This is a photo taken today from the wooden bridge going over the Wandle, just off Mill Lane, facing Papermill Close.
🗝 If you were standing on this bridge nearly 100 years ago you would have seen this view of the Grove Mill Ironworks, roughly where the buildings are in the background. The wooden mill was built in the 1770s and converted to an ironmill in the 1860s (before this, grinding amongst other things, you guessed it, snuff)
🗝 The aerial shot of the ironworks is dated 1935. The water at the bottom of the photo is the stream (at that time, technically a mill pond) that still sometimes runs alongside the Westcoft. The mill utilised an ‘overshot’ mill wheel (where the water is fed from the top and flows forward. It doesn’t need a rapid flow, making it very efficient, and perfect for Carshalton conditions)
🗝 Ironworks used water to power tools and heat furnaces to build things made of iron, in this case patented products such as early car engines (specifically for this Hyler Whyte – the world’s first kit-car from 1900) and steam-driven pumps etc.
🗝 Here’s a shot today of the nearly empty stream that fed the water-powered mill, plus roughly the same view from the 1910s which shows the Ironworks chimney in the background.
🗝 The building burnt down in the 1940s, and of course, most of the old buildings have now been completely demolished. Nearby Ansells snuff mill on Butter Hill bridge is the only survivor.
*I aim to get the facts as accurate as possible, but can’t be sure, as I write these quickly. If you have further clarifications or found this interesting, please enter your comment below. Thanks.