Arrow Mill was a working flourmill for over a thousand years and is mentioned in the Domesday Book when it was valued at three shillings and six pence (17½p). The present brick building was built in the early 1800’s and was part of the neighbouring Ragley Estate.
Working mills were found almost every mile on the River Arrow but most have become houses, housing estates or sadly, just simply vanished. From the top of Arrow Mill you can see Oversley Mill upstream and the site of Broom Mill below.
Flour was ground up until the early 1950’s followed by animal feeds using a diesel engine right up until 1962 when the last millers, Adkins & Thomas relinquished their lease and the mill was sold by the estate to developers with the view of turning the building into flats, similar to Lucy’s Mill in Stratford upon Avon.
After a change of plans the doors to the mill reopened in 1966 boasting three restaurants and five bars over two floors. The mill changed hands to Charingtons, Mitchell & Butler and then to Bass when the brewers took them over.
Under Bass’s the mill had a chequered career with successful tenants and not so successful brewery managers that normally followed. In 1983 the Woodhams family took over the lease and in 1986 acquired the freehold returning it to private ownership.
Since then the mill has evolved into what you see today. We have tried very hard over the years to retain the original mill features while constantly improving the facilities.
Central to the Mill is its wheel, which has been completely refurbished. Bearings, shaft and the timber parts have all been renewed or replaced and the wheel sluice renovated.
After many stationary years the wheel is now turning again since dredging the badly silted up mill feed returned a water flow to drive the wheel and provide a fresh water feed to the lake.