Welcome to the web site of Mellor Archaeological Trust
Community Dig 2 Taking into account the revolting weather we experienced during the four days leading up to Good Friday it was amazing that we had a good number of primary school children and...
Community Dig We've been working hard, as usual, to progress the site. The Community Dig last week was a really great step forward and we hope that many of those who attended will come back to...
Unveiling the 1805 Painting of Mellor Mill
On Saturday, March 14, an oil painting of Samuel Oldknow’s Mellor Mill, was unveiled, which hangs high above the reception desk. A few years ago, Mark Whittaker, (left) who has done so much for the community by establishing the Marple Website, heard about this picture. Engravings had long been known, indeed one hangs in the library, but this was the original oil painting by the Manchester artist, Joseph Parry. In late 2013, Mark was told that the owner, Sean White, wanted to sell it for £3,500 and would be happy for it to come to Marple. As he wanted to sell quickly, the Mellor Archaeological Trust launched an appeal to raise funds to acquire it for the benefit of the community. The Cooperative Community Fund started the ball rolling by paying half the cost of the painting. The SMBC Area Flexibility Fund provided £500 and as did the Mellor Society. Other support came from four local organisations and from over 20 individual donors. This not only covered the cost of the picture but paid for conservation and insurance.
At the unveiling, Professor John Hearle, Chairman of the Trust, told the story of the acquisition of the painting. This complements the excavation of the remains of the mill, which was burnt out in 1892, as part of the HLF-supported project “Revealing Oldknow’s Legacy: Mellor Mill and the Peak Forest Canal in Marple”, being run jointly with Canal and River Trust. The Mayor of Stockport, Councillor Kevin Hogg, welcomed the display of the picture of the largest cotton mill in Stockport, indeed in the world, when it was built in 1790-92, so that it can be seen by the local community. He then asked Mark Whittaker to pull the cord and open a view of the picture and its accompanying plaque.
Cleaned Parry Picture
About the Trust
The Trust was formed in 2000 following the discovery in 1998 of an Iron Age ditch in the garden of The Old Vicarage next to Mellor Church. Excavations continued to 2009 and have been described as the largest excavation for a generation of a hillfort in North West England "with results as important as those at Beeston Castle". There have been finds from Mesolithic, Neolithic, Bronze Age, Iron Age, Romano-British and Medieval times. In 2007, the Trust extended its activities to cover the whole history of the whole Parish of Mellor. Digs, which are continuing annually, at the Bronze Age burial site of Shaw Cairn on Mellor Moor included finding of nearly 100 beads of an amber necklace in 2008/9. Current work is focused on Mellor Mill, the largest and most impressive cotton mill in the world when it was built in 1790-92. It was burnt out in 1892. The area became woodland, which is now being converted into a small country park showing the remains of the mill and other buildings.
Enjoy reading about the archaeology, history and buildings of Mellor and find out about volunteering, events, publications and other activities.
Mellor Mill painting by Joseph Parry now displayed in Marple Library
THE PAINTING HAS BEEN HUNG IN MARPLE LIBRARY FOR THE COMMUNITY TO SHARE
Where is Mellor?
Now on the edge of Stockport in Greater Manchester, Mellor's location is historically important.
On the south-west and north-west, it is bordered by the two great rivers, Goyt and Etherow, which drain the SW Peak District and join to form the Mersey at the lowest point of Mellor.
On the east, a high ridge overlooks a valley, behind which is Kinder Scout. Three spurs, separated by brooks, project west from the ridge.