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The clumsily named Coultershaw Heritage Site and Beam Pump is a fascinating place if you are into landscape history and industrial archeology; in other words, there is not a great deal to see, but what there is tells an interesting story.

At one time it was on the routes of the Rother Navigation (1794-1888), the Petworth to Chichester Turnpike (1800-1877) and the Mid Sussex Railway Pulborough to Petworth Branch (1859-1966).

There have been various mills at Coultershaw from at least the time of the Domesday Book. Unfortunately the picturesque old seventeenth century mill the burned down in 1923 and was replaced by a hideous steel-framed concrete building. Fortunately this was demolished in 1973, leaving only the beam pump, the sluices and the engine house.

The unusual waterwheel powered Beam Pump was installed alongside the mill in 1782 to provide water for Petworth House and the town. It now powers an impressive fountain.

In the Engine House and elsewhere on the site there is a collection of smaller pumps, mostly from the local area. Also in the Engine House is the 1937 Leyland Engine which provided supplementary power to the mill.

In one of the sluices, an Archimedes screw turbine has been installed which generates up to 15 kW electricity.

If you look under the bridge carrying the former turnpike over Coultershaw Bridge, you can just make out the remains of one of the locks of the Rother Navigation.

On the once busy wharf adjoining the mill various buildings have been restored. These were once used as warehouses and stables. The (much extended) Wharfinger's Cottage is privately owned.

For details of opening times, admission prices, etc. please see the official site.

External Links and References

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The Old Railway Station


Sussex_west Map

A short, pleasant walk beside the river brings you to Petworth Station and the route of the former Pulborough to Midhurst branch of the Mid Sussex Railway.

The station was rebuilt in about 1892 in an unusual wooden colonial style. It closed to passengers in 1955 and to freight traffic in 1966.

It has been lovingly restored by its current owners, along with four Pullman cars that were formerly used as camping coaches down in Marazion, Cornwall. It is now bed and breakfast accommodation.

External Links and References

  • External Links

    • The Old Railway Station
      The official site of the Old Railway Station Bed and Breakfast
    • The Old Railway at Petworth
      Video of owner Gudmund Olafsson talking about the history of the old railway station and the Pullman Carriages.

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