Traditional Welsh mills are a symbol of what was once the country’s most important industry. Due to their quality, Welsh woollen products have always had significant demand throughout the centuries. Keep reading for the top 7 Welsh mills currently in operation.
Location: Pembrokeshire, Wales, UK
Melin Tregwynt is a remote mill located in Pembrokeshire. It’s been in operation since the 17th century and has stood the test of time through wars and recessions. The top items it makes are blankets, cushions, throws, clothing, bags, and other accessories. It also stocks shops such as Selfridges and Bon Marche. You can visit their online website by clicking the link above.
To watch a short video about Melin Tregwynt Mill and all the inner workings of the mill, click below.
Location: Trefiw, Wales, UK
Trefriw Woollen Mills is first and foremost a family business and has been since 1859. The mill’s machinery is powered by hydroelectric turbines, or water that flows down a steel pipe. Admission is free and the mill opens their main mill machinery rooms to the public. Hand spinning and hand weaving exhibitions are also available. If you’d like to watch a textile craft demonstration, visit during a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday from June to September. Unfortunately, the mill does not permit school parties.
To see some of the beautiful Welsh tapestries, rugs, garments, and other accessories that Trefriw Woollen Mills creates, click here to watch a video.
Location: Solva, Wales, UK
Solva Woollen Mill is a family-owned and operated mill by Tom and Anna Grime. Together, the two partner to run the mill and produce high-quality products. They use 100 percent British Wool to produce primarily carpets and floor rugs. They’re open for visitors year-round on Mondays through Fridays. In the summertime, they also extend their visiting hours to the weekend. They have a tearoom that’s open until 4:45 p.m. with a selection of drinks and homemade cakes. Solva Woollen Mill also has a shop where you can browse for high-quality items and perhaps take home a great Welsh souvenir.
For a complete walk through of Solva Woollen Mill and sneak peek of the craftsmanship, check out the video.
Location: Carmarthen, Wales, UK
Do you like international fashion? Elvet Woollen Mill should be on the top of your list of Welsh mills to visit. The Elvet Woollen Mill is privately owned by Michael Tolputt. It has a long history of over 130 years, but today it produces exclusive garments and accessories for international fashion designers. These designers commission work directly from the mill, which demonstrates just how valuable Welsh heritage and tradition continues to be. However, Elvet Woollen Mill accepts visitors only be appointment, so be sure to visit their website by using the link above and arrange an appointment utilizing their contact form.
Location: Ceredigion, Mid Wales, UK
Rock Mill’s claim to fame is that they are currently the only waterwheel powered commercial woollen mill currently in operation in Wales. The mill was first built in the 1890s by a family member of the current owner and has stayed within the family ever since. Today, it produces tapestry bedspreads, throws, travel rugs, scarves, ties, shawls, and blankets. The mill is open to visitors from Easter time until October. If you go to Rock Mill during the particularly warm weather, you’ll not only be captivated by the mill and history of the establishment, but by the beautiful valley that it’s been built in. There is a bridge and a stream that complement the old stone building that contains the mill itself.
6. Brynkir Woollen Mill
Location: Golan, Wales, UK
In a prior life, Brynkir Woollen Mill was actually a corn mill. In 1850, it was converted to manufactured wool and continually modified until it appears as it does today. It has been in continuous production since 1950 and utilizes hydroelectric power for production. The mill consists of two stories. On the first story (the basement), you’ll find the engines and the machines to make the wool itself. On the second story, the mill has a shop where you can see the tapestry blankets, placemats, neckties, and scarves that the mill produces. Feel free to shop around while you’re there and see the unique goods that the mill has crafted.
Location: Felindre, Wales, UK
Also called the Cambrian Mill, Melin Teifi has been a significant centre of the Welsh woollen industry since the nineteenth century. The current owners of the mill are Raymond and Diane Jones. They first established the mill and employed just three people. The mill has now grown, and they focus on producing flannel, tweed, blankets, quilts, and shawls. If you’re in need of commissioned pieces, Melin Teifi also specializes in Welsh costumes, flannel shirts, smocks, and more. Samples and prices are available upon request.
Additionally, as well as producing fine Welsh wool, it also houses the Museum of the Welsh Woollen Industry. Not only will you be able to visit a real mill, but you can get a history lesson (with free entry!) about the Welsh wool industry and how it has helped support the country.
If you’re considering visiting a Welsh mill, there’s a variety of mills in Wales that are still in operation. You can choose one with spectacular scenery, one that commissions customers, one that’s family-owned and operated, or one that offers refreshments. Whatever you’re looking for, there’s a mill that has it. Mills symbolize some of the most important elements of Welsh culture. If you live in Wales and want to get to know your history better or if you’re just visiting for a little while, this isn’t something you want to miss!