Saltford Brass Mill Project
Copyright (C) 2010 Saltford Brass Mill Project. All Rights Reserved
In 2012, a tree fell on the mill, causing damage to the roof. This had been repaired by B&NES, but served as a wake-up call
to inspect the state of the mill.
A structural survey identified that a number of tie-beams, rafters and pillars which
support the roof had weakened with age.
It was also considered that the electrical system was not fit for purpose considering the damp
conditions which are prevalent in the mill.
Councillor Paul Crossley, the leader of B&NES Council, and Councillor David Bellotti, B&NES Cabinet Member for resources,
paid a special visit to the Brass Mill on the 20th January 2015 to mark the completion of a £50K Renovation Project carried out by
The project included:
- The complete re-wiring of the mill, to bring the electrical system up
to modern standards for equipment exposed to the damp conditions prevalent in the mill.
- Installation of a steel tie-beam in the
Dynamo Room to support the roof, taking the load off the original timber tie-beam, which had weakened with age.
of three pillars in the Rolling Mill to support wall-plates and tie-beams, taking the load off original pillars which had weakened
- Instalation of a new rafter in the Rolling Mill to take the load off an original rafter which had weakened with age, the
original being a roughly hewn quarter trunk of a small tree.
- Installation of steel flitch plates to strengthen the connection
of tie-beams to wall-plates and walls, where the tie-beams had weakened with age and been subject to rot.
renovation has been carried out with great sympathy for the nature of the building and its historical importance. The philosophy
adopted has been to retain all original structure and materials where possible. Where the original structures were weak and
considered unable to continue to perform their required duty for the foreseeable future, new materials have been introduced to take
the load. But in such cases the new materials have been introduced alongside the original, making it clearly evident what
is new structure and what is original; hence the observer can see the original intent of the mill's builders.
£50K is the biggest investment in the Brass Mill for almost 20 years. This means that the Brass Mill can open again to visitors and
it is explaining the history of the Mill to visitors which motivates the volunteer team.
Councillors Paul Crossley and David Bellotti with members of the Saltford Brass Mill Project, on completion of the Restoration Project
in January 2015
Why was the Renovation Required?
Saltford Mill has a long history. The buildings were adapted in the early 1700s to manufacture brass battery-ware, and
parts of the mill pre-date this conversion. She is therefore a very old lady in need of Tender Loving Care!
In 1995, English
Heritage undertook extensive conservation work, which included conserving and rebuilding the roof and rewiring of the mill, but
the mill has been subject to the forces of nature over the past 20 years making it necessary to carry out further renovation work.
Undermining of a brick pillar caused by rot of the timber sleeper on which it sat, uncovered in 2013.
Fallen Tree. Saltford Brass Mill. 29 April 2012.