at the Grimshaw Location in Eccleshill
Perhaps fittingly (given the depth of involvement of the family in the early development of the Industrial Revolution), the original Grimshaw location in Eccleshill was given over to an industrial site at an early date, first as a water-powered cotton mill in 1782 and then as a paper mill from 1872 to 1999. The paper mill is now closed, but an adjacent envelope factory continues in operation.
The earliest industry at the Grimshaw location in Eccleshill was apparently started there in order to take advantage of the water power of Grimshaw Brook for processing cotton. Development at the location began in about 1782, when a water-powered carding and spinning factory was built. Steam power was later added, and the mill was used for processing cotton until 1872.
The 1846 Ordnance Survey “Six-Inch” map shows Grimshaw Bridge crossing Grimshaw Brook, and Grimshaw Bridge Factory (Cotton) is shown just east of the brook (on the Pickup Bank side). Another cotton mill, Water Side Mill, is shown about one-half mile upstream from Grimshaw, and other mills can also be seen on the map.
Apparently the power loom riots of April 26 to 28, 1826 (see companionwebpage) reached the Grimshaw cotton mill, as described in the following newspaper article1 (see last paragraph and, in particular, the second to last sentence):
In 1872, the old cotton mill site was converted to a paper mill. A large envelope factory, called Grimshaw Brook Mill, was added after World War II. The paper mill has been closed (but remains standing), apparently in 1999, but the envelope operation is still active. A “backside” photoof the envelope factory and paper mill from Belthron is given on another webpage. A picture of the Grimshaw Brook Mill is shown near the bottom of this webpage.
Additional detail on the history of the industrial use of the Grimshaw location for a cotton mill and paper mill is given in the description1 of the industrial archeology of Darwen, Eccleshill and surrounding area; the site description is given at the bottom of this webpage.
The company that operated the paper mill placed two historical pieces of paper-making equipment still at Lower Grimshaw; they are shown near the bottom of this webpage, below the Grimshaw Brook Mill photo. The piece at the entrance to the site is a “Kollergang Stone”, dating from about 1900, which is described as follows on a sign below the stone:
This stone was used for grinding wastepaper and rag pulp in preparation for the early process of paper manufacture. It was part of the original equipment at the Waterside Paper Mill, Darwen, Lancs. when this mill was purchased by Chapman & Co (Balham) Limited in 1937.
The equipment near the building is a paper making cylinder which is described as follows:
This M.G. paper making cylinder was manufactured in 1888 by Bentley & Jackson Ltd., Bury, and is believed to be the oldest cylinder of its kind in the world. Originally supplied to a Mr. J.L. Hastings. No records are available of its history till 1931 when Henry Cooke & Co (1932) Ltd. took over “The Falls Paper Mills” at Milnthorpe, Westmorland where it was already installed. In 1940 it was acquired by “The New Waterside Paper Mills Ltd.” and used for making envelope M.G. papers and cellulose wadding continuously throughout the Second World War till 1956 and thereafter as a predryer till 1967.
Another legacy of the industrial heritage of the Grimshaw location – a solid waste landfill that is located on Grimshaw Brook just upstream of the paper mill and envelope factory. A photo of it is included near the bottom of this webpage.
This picture shows the Grimshaw Brook Mill with a former paper-making cylinder in front. Photo taken westward, in March 1999.