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Aberfeldy Water Mill

Aberfeldy Water Mill
©2019 Gazetteer for Scotland

Aberfeldy Water Mill

Located on Mill Street in Aberfeldy, Perth and Kinross, Aberfeldy Water Mill represents a unique art gallery and bookshop. Located in a Grade A-listed former meal mill, amongst much of the original equipment, the venture was opened by author and traveller Michael Palin in 2005. The bookshop occupies the main floor of the building, with a coffee shop below and, on the top floor, the Watermill Gallery, which features abstract modern and contemporary paintings. Originally built in 1825, it first opened to the public as a working oats mill and tourist attraction following an award-winning restoration in 1987 by Tom Rodger, an eighth-generation miller who ran a modern milling plant in Cupar (Fife). This restoration project received a Civic Trust Commendation (1988) and a Conservation Award from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and The Times newspaper (1989). On Rodger's death in 2002 the mill closed and was bought by in 2004 Kevin and Jayne Ramage, who ran a bookshop in London. A major conversion followed which opened the building up to create a light and airy space, while retaining as much of the original equipment as possible, either as decorative features or, in the case of the 4.6m (15 feet) over-shot mill wheel, to generate electricity. The wheel takes water from the Moness Burn in the Birks of Aberfeldy through a 460m (500 yard) lade which runs under the town. The original 1.3m (57 inch) French Burr mill stones, each weighing 1.5 tonnes, remain in situ under the same wooden covers used when milling. A 5-m (16-foot) high atrium, occupying a space once used as a grain hopper, serves as a feature within the building.

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