Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 146,991 pages of information and 232,842 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Victoria Mill

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The Victoria Mills in Varley Street, Miles Platting, Manchester, were constructed in 1867 and 1873 for William Holland, by the Architect George Woodhouse of Bolton. The earlier Georgian Mills had long since outlived their usefulness, and were soon outgrown in the face of increased production, and Holland decided to vacate his former Adelphi Mill in Salford after severe flooding.

He chose to move to Miles Platting, which was beginning to be developed by other mill-owners at that time, and planned his huge mill to be built in two stages, six storeys high, and of two identical buildings joined by a common engine house. The dominant feature was to be the chimney. In those days steeplejacks were paid according to the number of bricks they used, and as a result they ingeniously contrived to cap chimneys with as much masonry as it could stand. This chimney was no exception - it is tall octagonal and graceful, its slender shaft falling into a large drum with arcading.

The mill still worked until 1960, and thereafter remained in a sadly derelict condition for many years. More recently it has undergone a renaissance as new apartments and offices for the NHS.

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