Monday 4th September 2023

Monday 4th September 2023

Kirklees Brook Mill Trail (First of Two Walks)

On a glorious September morning seventeen walkers met at Greenmount Old School for the first of two history walks. We began by walking the short distance down the Kirklees Trial, to Shepherd Street, where we turned left and left again on Holcombe Road. The first of the old mill sites was at the bottom of Brookhouse Lane, where now the modern building of Cormar Carpets occupies the site of Brookhouse Hill.

At the bottom of the lane, we joined a narrow path on our right that took us up to Stormer Hill Fold where we turned left and crossed the fields down Mill Street and the site of the second mill, that of Stormer Hill Works, which is now a cluster of small businesses. We continued down Mill Street we walking as far as the nine arched viaduct, which carried the railway line up to Greenmount and Holcombe, where we joined the path around Island Lodge. The next ruins were those of Tottington Mill, which like most of the mills, in the valley, changed hands and changed processes over the years, with Tottington Mill starting as a spinning mill, and then becoming a print works when Joshua Knowles took over the business.

Island Lodge

Wild life on Island Lodge

Ruins of Tottington Mill

After crossing the metal bridge, on our right, we continued passed one of the mill lodges before turning left and walking around the first of two lodges. Partway round the lodge we joined a narrow path on our left down to Kirklees Brook, where we could see the remains of Kirklees Printworks.

We followed the brook downstream where we eventually re-joined the Kirklees Trail and walked down as far as the new bridge, where after crossing it we joined a narrow footpath on our right that took us back down to the brook. As we were crossing the bridge we could see the site of Throstle Grove Mill, on our left which has now been completely overgrown.

The next mill on our route was that of Olives Paper Mill, which like the other mills in the valley started life as a spinning mill. After turning left through the housing estate we crossed a footbridge and headed along paths onto Bradlesholme Road, where we stopped for our morning coffee break in a small park.

Ruins of Olives Paper Mill

Coffee stop

The route then continued up the road to the start of the Kirklees Trail, where we turned left and walked back across the bridge taking a footpath on our right that took us down a footbridge, at the bottom of the valley. After turning left, we climbed out of the valley and joined a track leading to the Kingsbury estate, which was the site of Kirklees Bleach works. The track took us back over Kirklees brook and passed the ‘Wishing Stone’ and on to Beryl Avenue, where we turned right and walked back to the Kirklees Trail and back to Greenmount having covered 6.5 historic mile.

Wishing Stone

Heading home

A leaflet has been produced giving more details of the route and history of the mills and can be obtained from Christine next time you join one of our walks.