Medieval Watermill to E of Church, Withybrook

Description of this historic site

The site of a Medieval watermill and a dam that held back the water that powered the mill. The site is known from documentary evidence. The dam survives as an earthwork. It was situated east of the church at Withybrook.

Notes about this historic site

1 A mill and mill pool belonging to Nicholas son of Liulf is recorded between 1188 and 1191. The mill pond is recorded again in 1229 as belonging to Nicholas of Coventry, son of Nicholas son of Liulf.
2 A mill still existed in the parish in 1594 when it was conveyed to Sir John Spencer. Earthworks survive E of the church. A dam, now breached, has left earthen banks, in places 2.4m high, traceable in an arc in a field still known as ‘Dam Style’. Parallel broad channels run downhill from the direction of Home Farm towards the dam and their alignment with the furlongs of the ridge and furrow suggests a Medieval origin, while the name Damestile is recorded in 1613. This would seem to be the site of the former millpool.
3 The above explanation seems the most plausible, and the dam now is as reported then, with no alteration in its state of preservation.

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