Thursday, 8 April 2010

Llanteg Mills

Spurred on by a suggestion we are now trying to collect information on the old mills of Llanteg - and we will extend that to include Castle Ely Mill - which, although not in our parish is only just over the stream which is our boundary with Ciffig parish.

This will be information as we collect it and probably will be updated and amended as we go along.

Charles F.Shepherd, in his 1933 booklet on Crunwear, notes that there were three mills - Castle Ely Mill, Garness Mill and the Tucking Mill - with Castle Ely being outside the parish.

Garness Mill, a grist mill, is still standing, but has not been working for some years.
During the latter half of the last century (1850s-1890s) the mill was in constant use, the farmers bringing their grain to be ground, and taking the flour etc. away.

CASTLE ELY MILL - corn (now a private house)

From Wikipedia
In most wheel-driven mills, a large gear-wheel called the pit wheel is mounted on the same axle as the water wheel and this drives a smaller gear-wheel, the wallower, on a main driveshaft running vertically from the bottom to the top of the building. This system of gearing ensures that the main shaft turns faster than the water wheel, which typically rotates at around 10 rpm.
The millstones themselves turn at around 120 rpm. They are laid one on top of the other. The bottom stone, called the bed, is fixed to the floor, while the top stone, the runner, is mounted on a separate spindle, driven by the main shaft. A wheel called the stone nut connects the runner's spindle to the main shaft, and this can be moved out of the way to disconnect the stone and stop it turning, leaving the main shaft turning to drive other machinery. This might include driving a mechanical sieve to refine the flour, or turning a wooden drum to wind up a chain used to hoist sacks of grain to the top of the mill house. The distance between the stones can be varied to produce the grade of flour required; moving the stones closer together produces finer flour.
The grain is lifted in sacks onto the sack floor at the top of the mill on the hoist. The sacks are then emptied into bins, where the grain falls down through a hopper to the millstones on the stone floor below. The flow of grain is regulated by shaking it in a gently sloping trough (the slipper) from which it falls into a hole in the center of the runner stone. The milled grain (flour) is collected as it emerges through the grooves in the runner stone from the outer rim of the stones and is fed down a chute to be collected in sacks on the ground or meal floor. A similar process is used for grains such as wheat to make flour, and for maize to make corn meal.

OLD TUCKING MILL - woollen cloth (situated just south of Ledgerland but only a few overgrown ruins remain)

Sketch of Old Garness Mill by Geoff Scott

Photo of Garness Mill outbuildings - taken in 1999 by Tony Brinsden

GARNESS MILL - corn (now a private house) - it was possibly originally named after a person - Gardener.
In Place Names of Pembrokeshire Gardeners Mill was mentioned in 1723, changing its name over the years to Carnos and Garness.

Found in Llanteg Timeline
1844 - 266 inhabitants recorded. A corn mill and mill where coarse cloth is prepared and dyed, a limestone quarry, and a church in ruins with sittings for 200 people.

Mr Shepherd in his 1933 book notes:

A fulling mill from Georg Andreas Böckler's Theatrum Machinarum Novum, 1661

From Story of Tenby by Margaret Davies - Tenby Museum 1979
In 1565 David Griffith, a Llanteg 'fryzemaker' (frieze being a course woollen cloth) was exporting rolls of frieze to Bristol in the ship Katherine of Tenby.

Found in Llanteg Timeline
1844 - 266 inhabitants recorded. A corn mill and mill where coarse cloth is prepared and dyed, a limestone quarry, and a church in ruins with sittings for 200 people.

Mr Shepherd in his 1933 book notes:
'About a hundred years ago (1830s) there was at Ledgerland a Tucking Mill - a water mill used for the making of cloth. This was kept by Mr James Price - his widow died at the ripe age of 102 and is buried in Crunwear churchyard.'
On Llanteg's Tithe Schedule Ledgerland, and a 'cottage' further down the valley were occupied by James Price and owned by Sir Robert Phillips. From the old 1840s map it appears that the entrance to the old mill site would have been more from the Amroth side rather than Llanteg - but it is very difficult to tell.

Place Names of Pembrokeshire
Under Lost Names, we have for Crunwear:
Old fulling mill - mentioned in 1712
There was also mention in 1737 of a Crunwear Mill - but that could be either Garness or the tucking mill.

Reference from Roscoe Howell's publication:
"From mediaeval times until as late as the 1860s, there was a thriving woollen and carding mill, known in its last years as the Factory ... and the remains are still to be seen in the undergrowth, as is the course of the leat which brought the water down from below the woollen mill to power the Earwear corn mill at the bottom of the valley".

The Fulling/Tucking Process - from Wikipedia

Fulling or tucking or walking ("waulking" in Scotland) is a step in woollen clothmaking which involves the cleansing of cloth (particularly wool) to eliminate oils, dirt, and other impurities, and making it thicker. The worker who does the job is a fuller, tucker, or walker. The Welsh word for a fulling mill is pandy. This is used in several place-names.

Fulling involves two processes—scouring and milling (thickening). These are followed by stretching the cloth on great frames known as tenters and held onto those frames by tenterhooks. It is from this process that we derive the phrase being on tenterhooks as meaning to be held in suspense. The area where the tenters were erected was known as a tenterground.
Originally, this literally, was pounding the cloth with the fuller's feet (whence the description of them as 'walkers'), or with hands or a club. From the medieval period, however, it often was carried out in a water mill.

In Roman times, fulling was conducted by slaves standing ankle deep in tubs of human urine and cloth. Urine was so important to the fulling business that urine was taxed. Urine, known as 'wash', was a source of ammonium salts and assisted in cleansing and whitening the cloth.
By the medieval period, fuller's earth had been introduced for use in the process. This is a soft clay-like material occurring in nature as an impure hydrous aluminium silicate. This seems to have been used in conjunction with 'wash'. More recently, soap has been used.

The second function of fulling was to thicken cloth, by matting the fibres together to give it strength and increase waterproofing (felting). This was vital in the case of woollens, made from short staple wool, but not for worsted materials made from long staple wool. After this stage, water was used to rinse out the foul smelling liquor used during cleansing.

Fulling mills
From the medieval period, the fulling of cloth often was undertaken in a water mill, known as a fulling mill, a walk mill, or a tuck mill. In Wales, a fulling mill is called a pandy. In these, the cloth was beaten with wooden hammers, known as fulling stocks. Fulling stocks were of two kinds, falling stocks (operating vertically) that were used only for scouring, and driving or hanging stocks. In both cases the machinery was operated by cams on the shaft of a waterwheel or on a tappet wheel, which lifted the hammer.
Driving stocks were pivotted so that the 'foot' (the head of the hammer) struck the cloth almost horizontally. The stock had a tub holding the liquor and cloth. This was somewhat rounded on the side away from the hammer, so that the cloth gradually turned, ensuring that all parts of it were milled evenly. However, the cloth was taken out about every two hours to undo plaits and wrinkles. The 'foot' was approximately triangular in shape, with notches to assist the turning of the cloth.

The earliest known reference to a fulling mill in France, which dates from about 1086, was discovered in Normandy.[4] The earliest reference in England occurs in the Winton Domesday of 1117-19. Other early references belonged to the Knights Templar by 1185.
These mills became widespread during the thirteenth century and occur in most counties of England and Wales, but were largely absent in areas only engaged in making worsteds.

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