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HER Number:MDV8262
Name:Batworthy Mill, Chagford

Summary

A corn mill has existed at Batworthy since at least the 15th century, although Rice (2002) suggests it could have pre-Saxon origins. The mill ceased working in the early 20th century and most of the extant buildings are relatively modern, although some older machinery is said to survive. In the late 1960s there were remains of the old buildings and of pieces of the wheel and machinery, and water still ran in the leat. There are at least six bee boles in the south wall. Batworthy Mill is one of the three properties referred to as Batworthy at the end of the 18th century.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 713 852
Map Sheet:SX78NW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishChagford
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishCHAGFORD

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX78NW/32
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II): 94533

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CORN MILL (First mentioned, XV - 1401 AD to 1499 AD (Between))

Full description

Harris, H., 1968, Industrial Archaeology of Dartmoor, 193 (Monograph). SDV149229.

Batworthy Mill, a former corn mill by the River Bovey, has been disused for about 50 years. There are remains of the old buildings and of pieces of the wheel and machinery, and water still runs in the leat.

Devon County Council, 1974, Survey of Watermills in Devon: Gazetteer (Report - Survey). SDV83967.

(estimated 1973) 18th century or earlier cornmill. Ceased working as a gristmill in 1900s. Building has three storeys. Two overshot tandem waterwheels in same pit. Dilapidated. One of iron, other of wood. Iron pipe supplying wheel remains. Unusually large pit wheel. Most other machinery missing. One wheel worked a threshing machine.
There are at least six beeboles in the south wall (P. Beacham, personal comment).

Hayter-Hames, J., 1981, A History of Chagford, 19, 85, 97, (Monograph). SDV363357.

Batsworthy Mill and Rushford Mill were both in existence in the 15th century, but both have been considerably altered since. Batworthy mill appears to have ground corn for the moorland areas of the parish and took water from the River Bovey.

Department of Environment, 1987, Chagford, 4 (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV350463.

Batworthy Mill. Pair of grist mills. Granite stone rubble with large roughly-dressed granite quoins; slate roof. Two overshot water wheels. Both mills have a basement, a stone floor and top storage floor. To rear an open-fronted extension added in 19th century. Both are 18th/19th century. Contain plain carpentry detail. Casements without glazing bars. Roof structural features. One mill contain some cast iron machinery.

Thorp, J. + Cox, J., 1994, Batworthy Farm, Chagford, 9-10 (Report - Survey). SDV347507.

Batworthy Mill is one of the three properties referred to as Batworthy at the end of the 18th century. It belonged to Joseph Rowe in 1781 and was called Higher Batworthy at this time, and the Batworthy Mills in 1782, when the tenant was William Heard. In 1786 Joseph Rowe occupied the mill himself, but by 1788 ownership passed to a Mr Coombe and from 1789-1797 it was first occupied by John Nickels, then James Coombe.
From 1800-1806 the mill was let to Robert Tremblett by William Coombe and land tax was reduced to £1. 0. 8.
In 1806 it was divided into three. One part went to John Brock who let it to Robert Ellis (this property is still called Batworthy on the tithe award); another part, Coney Park, was both owned and occupied by William Ellis. The third part, the mill, was owned by Daniel Frost and occupied by James Collins and was assessed for tax in 1806 and until 1832 at 8s 6d because of the reduction in accompanying land.
In 1815 James Collins acquired ownership of the mill. By 1830 Collins had also become the tenant of the other two properties at Batworthy. The Collins family owned the whole of the hamlet between 1830-c.1880; by 1881, William Cuming was at Batworthy Mill and Keystone give no further detail regarding the mill.

Rice, I., 2002, The Book of Chagford. A Town Apart, 40 (Monograph). SDV356605.

Batworthy Mill (where machinery is still extant) is likely to be of ancient origin. It occupies a stretch of water with a relatively steep fall (typical of early mills); it used a simple undershot wheel working directly in the stream, avoiding the need for extensive impounding works and the construction of leats/launders. Its remoted location is also typical of early mills; later mills were generally built at more accessible sites. Rice believes it possible that the mill at Batworthy may be of very ancient origin (potentially pre-Saxon), as its location is adjacent to some of the earliest areas of settlement on the edge of the moor (both Chagford and North Bovey parishes).
The existing installation at Batworthy is relatively modern, although remains of older machinery still exists. It is driven by a still flowing leat from the Bovey and a modern wheel has been installed for power generation purposes.

Ordnance Survey, 2018, MasterMap 2018 (Cartographic). SDV360652.

'Batworthy Mill (disused)' is shown on the modern mapping.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV149229Monograph: Harris, H.. 1968. Industrial Archaeology of Dartmoor. Industrial Archaeology of Dartmoor. A5 Hardback. 193.
SDV347507Report - Survey: Thorp, J. + Cox, J.. 1994. Batworthy Farm, Chagford. Keystone Historic Buildings Consultants Report. K412. A4 Comb Bound. 9-10.
SDV350463List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1987. Chagford. Historic Houses Register. A4 Bound. 4.
SDV356605Monograph: Rice, I.. 2002. The Book of Chagford. A Town Apart. The Book of Chagford. Hardback Volume. 40.
SDV360652Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2018. MasterMap 2018. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.
SDV83967Report - Survey: Devon County Council. 1974. Survey of Watermills in Devon: Gazetteer. Devon County Council Report. Unknown. A4 Bound.

Associated Monuments

MDV33194Related to: Barn, Batworthy Farm (Building)
MDV33193Related to: Batworthy Farmhouse, Chagford (Building)
MDV77127Related to: Batworthy farmstead, Chagford (Monument)
MDV33205Related to: Bee boles south of Batworthy Mill (Building)
MDV33195Related to: Cider house, (former farmhouse) Batworthy Farm (Building)
MDV8259Related to: Rushford Corn Mill, Chagford (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded


Date Last Edited:Nov 29 2019 10:56AM