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Woodhouse Road

Castle Street



Map Ref. SD951245


Millsteads Mill on the right


Known occupiers


INGHAM Richard & Sons










BANCROFT James & Co.


Cotton mill on 25” OS map


WHIPP Bros. & TODD Ltd


damaged by fire and partially demolished


Demolished for housing


Additional information

researched, recorded and referenced by Mrs Sheila Wade

Hebden Bridge WEA Local History Group


History of the Cockcroft Family

Between the back of Lower Castle Street and the river, there was, down to 1857, an old mill; one of the originals built in the form of 3 or 4 cottages with small mullioned windows, where cotton was carded and spun into weft for hand weavers 70 years ago and delivered to weavers by William Smith. It was called Millsteads Mill. In 1857 it had a boiler and engine.

(William Smith was a bookkeeper for Richard Ingham & Sons. He died unmarried at Castle Naze)


Notes from John Travis, local 19th century historian

About 1860, great alterations made to Millsteads Mill by the Ingham family who were the owners. A shed for 500 looms was built with boiler and engine houses, chimney, warehouse and size houses, together with many other improvements. John Gaukroger, formerly of Higher Lumb Mill in Hebden Bridge, was the first occupying tenant. He was in partnership with John Barker and William Shackleton at PUDSEY MILL. After a few years they separated and John Gaukroger took Millsteads New Shed, Castle Street.


Stansfield Township valuation 1805

No number on plan. Millsteads is a house with a large workshop, owned by Richard Ingham, occupied by John Firth, annual value £10. Part not yet occupied, owned by Richard Ingham, annual value £4.


Pigot & Deane 1824/25

Richard Ingham & Sons, cotton spinners & manufacturers, Millsteads and Cinderhill.


Pigot & Deane 1828/29

Richard Ingham & Sons, cotton spinners & manufacturers, Millsteads and Cinderhill


Factory Enquiry Commission 1833

Millsteads: Cotton spinning; 28 hands; weft and twist; mill built 1811; steam engine 10hp; Mill works a 12 hour day, 9 hours on Saturday.


Pigot & Deane 1834

Richard Ingham & Sons, cotton spinners & manufacturers, Millsteads and Cinderhill


Halifax Guardian 29th January 1853

Workmen employed at Millsteads erecting a new steam engine of 50hp belonging to Messrs Ingham of Castle Lodge.


Stansfield Rates Book 1854-1860

Owned and occupied by Ingham Bros; Millstead Castle Street; mill etc; rateable value £77.12s.0d; new engine house £5.11s.0d; new power loom shed and additions £76.6s.6d.


Halifax Guardian 6th March 1864

To let – Millsteads Mill and weaving shed. 50hp condensing steam engine and boilers, warehouses, machine shop, joiners shop, smithy, size house, gas works and out buildings. Also machinery in mill; 3,924 mule spindles and preparation; sizing machines; gas apparatus etc. In the occupation of Richard Ingham & Sons. Shed will contain about 500 power looms. Present occupier willing to dispose of a portion of the looms to a new tenant. Possession 1st April next.


Stansfield Rates Book 1867-1876

Occupied by John Gaukroger & Co; owned by Mrs. R. Ingham; cotton mill; Castle Street; rateable value £146.6s.0d; empty.


Kelly 1871

John Gaukroger & Bros. cotton manufacturers, Millsteads Mill


Census 1871

John Gaukroger, Castle Lodge, aged 46, cotton manufacturer. (Wife Susannah aged 47)


Slater 1875

John Gaukroger, cotton spinner and manufacturer, Millsteads Mill


Factory Act prosecutions 2nd August 1877

Mrs. S. Gaukroger, cotton manufacturer – Millstead Mill, Todmorden

Case heard before A Ormerod, G. Hinchcliffe and T. Riley Esqrs. at Todmorden Town Hall.

Neglecting to fence a certain hoist, near to which children are employed, and women, young persons, and children pass.

Penalty of £5 and costs of 8s.


Stansfield Rates Book 1877-1878

Occupied by Susan Gaukroger; owned by Mrs. R. Ingham; mill and power; Castle Street; rateable value £255.7s.2d.


Halifax Guardian 27th July 1878

Mill of Mrs. Gaukroger, Millsteads Mill, was opened for hands to resume work to finish what was in hand. A few weeks ago a reduction to wages was made of 5% and notice of a further reduction of a ½d a cut given to make wages uniform with Hebden Bridge. Weavers remain on strike – about 200 hands.


Halifax Guardian 3rd August 1878

Receiver in the estate of Mrs. Gaukroger, Millsteads Mill, having withdrawn notice of further reduction of ½d a cut, the strike is now over.


