Owler Bars Mill, Meltham

Owler Bars Mill was a mill situated on Mill Moor Road in Meltham, and between Lower Sunny Bank Mill and Albion Mill.


The mill was built in 1794, with a weir erected in 1801.[1]

Owner James Dawson's bankruptcy led to the auction of the mill in July 1820:[2]

A Valuable FREEHOLD ESTATE, situate at Meltham aforesaid, in the Occupation of the said James Dawson, consisting of Two newly-erected Messuages, or Dwelling-Houses, Dyehouse, Tenter Stove, Barn, and other Outbuildings. Also, Four Closes of LAND adjoining, in excellent Condition, containing about Eight Days' Work. The above present an eligible Opportunity to any Person wishing to commence the Blue Dying Business, the Premises being supplied with a never-failing Streat of Water, and in the Centre of a Manufacturing adjoining, situate at Owler Bars, in Meltham aforessaid, now or late in the Occupation of the said James Dawson ; held at a certain Rent, under a Lease of Eleven Years, nearly Seven Years whereof remain expired.

Owler Bars Mill was advertised to let or lease by Meltham clothier John Sykes in September 1859. It was described as "spinning, scribbling and fulling mill,"[3]

The following year, on 1 November 1860, the mill was placed up for auction:[4]

TO BE SOLD BY AUCTION, by Mr. THORNTON, at the house of Mr. John Bray, the Rose and Crown Inn, in Meltham, on Thursday, the 1st of November, 1860, at Six o'clock in the evening, subject to such conditions as shall be then and there produced, in the following Lots:

Lot 1 — ALL that Valuable FULLING MILL at Owler Bars, the Meltham aforesaid, called Owler Bars Mill, with the Willow Room, Mule Room (nearly new), Dyehouse, Dyeware Room and Outbuildings, belonging thereto, together with the Waterwheel, Water Power, and Going Gear ; and also the Mill Dam, Goit Weir, and Shuttles. Also, all those Five COTTAGES or DWELLING-HOUSES, with the Barn, Stable, Outbuildings, Yard, and Garden adjoining thereto, situate at Owlers Bars aforesaid, now or late in the several occupations of Messrs. James and Joseph Sykes and others, containing together with the following Closes of LAND, namely —

The Croft or Mill Field
The Back o'th House Close or Lower Intake
The Middle Close or Middle Intake
The Top Shuttle Close or Upper Intake

Lots 2 — All that Allotment or Parcel of LAND, at Bunker's Hill, in Meltham aforesaid, with frontages to the road and river.

Lots 3 — All those Three Closes of LAND, situate at Coal Pits, in Meltham aforesaid, and adjoining upon the Brow Grains Road, in the occupation of Messrs. John and Joseph Sykes.

Owler Bars Mill adjoins upon the Mill Moor Road, and is very conveniently situated for occupation. The mill is turned by water power, having a fall of 22 feet, with a large impounding reservoir. There is also a steam-engine on the premises, belonging to the late tenant, which can be taken at valuation.

The property, in the hands of an enterprising party, may easily be converted into one of the most complete manufactories in the neighbourhood, and affords an excellent opportunity for establishing and carrying on a lucrative business, having cheap power and plenty and water.

By 1876, it appears Owler Bars Mill was linked to the Meltham Gas Company.[5]

In 1905, together with Albion Mill, the freehold of Owler Bars Mill was advertised.[6]

The mill was marked as "disused" on the 1930s O.S. map.



Notes and References

  1. Underground Histories: A Catalogue of the Textile Mills and Factories of the Huddersfield Area c. 1790-1914 by Alan Brooke
  2. Leeds Intelligencer (17/Jul/1820).
  3. "To Be Let" in Huddersfield Chronicle (24/Sep/1859).
  4. "Sales by Auction" in Huddersfield Chronicle (20/Oct/1860).
  5. "Sales by Private Contract" in Huddersfield Chronicle (06/May/1876).
  6. Huddersfield Examiner (20/May/1905).