9 thoughts on “Leven Bridge Mill

  1. Very interesting. And as a child staying in my Grandparents Gypsy style Caravan, with Black Lead Stove for Cooking and Heating, wet Battery run Radio and Outside Toilet and Water carried from the Fox Inn’s Rear Court Yard. There was a Single Decker Derelict Bus on the banks of the river that the children played in and yes we used to walk across the weer and swim in the river just below the fall. Have just visited this location from our home in Surrey. Visiting area for Family Tree information.


    • I am researching my family, too. Guy Robinson was manager there
      1892/1942. His wife was Charity Elizabeth DREW and he died, lost at sea.


  2. I’m trying to work out where the camp was. If you stand on Leven Bridge today, which direction do you have to face to be looking towards it?


    • If you stand on the bridge with the new development on your left, and walk to the corner, there’s a private road down to the left hand side. The camp was diagonally off that road where the new holiday homes are. Up until 2 years ago there was still evidence of the old chalets, although long since vandalised almost beyond recognition.


  3. I remember walking across from Acklam Road with my Mum and my sister through the Fox Covert as my Mum called it long before the pub of that name. It seemed like miles as I was around 5 years old at the time in the mid 1940’s. Later as a teenager whizzing down Leven bank with my friends on our bikes. The way down to the river by then was private property.


  4. During the late forties and early fifties the ditch, about 10ft across and 8ft deep, which carried water from above the weir to the mill was getting more and more overgrown, but I understand that the mill did run occasionally.

    Just beyond the mill the ground rose very steeply and there was a narrow foot path up to the top. Every so often a chalet, clap board built bungalow was built off the footpath. My Aunt Mary Anne, really my great aunt owned one about three quarters of the way up. The chalet was lit with oil lamps and there was no running water, and a cess pit-type lavatory.


  5. This photograph is probably a 1930s, or earlier photo. I used to go with my sisters to Leven Bridge, having walked there from Thornaby. At that time 1944/52, the ground shown had been filled in levelled and extended to join up with the field which contained the wood chalets which were all derelict by then. The mill waterway exit shown had been bricked in, and the building shown on the right of the Mill had become a pub called ‘The Cross Keys’.
    To the right of the Cross Keys pub (out of sight) was its car park and site entrance with a single storey grocers and sweet shop adjoining it, directly behind this shop was the ‘River Leven Weir’ (a concrete waterway culvert with an estimated 30’ foot slope stood some 10 foot high which we called the waterfall) and in front of the weir was a large pool known as “Sandy Bottoms”, which was often used at weekends by Thornaby youngsters for swimming and paddling in.


    • I live in the old water mill and have done so for the past 30 years. During the 2nd world war it was made into a dance hall and later converted into 4 flats. The mill race used to flow from the wear at the side of the Cross Keys, this has now all been filled in since the new development at the rear of the Cross Keys there are still cogs attached to the house where the wheel used to sit, I have been trying to find out when the mill was first built but up to now have had no luck…


      • My family the Grahams owned the cafe which was the cottage on the weir so I’m lead to believe up to about the early 60s been trying to find more information about that.


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