Bob's Mellor Mill Diary
Bob (Robert Humphrey-Taylor) is leading the excavations at Mellor Mill.
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Just a quick note to keep you updated on progress.
I have managed to get enough steel staircase and handrail fittings (second hand) to make up into the access down from the wheel bearing platform into the bottom of the pit. The parts are currently being cleaned of rust/debris and painted with black hammerite paint. Once cleaned and painted I will get the parts down to the pit ready for on-site assembly. I am quite sure that there will need to be some re-modeling as a straight set of stairs wouldn't work. The cost will be well within our £1000 budget.
The first volunteers weekend at the Wellington Wheel Pit will be 3/4 September. I know this clashes with the Moor End to Marple Bridge exhibition but I would expect people to be sensible and take time out to tour that as well. I am concerned that the timescale for this phase of the Mellor Mill project is quite short and we need to move on with it. I propose 9am to 4pm on the Saturday and the Sunday.
I am meeting Brian Pendlebury from the Youth Offenders Scheme on Thursday at 10am and I hope that will give me another workforce to tackle the spoil heap in September.
All the volunteers I have spoken to have been told that they will need to complete a Manual Handling Course (2 hrs at most) to comply with our insurers. This will be run on both the Saturday morning and the Sunday morning from 10am - 12pm
I would like all volunteers to be sent an email of the HSE pdf file on Manual Handling and a request that they read it before coming to the dig. A prior understanding will cut down the time spent instructing. I will keep a register of attendees and issue individual MAT certificates as requested by our insurers. I am attaching the HSE pdf so that it can be sent out as we get volunteers.
We seem to be doing quite well with volunteers and I think we will be able to move the project on to a point where the public can view the pit and understand its story.
During the sorting of the spoil I have had all complete bricks set to one side. My hope is that we will gather sufficient to use for some/all pathways. It would seem an appropriate use of sixteenth century handmade bricks. What do you think? [I agree, but I think they were 18th century! John]
Things are progressing OK. We have started some lime mortar pointing to the headrace. Dave Myers should be arriving next week to remove trees which are dangerous/obscure the view. The timescale is optimistic with not as many volunteers as hoped. However, there is an article in this week's free paper and in the Stockport Express appealing for volunteers and it has already produced one new volunteer who will come this Sunday. I have had an offer (via a mutual friend) from a keen local amateur photographer to produce the photo archive - I will speak with him tonight and let you know the outcome. John has also received an offer from a local retired architect who is willing to volunteer.