Cumbria’s only fully functioning watermill is run by Ana and Nick Jones their small team of people at Little Salkeld in the north of the county. They have been there since 1975, milling organic and biodynamic specialist flours from 2 UK farmers.
Nick chairs the Traditional Cornmillers Guild which commissioned filmmakers Taskscape Associates and the University of Cumbria to produce a film about the Watermill and 9 other cornmillers, along with a documentary which tells the stories about the people who work so hard to keep mill wheels turning. Both were premiered last night to a packed audience in the huge-screen cinema at the Rheged Discovery Centre near Penrith.
The audience was as diverse as you’d expect in a county where food is grown, made and consumed with such passion. Ana and Nick took centre stage at the end of the evening to answer a big question about The Watermill in years to come. They are hoping that a community group will continue the tradition of producing stoneground flours using horizontal millstones powered by water. The mill was the hub of the community at one time, and is now an essential link between farmer and baker in that necessary part of our culture where wholesome nutritious flours are made by hand into beautiful loaves of bread.