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Brigton Mill

Grain Mill (18th Century), Spinning Mill (18th Century)

Site Name Brigton Mill

Classification Grain Mill (18th Century), Spinning Mill (18th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Brigton Old Cornmill

Canmore ID 313175

Site Number NO44NW 106

NGR NO 41712 47188

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Digital Images

Administrative Areas

  • Council Angus
  • Parish Kinnettles
  • Former Region Tayside
  • Former District Angus
  • Former County Angus


Reference (28 August 2008 - 15 October 2009)

Historic documents, maps and aerial photos.

Field Visit (26 February 2009 - 4 February 2010)

Walk over with historic maps and aerial photos. Measured survey and photography.

Brigton Mill is situated E of the Kerbet Water, and W of Brigton Farm. The mill is a rectangular building consisting of stone built walls up to about half of the first floor. Much of the building was destroyed by fire in the 1940s, but has been repaired and is now roofed with modern timber supports and corrugated iron sheets. Most of the ground floor stonework is intact and at the rear the lower sections of first floor windows are present. The windows and doors of the original building (except the ground floor door) have been blocked, either by stonework or by wooden shutters. The present concrete floor is higher than the original and thus obscures the level at which the wheelshaft and drive equipment originally were. In this state it has survived to this day as a store or garage.

The lade starts by Brigton house, where about 30 years ago the dam and fish pass on the Kerbet was repaired. The water intake was immediately beside the NE corner of the dam, where there also is a fine stone-built sluice gate. It is now blocked off by a low earth dam. The reason for the excellent quality of the sluice arrangement may be because it was improved when the lade was required for the Douglastown flax spinning mill. Thereafter the water travelled along a deep lade to the old corn mill and into a wheel pit. This seems to have been a breast-shot wheel. The lade is built of dressed stone by the mill and there appears to have been a relief sluice just before the wheel. The wooden shaft of the wheel is still present in a rotted state. The water then fell some 2 metres to a create a small burn, which goes under the Douglastown main street and apparently through the cellars of the Bridge house (the old Bridge Inn) before it re-enters the Kerbet.

Brigton mill served the Brigton estate and the mill was considered to be redundant in 1789, when the owner, William Douglas, offered it to a group of his business partners for a pilot trial of water-powered flax spinning equipment. This trial was successful and a purpose built, water-powered spinning mill was built in Bridgetown (later renamed Douglastown). This new mill was in operation by 1790 and it seems likely that the equipment was stripped from the old cornmill at that time or before. There is no evidence that the mill was ever used for grain milling again and the building may have become some kind of store for the Brigton Home Farm, which is adjacent. The wheel was ‘collected’ by a scrap merchant during World War 2.


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