumn 1631.

Thieveley New Mill

Holme Chapel – SD 878280

Built by Richard Towneley, to serve the King’s mine at Thieveley, this mill was reported as “now beginning to smelt” in December 1632. It closed with the mines in the spring of 1635.

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