Farfield Mill MYD36647 (c) YDNPA, 2023
Farfield was built in 1837 by Joseph Dover who spun wool for the knitting trade and wove and processed woollen textiles there. The family continued to run the business for over 100 years before they sold the mill on. The mill was never used to full capacity again. During the Second World War it was used for the manufacture of crankshafts for Airspeed Oxford Trainer planes and a brick built air raid shelter survives near the main building. The mill had a brief revival between the 1960s and 80s when first Mealbank Woollens took the mill over and then a man named David Douglas started weaving woollens again under the trade name of Pennine Tweeds. He trained up Bryan Hinton to use the remaining 1934 Dobcross looms and Bryan and his wife Carol then took over the business, weaving wool and mohair goods such as fine quality rugs and shawls. The end came in 1992 when the Hintons gave up the business and the last piece of woollen cloth was woven on the great looms at the end of October of that year. The main mill building and two Dobcross looms were rescued by the Sedbergh & District Building Preservation Trust in the late 1990s and the site now houses an Arts and Heritage Centre. The main mill building is a four-storey stone built building with about 20,000 square feet of floor space. Many of the original iron support pillars and the oil soaked wooden floors survive. There are four other industrial buildings on the site including a two-storey building sited alongside the river and two finishing buildings dating from 1893.Two other buildings have been converted into private houses including one known as the ‘Smithy’. A short row of millworkers cottages known as ‘The Row’ are contemporary with the main mill buildings.
Giles, C & Goodhall, Ian H (1992) Yorkshire Textile Mills: The Buildings of the Yorkshire Textile Industry 1770-1930. London: HMSO
www.farfieldmill.org/history.htm – a short history of the mill
Location Take A684 to Dent and Garsdale east of Sedbergh. Mill lies just off road after about a mile. Signed 'Farfield Mill Arts and Heritage Centre'. See www.farfieldmill.org/ for opening times and entry charges.
Public Transport Details Nearest town/village: Sedbergh. Call Traveline on 0870 608 2 608 to plan your journey. After the welcome message key in 874 for Cumbria information.
Accessibility Lifts, adapted toilets and designated parking bays. See website for details - www.farfieldmill.org/