Saltford Brass Mill Visit

  1. sbn_admin
  2. 20/07/2017 1:29 PM

Saltford Brass Mill Visit

SBN VISITS THE BRASS MILL

Business Network colleagues recently enjoyed a fascinating visit to Saltford Brass Mill.  Network member Patrick Beazley, one of the guides at the Brass Mill, led us through story of the brass industry which was so important not only in Saltford, but the whole Avon valley region, throughout the 18th and 19th centuries.  We heard about Quaker merchants in Bristol identifying markets, sponsoring innovative technical developments, overcoming supply chain challenges and attracting skilled workers from Europe.  On the down side, their trade included shipping slaves across the Atlantic from West Africa to the Americas and importation of sugar, tobacco and cotton from the plantations there.

Inside the Mill we saw the full-scale model of one of the 12 hammers that once operated here shaping the “hollow ware” (brass pans, vats and kettles), the unique surviving annealing furnace, the last of four which stood here, and the turntable which would have enabled rapid handling of material.  We heard of the market changes that led to a shift to rolling of sheet brass and the subsequent importance of brass wire and pin production.  We saw the 18ft 3in iron waterwheel powering the 20th century dynamo and workshop tools and understood how these later applications led to the preservation of the mill for today’s community to enjoy and learn from.

SBN group left the mill for the Bird in Hand Public House to enjoy the rest of the evening and reflect on our new understanding of local industry and commerce in a different era.

You can find out more about Saltford Brass Mill, including opening times, at www.brassmill.com

 

Kevin Reeves, Chair of Saltford Business Network

Contact Us
Address
Unit 4 The Old Mill
Mead Lane
Saltford
Bristol
BS31 3ER