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Hampshire Map

As a photographer you come to expect old industrial buildings to have a fairly restricted palette of colours. Brick and wood, cast iron painted black, dark green or occasionally red and the odd bit of brass.

Whitchurch Silk Mill is not like that. Silks of all different colours are everywhere, making the place look like some sort of three dimensional paint chart.

Although there is evidence of a building on this site in around 1730, it was under William Maddick, the copyholder from 1817 to 1844, that the mill assumed its current form, and that silk weaving is believed to have commenced.

It passed through many hands until 1985-1990 when it was bought and restored by the Hampshire Buildings Preservation Trust. They passed it to the Whitchurch Silk Mill Trust, and it is still very much a working mill concentrating on short runs and highly specialised fabrics.

The mill is on three floors. The top floor houses the bobbin and pirn winders and the warping frame; the middle floor is almost entirely given over to the tea rooms, whilst the ground floor houses the looms and can only be viewed through a large glass window.

The waterwheel is housed in a wooden lean-to and is believed to have been made around 1890 by Arnfield of Ringwood.

For opening times, admission prices, etc. please see the official site detailed below.