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© Mr M. I. Joachim

IoE Number: 458194
Photographer: Mr M. I. Joachim
Date Photographed: 01 July 2003
Date listed: 10 September 1987
Date of last amendment: 17 November 1995
Grade II

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SHREWSBURY 653-1/4/753 SPRING GARDENS 09-JUN-03 (West side) STOVE HOUSE AND DYE HOUSE AT FORMER DI THERINGTON FLAX MILL (Formerly listed as: SPRING GARDENS DYE HOUSE AT FORMER DITHERINGTON FLAX MILL) (Formerly listed as: SPRING GARDENS SHROPSHIRE MALTINGS, BARLEY DRYING ROO M AND ATTACHED DRYING STOVES.) GV II* Former Drying Stove House and Dye House of flax mill, subsequently barley drying room, now disused. Early C19 (pre-1804), extended 1811-12, altered and further enlarged 1850, converted to barley drying room 1897-8. Brick with Welsh slate and asbestos roof. Single storey, square in plan. Principal elevation faces east with 12-bay blind arcade with projecting imposts and keystones, each bay having a large window opening with cambered arches and projecting stone sills, timber casement windows with vertical glazing bars. Double roof, hipped to north and south, with continuous ridge roof lights raised above clerestory ventilators. INTERIOR: the valley beam is carried on 5 Doric cast-iron columns. Roof of 12 bays with wrought-iron rod and bar trusses with ornate cast-iron strainers. Mezzanine floor inserted on conversion to maltings 1897-98. HISTORY: The Stove House, subsequently enlarged by the addition of the Dye House in 1850 building was an early and significant component of the Flax Mill site established by Marshall, Benyon and Bage 1796-7, and marked the increasing specialisation of production during the early years of the C19. It is sited close to Main Mill, part of the core complex, and the earliest iron-framed building in the world. Cross Mill, to the south-east is now the eighth oldest iron framed building. The Warehouse is the third oldest iron-framed, fire proof building in the world, and the second oldest component on the site. Purpose-built as a flax mill, Ditherington is also notable as marking a transition to the factory production of flax. After its closure as a flax mill in 1886, the site was acquired by William Jones and converted into a maltings in 1897-98, closing in 1986. Forms a group with the Flax Mill (q.v.) the Apprentice House (q.v.), the Stables (q.v.) and the Smithy (q.v.) The Ditherington Flax Mill complex, of which the Dye House and Stove building was an early and significant component, contains the worlds earliest iron-framed building, an advance in constructional technology which made possible not only the development of multi-storeyed, fireproof industrial buildings, but, more significantly, changed forever the way buildings were designed and constructed. That this advance was expressed first in a textile factory has led to the now iconic status of the building type as the most potent symbol of the Industrial Revolution. The closely related subsequent additions of the Warehouse and the Cross Mill components, sequentially the third and eighth oldest iron-framed buildings endows the Ditherington Flax mill site with a unique architectural and historic significance. Macleod M, Trinder B, Worthington M: Ditherington Flax Mill, Shrewsbury: Ironbridge: 1988-).

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