OSWESTRY BORDERLAND HERITAGE
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Morda (3)


There was a concentration of textile manufacturing on the river at Morda by a man called Charles Hulbert, a Mancunian, who began weaving yarn spun at Turners mill at Llangollen, producing calico for printing. Henry Warren of Bury in Lancashire and John Roberts of Oswestry leased two of the mill sites at Morda, Morda Lower Mill and Upper Weston Mill. The print works was operating in 1804, when it was valued at over 24,000. The partnership was dissolved in 1806 but production continued under Henry Warrens direction until 1818. Upper Weston Mill was later a corn mill but has now been demolished.. Morda lower mill after being used for paper making in the mid 19th century, reverted to textile use as Roger's woollen factory from 1860's to 1930's. The site remains in industrial use but the only old buildings are some low stone structures which may have been drying sheds for the paper mill.

Part of the 1839 Field Map of Weston Cotton showing the mills down the Morda Valley. Note the bleaching ground to the west of the main Oswestry road and on the other side the Paper Mill.

1875 map showing the mills along the river at Morda.

Morda Mill which has now been converted to offices and apartments.
Source Ken Owen.

Area to the south side of the mill, now used as a car park. Note the gate in the centre of the photo leads to an overgrown grass area which was the former Mill Pond. Beyond that is the remains of the Mill race.

Photo of the start of the Mill race leading to Morda Mill. The sluice gate mechanism has been removed and the weir has been dismantled, (Date unknown) hence the water from the river now does not reach the level of the mill race.

Source Ken Owen

Upper Weston Mill At one time being a Corn Mill in the possession of Benjamin Roberts (Miller and J.P) living at Belle Vue, Morda Road, Oswestry.

Source Ken Owen

Receipt from Morda Mills in the possession of Benjamin Roberts dated December 26th 1877. addressed to a Mr Henry Pugh of Llandisilio. for goods amounting to 5.4s, a fair amount in those days. It would appear that the Mills were open on Boxing Day for traders to pick up their goods. The receipt is signed by a Mr E Hudson on behalf of Benjamin Roberts.

Source David Benson.

Another receipt to Henry Pugh dated August 15th 1878 for 4.16s.

Source David Benson

1875 map showing Benjamin Roberts house Belle Vue with the paper mill at the lower end of the page. Belle Vue changed hands and became Glentworth. Note the large elongated Teardrop shaped ornamental lake to the west of Belle Vue. This site still exists although there is no water in the lake. If you walk around the edge of the lake bed you can still see the blue brick edging stones which will have been made at the Sweeney Brick works in Morda. It is believed that this lake was made as a feeder for the two mills below Morda and the sluice gates are still there in the undergrowth.

Source Ken Owen

Morda lower mill. Note on the above map this mill is shown in 1875 as a paper mill. According to Kelly,s Directory of 1863, Whitridge & Co were paper manufactures at Morda Paper Mill in 1863. No trace of this mill now remains.


Source Ken Owen.

Interesting receipt dated May 22nd 1878 addressed to a Mr H Pugh of Llandisilio from Whitridge & Co, Paper Merchants. This receipt is headed Oswestry and does not indicate that the firm was based in Morda Mill although they used the Mill for producing their products.

Source David Benson.

Advertisment from the Border Counties Advertizer dated 1th December 1889 advising of the death of Benjamin Roberts, aged 72 years.

Source Ken Owen

Advert of the death of Benjamin Roberts taken from the Salopian and Montgomeryshire Post dated 21st December 1889.

Source Ken Owen

1901 map now shows that after the death of Benjamin Roberts in 1889 the house Belle Vue was sold and the name changed to Glentworth. The lake acquired a boat house and a footbridge across the narrow stretch of water leading out of the lake. The map also shows that the Paper Mill had changed to a Woollen Mill and had a Mill Pond to the west of it which would have been fed by the Ornamental lake via the sluice which is still in situ.. Note the Mill Race leading away from the Woollen Mill to rejoin the River Morda to the East.

Source Ken Owen.

Recent photo of weir below the take off for the mill race to lower Weston Mill.


Source Ken Owen May 2014.
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