Armley Mills - Leeds, South Yorkshire
The Satanic Mills in Armley is a haven for haunted activity

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The ghosts of the Satanic Mills in Armley, a haven for haunted activity. Are you brave enough to join Haunted Happenings at these ghostly old mills?

Ghost Hunts at Armley Mills will allow you to take a peek into the harsh living conditions of those who worked here. Some of these workers still exist in spirit and don't mind letting you know that they are there. These Satanic Mills have given us some terrifying activity on our previous overnight ghost hunts here. The area where one of the worker's committed suicide is very active as is the cinema area where seats have been pushed down by invisible hands.

Haunted Happenings ran an overnight ghost hunt at Armley Mills with the cast of Emmerdale and they still talk about the ghostly experiences they had during their event. Join us on an overnight ghost hunt at these terrifying mills and you will soon see why it rates so highly on the list for ghost hunts.


Armley Mills

Ghosts of Armley Mills

Armley Mills in Leeds has a haunting reputation dating back many years on previous overnight ghost hunts here we have witnessed the slamming of doors, heavy footsteps are heard to approach but no one ever appears. Down in the oldest part of the mill an imposing figure of what can be described as a Victorian Gentleman has been seen accompanied by the strong smell of burning, maybe an echo from the past as this part of the Mill saw many deaths caused by a fire in the old corn mill. Once the largest woollen mill in the world, these vast mills at Armley once employed children as young as six in cruel harsh conditions at the height of the cotton boom, these young children are thought to tug on clothing and throw items in an attempt to gain attention.

History of Armley Mills

The earliest record of Armley Mills dates from the sixteenth century when local clothier Richard Booth leased 'Armley Mills' from Henry Saville. A document written in the early 1700's gives the first description of the mills. 'That Fulling Mill in Armley... containing two wheels and four stocks... also the water corn mill and all the fulling mills... containing one wheel and two stocks'. In the late 1700's Armley Mills was equipped with five waterwheels powering eighteen fulling stocks.

Fulling is one of the final processes in cloth production. It involves pounding the cloth with large hammers in pits filled with a mixture of water, urine and 'fullers earth', causing the fibres to mat together or 'felt'. The original fulling hammers are still in place in the Mill today. In the late 1700's Armley Mills was bought by Colonel Thomas Lloyd, a Leeds cloth merchant, who turned Armley into the world's largest woollen mill. 

The earliest record of Armley Mills dates from the middle of the sixteenth century when local clothier Richard Booth leased 'Armley Millnes' from Henry Saville. A document of 1707 describes them as fulling mills. One contained two wheels and four fulling stocks, while another was used to grind corn mill and two fulling stocks'. The mills expanded and by 1788 were equipped with five waterwheels driving eighteen fulling stocks. Fulling was a necessary but dirty process where woven wool is felted. The bundles of cloth are hit repeatedly by large hammers, the fulling stocks, while soaked in water, urine and a clay known as Fuller's earth. The urine which is a source of ammonia was collected from neighbouring houses, who specially saved it for the purpose.

The mills were sold in 1788, ten years after the new canal opened. It was bought by Colonel Thomas Lloyd, a Leeds cloth merchant who expanded it to be the world's largest woollen mill, he leased the running of the mills to Israel and John Burrows, they built semi-detached houses for themselves on the far bank of the canal.

In 1804 to 1805 the mills were sold to Benjamin Gott but burnt down. The early mills were fire hazards, the fibres in the air igniting and setting fire to the flammable structure. Gott rebuilt the mill using fireproof principles: the mill structure survives and it is this structure that has achieved a grade II listing. Gott was the owner of several woollen mills. He died in 1840 and was succeeded by his sons John Gott and William Gott. They introduced a steam engine to supplement the water wheels in 1850 but it was in the 1860s that the waterwheels were phased out.

By 1907 part of mill had been let out to tenants in a room and power agreement. The woollen clothing manufacturers Bentley and Tempest took over the mill. The mill closed in 1971, a victim to the changing technology, loss of market and the prevailing economic conditions. It was sold to Leeds City Council who re-opened it as a museum of industry in 1982.

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