Halifax Guardian 10th August 1878

First meeting of creditors of Susannah Gaukroger of Castle Lodge and Millsteads Mill near Todmorden, and Hangingroyd Shed at Hebden Bridge, and Norfolk Street Manchester, cotton manufacturer. Liabilities £7,737.3s.5d. Assets £3,760.9s.9d. Liquidation by arrangement resolved.


Leeds Mercury 1st November 1878

Todmorden trade depressed. Mrs. Gaukroger's weaving shed closed through failure.


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 1st August 1879

Cotton trade depressed. Millsteads Mill, 476 looms, closed.


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 2nd January 1880

Millsteads Mill to let, now in the occupation of Mrs. S. Gaukroger. Weaving shed to hold about 500 looms. Power includes horizontal condensing steam engine of 50hp.


Todmorden Advertiser 13th January 1882

Notice of sale of Millsteads Shed and Size House. 500 looms.


Stansfield Rates Book 1882

Occupied by Firth & Clark; owned by Mrs. R. Ingham; mill; Millsteads; rateable value £264.15s.0d.


Stansfield rates Book 1883-1886

Occupied by Firth & Clark; owned by Mrs. R. Ingham; mill, power, 50hp; rateable value £241.10s.0d; size house etc; £18.


30th December 1885

Great fire at Millsteads Mill, Castle Street, in the occupation of Messrs Firth & Clark; estimated damage over £3,000. The new steam fire engine was employed for the first time. At first, there were doubts whether they were justified before it had been formally accepted and a trial made. The Surveyor, Clerk and one or two other members were appealed to, and ultimately Mr. John Dugdale, Chairman of the Fire Engine Committee, ordered it out.


the brand new fire engine, horse drawn, used at the above fire


Halifax Courier 2nd January 1886

Fire at Millsteads Mill, premises of Firth & Clark, cotton manufacturers, Castle Street, Todmorden. Damage £3,000, insured. Building of 4 storeys destroyed. About 20 looms in the weaving shed (an adjoining building) destroyed. The steam fire engine was used for the first time at this fire.


Slater 1887

Firth & Clarke, manufacturers of cotton goods, Millsteads


Halifax Courier 30th April 1887

Firth & Clarke, Castle Street, closed 2 weeks – weavers just received £6 from the Todmorden Weavers Association.


Manchester Examiner 22nd July 1887

Millsteads Mill, 460 looms, running full time


Stansfield Rates Book 1890-1899

Occupied by James Bancroft & Co. Ltd; owned by Mrs. R. Ingham; mill and power: Millsteads; rateable value £208.


Todmorden Advertiser 2nd January 1891

Millsteads Mill, weavers strike at Castle Street. Distribution of strike pay costing the local society £20 to £30 weekly. The weekly income of the local union is £14.


Todmorden Advertiser 9th January 1891

Members of the union received, according to the amount of their previous weekly contributions, either 3 shillings, 6 shillings or 9 shillings, with 2 shillings per loom extra, less 2d per loom deducted to form a special relief fund.


Halifax Courier 17th January 1891

Millsteads weavers – full meeting of weavers lately in the employ of J. Bancroft & Co.


Factory Act prosecutions 5th February 1891

James Bancroft and Co. manufacturers, Millsteads, Todmorden.

Case heard before J.A. Ingham and D.J. Crossley, Todmorden Police Court

Employing two young persons during a mealtime.

Penalty 5s and 15s.6d costs – I also agreed to take one penalty in this case.


Todmorden Advertiser 13th February 1891

Millsteads Mill – strike continues for higher wages


Todmorden Advertiser 20th February 1891

Millsteads Mill – Wholesale issue of summons against strikers


Todmorden Advertiser 27th February 1891

Millsteads Mill – Adjourned charges of intimidation against strikers


Todmorden Advertiser 6th March 1891

Millsteads Mill – Charges of assault against weavers in the strike


Todmorden Advertiser 26th March 1891

Millsteads Mill – Strike continuing – alleged intimidation of non-union weavers


Todmorden Advertiser 10th April 1891

Millsteads Mill – Strike now in 22nd week


Worrall 1891

James Bancroft & Co. Ltd. Millsteads and Cinderhill Mills; 1,000 looms; grandrills, lusters, oxfords, zephyrs, drills, twills etc. and at Fullodge Mill Burnley, Manchester Office Carr Street Blackfriars.


15th June 1893

Death of Mr. Joseph Firth of Garden Street, Todmorden, aged 65 years, formerly of the firm Messrs Firth & Clark, Millsteads Mill.


18th April 1894

Destructive fire at the works of Messrs Bancroft & Co. Millsteads Mill, Castle Street, in a portion of the mill known as “Old Building”, doing damage to the goods and machinery estimated at about £1,000


Kelly 1897

James Bancroft & Co. cotton manufacturers, Millsteads Mill


Kelly 1908

Whipp Brothers & Todd Ltd. cotton manufacturers, Millsteads Mill