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Thread: The Bridge Mill - Eastern Scotland - 2012

  1. #1
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    Default The Bridge Mill - Eastern Scotland - 2012


    Another previous explore, this time from a monsterous mill on the east coast. Originally founded by W. Haig as a brewery in 1810 in an area famed for its brewing excellence the mill was converted for the production of paper and other related materials in 1873.





    By 1896 the site had expanded, with new structures along the south and west elevation to the main street showing a similarity to the footprint of the earlier brewery buildings. The expansion continued, modestly but steadily, with the addition of new buildings through the early twentieth century. By the late twentieth century the northern part of the mill had been altered considerably with the erection of a new boiler house in 1949, a calender house in 1952 and the effluent treatment plant in 1991–1992. Generally though the site retained a dense mix of mid to late nineteenth century brick built buildings and early nineteenth century masonry elements with twentieth century insertions and additions.







    Power for the mill was originally provided exclusively by steam engines, but from the 1880′s steam power was increasingly used to drive electric generators. Although electric power eventually prevailed, steam was still required for the process, notably for heating and drying. The great quantities of ash produced from the coal-fired boilers, along with other bulky waste products, were tipped into the estuary to create land for expansion of the site. There were two steam turbines at the mill, a Metropolitan-Vickers 3.5 MW turbine installed in 1929 and taken out of use in the 1950s and a British Thomson-Houston 5 MW turbine, dating from about 1950 and decommissioned in 1982, after which electricity was taken from the National Grid.



    By the 21st century the mill was producing an average of 35,000 tonnes of paper per year on four machines and the company in charge, who specialised in the manufacture of security papers for financial and official documents, were marketed worldwide with over 30% of their production sold outwith the UK. The mill employed a staff of 260 and was turning over an annual £35 million. Economic recession however was to hit the company hard.





    The mill had been the subject of a Scottish management buy-out in 2002, after 20 years in US ownership, transforming it from a volume to specialist manufacturer in a deal estimated to have been worth around £13m. In December 2007 the company’s auditors had warned that a land sale, which had been seen as critical for several years, would have to be completed before the following June, when £2.1m of debts fell due.



    But hopes of a sale of part of the company's 40-acre site were undermined by the real estate slump at a time when renewing debt finance became difficult. Following significant losses in previous years, there had been an improvement in trading over 2007. Despite this, a number of external factors acted against the company including significant increases in energy and raw material costs and a general decline in the availability of credit. In 2006 the mill ended up back in private hands, subsequently drying up any remaining public funding.





    On Thursday afternoon, July 24th 2008 the administrators were brought in and production formally ceased. All 260 employees were called into the staff canteen where it was announced that the mill was no longer in operation and by 5pm, 180 of them would be out of a job.

    Hoocha

  2. Thanks given by: chapmand, flyboys90, jfrsteve, lost, night crawler, Pincheck, Ramsgatonian, shot_in_the_dark, Silent Hill
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  4. #2
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    Impressive place, looks lik eit is slowly rotting away.
    May the shadow of Murphy never darken your door."
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    Forgotten Fairmile
    Spuds Rural Explorations
    The Church explorer

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    nice shots, thanks for sharing
    Those who destroy what's been left behind, are those ignorant enough to believe that history only belongs in museums and books.

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    Great report & photos.

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    Cheers guys. Was a pretty exciting slpore playing cat and mouse with secca. Yeh the place is getting renovated for multiple uses just now. They're re opening a brewery there in fact. First time in over 120 years!
    Hoocha

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    That last pic is very impressive!

  9. Thanks given by: Scattergun
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrDan View Post
    That last pic is very impressive!
    Thank you Mr Dan. So was the height from the top! Gotta love panos.
    Hoocha

  11. #8
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    Excellent report, industrial sites are my favourite explores...
    "The last Beemer out of Saigon. I'm at the mercy of the Vietnamese peasants. Please don't put me in a bamboo cage."

    ramsgatonian@hotmail.com

  12. Thanks given by: Scattergun
  13. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramsgatonian View Post
    Excellent report, industrial sites are my favourite explores...
    Cheers mate, you've got some pretty cool places up here yourself. Really liked the Firth-Vickers site :)
    Hoocha

  14. Thanks given by: Ramsgatonian
  15. #10
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    Very nice, love your composition :)

    ~RR
    'No architecture can be truly noble which is not imperfect' - John Ruskin

    http://www.facebook.com/RectoryRatUrbex

    urban-photography@hotmail.co.uk

    :)

  16. Thanks given by: Scattergun
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