"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."

From "Auguries of Innocence"

by William Blake

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

New Hall Mill and Meadow

We paid a visit to New Hall Mill on Bank Holiday Monday as it was an Open Day. There has been a mill on the site since the sixteenth century although the present building dates from the 18th. It is one of only 2 water mills still surviving in the Birmingham area. The other is Sarehole Mill which I have done several posts on in the past. Some of you may remember that I first discovered New Hall Mill last year and its a lovely place to spend a few hours.

The Mill, a Grade 2 Listed Building, is privately owned and managed by the New Hall Water Mill Preservation Trust. It was restored in the 1970's.

The Overshot water wheel drives two pairs of French Burr Mill Stones producing stone ground wholemeal flour for demonstration purposes. A Ruston and Hornsby diesel engine installed in 1949 runs a combined milling machine and sack hoist.

We had a look round the Mill first of all.

Reconstruction of the Miller's Workshop

There's a pretty little walk along the side of the mill pool where you can watch Grey Wagtails which nest close by.

The Miller's Garden

The Organ Grinder was there again this year.

Model of the Mill in the small museum and shop

I left B and D enjoying tea and cake (I missed out again!!) whilst I had a look round the meadow and tree trail.

Campion and Cow Parsley in the hedgerow.

Hawthorn is flowering in every hedgerow at the moment.

There are several pools and a stream in the meadow area.

Buttercups and Yellow Flag

Cow Parsley en masse

I was recently looking at a post on a pollinator meadow in Chateau Moorhen's Blog (so sorry I can't insert links on the basic blogger I use but please see a link to her blog under "My Blog List" on the right) where she had posted a photo which she had taken using Intentional Camera Movement where you use a slow shutter speed and move the camera as you take the picture to create an artistic effect. I've tried this before with fireworks but not with flowers and Cow Parsley seemed a good subject.

Clumps of Wild Garlic were flowering by the stream.

Buttercup Meadow

I bought a few plants home with me - Sweet Woodruff (trying to find a nice shady place for it in our garden) and Veronica gentianoides. If I can find room I might put them both in the rockery.

Apologies for smudges in the top right hand corner of some of the photos - I had forgotten to clean the lens after it covered with raindrops at Bakewell!!

I've had a bit of a bad back this week :( but if its better hoping to go to a rather promising looking butterfly reserve in the next few days. In fact, I'm off now to try and learn some of the basic controls on the Canon bridge!!


Margaret Adamson said...

Hope you back gets better son. This place was a very interesting place to explore both inside and around the lovely gardens. Your photos illustrates is very well. A great day out for you to enjoy.. I hope you get to see and photograph the butterflies.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the mention - I like the cow parsley shot like that - great effect! There's something romantic about old water mills, isn't there? This looks like a great place to visit, with all the things that a gardener and wildlife lover will love, especially cake loving ones! Can't beat a mix of cultivated garden with wildflower areas, and water! Really enjoyed my virtual tour. :-)

Ragged Robin said...

Margaret Adamson - Thanks very much Margaret. I might try and go back on my own one day so I can get more photos of the meadow and eat cake :)

Anonymous - Thanks so much. Sorry couldn't put an actual link within the post but for some reason I have never been able to get it to work! The meadow area is lovely - will be better in a few weeks when more flowers appear :) Not sure about the cow parsley shot myself - have problems with photos that all blurred working out if any good or not!!

Millymollymandy said...

Lol, why did I turn out anonymous?! You knew it was me, Mandy, I think. :-)
It's automatically set that I post as MMM. How odd!

Ragged Robin said...

Millymollymandy - lol :) Yes I guessed it was you :) I assumed you had perhaps posted a comment without being signed in but if its automatically set that really is strange!!

amanda peters said...

Lovely post RR, both inside and out side.The sings are a very good idea. I have been wondering if I could grow some wild cow parsley at the bottom of my garden, have to say I love this plant. I used to live next to a paper mill, lots of good memories as a child playing, as we had the river running along side the garden, sadly it has all been knocked down.

David Turner said...

Mills are fascinating places aren't they, whether they be wind or water powered, and when they are in such delightfully rural locations they are quite idyllic places to spend a few hours aren't they. They also show how industry & nature used to exist comfortably side-by-side.

I liked the model of the museum too and if it was built to the correct scale it would make a lovely addition to a model railway :-)

Hope your back is feeling better and kindest regards to all :-)

Ragged Robin said...

Amanda Peters - Thanks so much Amanda. I don't see why you shouldn't be able to grow cow parsley - it would make a lovely addition to a garden. I've seen it growing on verges alongside main roads in suburban areas and in parks. Would love to hear how you get on with it. Such a shame so many buildings that are part of our heritage are knocked down :(

David Turner - Thanks very much David. Yes, I too enjoy mills of all kinds - such a lovely link to the past especially when they are restored and working :) I very much agree with your comment about industry and nature existing side-by-side :)

I think the model may well have been the right scale for a model railway :)

Back a lot better today thanks. Not 100% yet though - just aches when I stand or walk about for lengthy periods butjust trying to ignore it!!

Best wishes to you and your family David.

Chris Rohrer said...

I love mills. They are such interesting places. We don't have any down here in Arizona. Hoping the back is back to full strength again. Nothing worse than back aches!

Ragged Robin said...

Chris Rohrer - Thanks Chris - yes, Mills are great - so evocative of times past :) Yes, back is fine now thanks. I managed to strain a muscle twice in a couple of weeks :(