Report - - Gidlow Mill / Pagefiled Building of Wigan College of Technology and air raid shelter. Jan 20 | Industrial Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Gidlow Mill / Pagefiled Building of Wigan College of Technology and air raid shelter. Jan 20


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28DL Full Member
This was actually our back up plan , the first place we visited we hadn't figured out a way in so we headed to Wigan to check out this place.
It seems it had been done to death over the years but we had never seen it so went too see if there was anything left too look at.

Visited with OLI

I wont go into loads of history as its well documented already but did find this information about the building being listed.


Heritage Category :Listed
Building Grade :II
List Entry Number:1384455
Date first listed:04-Nov-1996

Formerly known as: Gidlow Mill BRIDGEMAN TERRACE.

Integrated cotton mill, comprising spinning mill with integral boiler and engine house, associated chimney and attached weaving sheds; now part of a college. 1865. By George Woodhouse. For Rylands & Sons; altered and internally remodelled. Main range of red brick in English garden wall bond (3+1) with stridently polychrome bands and ornament in black and yellow brick; roof concealed but consists of multiple ridge structure with Welsh slate covering. Shallow L-plan formed by spinning block on east-west axis with integral boiler house and engine room at west end projecting to the rear, with corner turrets. Italianate style.

EXTERIOR: Three storeys, 1:4:1:4:1:24:1 windows, the single-window portions being projected turrets rising above parapet level (and the first eight windows of the 24-window main range now enclosed by recently-added full-height glazed porch/stair turret); with a chamfered plinth, broad polychrome bands linking the heads of the windows on all floors, further enriched with black crosses at first-floor level and geometric patterns to the upper stages of the turrets. The ground and first floors have large segmental-headed windows, the second floor has pairs of round-headed windows, and all have polychrome heads; and the turrets have prominent cornices (some openings altered). Tower to rear.

INTERIOR: fire-proof construction based on brick jack arches, supported on cast-iron columns. Detached chimney at west end, of brown brick with polychrome dressings and stone cornices, three unequal stages, with square base, octagonal second stage and wide cylindrical shaft (reduced): rectangular panels to the base with raised geometric patterns, round-headed blind windows and sunk panels to the second stage, moulded cornices to both, and shaft with one moulded band, 16 steel belts and moulded cornice. Weaving sheds attached to rear, in two portions. The inner, rectangular in plan and the outer trapeziform and larger (30 bays): brick partition and side walls with stone copings, saw-tooth "north-light" roofs, the outer angled, both glazed but the inner roofed with corrugated asbestos sheet and the outer with Welsh slates. Substantial mill reservoir; stone-lined and enclosed by stone boundary wall to north-west corner of site.

HISTORY: designed for throstle spinning, with throstles at ground floor and preparation rooms above. Gidlow Works was for some time the centre of Rylands and Sons extensive textile business. It is one of a number of similar mill designs produced by Woodhouse, but the only one built in Britain. The use of polychromatic brickwork for mill construction at this time was unusual. Forms a very striking feature on an elevated site immediately north of Mesnes Park.​


Nothing of great note happened during the visit, we did come across some lads throwing rocks at stuff but i guess there isn't much else to do on a Sunday morning in Wigan.
We spent a good few hours wandering round the building which is really trashed but did have loads of great features. we then wandered around looking for the shelter which was a great explore. i was surprised by the size of the place and how many entrances had been back filled.

At the end of the shelter we found a tunnel that someone has been digging out, when we were in the cellar of the mill we found a brick arch way with a wooden door that had been back filled with red brick rubble. (forgot too take a pic) I'm thinking maybe this was an entrance too the shelter direct from the mill? if the mystery tunneller ever finishes it would be interesting to see if that door is where it leads.

Here's a few pics from the visit
















The Dig.










loved the holes in the wall in this room, looked to me like a constellation of stars.

A good mooch really, worth the drive. :thumb

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