Cheddleton Station

This is Cheddleton Station, still in operation, in fact I think we missed out on a trip. We should have taken the opportunity, mind you because of the 2 hour round trip, we may have missed out on the flint mill which was really interesting and worth a trip if you’re about Leek.

Opened in 1849 the station looks like it hasn’t be touched ever since. You can have a quick look around the ticket office, and the station master showed us behind the counter and it all looks like it might have done years ago, but I suppose it’s not a huge surprise in that it served a small village and probably never saw a huge amount of traffic because od the lack of locals, so there was never a need to change anything as it all still worked as intended.

Naturally it closed in 1965, probably because of the Beeching Report as is the way with a lot of the closures in the 60s.

If you head down the canal from the station for about a mile or so, there’s a Cheddleton Mill that was used to pound flint into powder for the nearby pottery industry. Because of the attraction of bone china and the currently clay being unable to be made into bone china, they found that adding flint into the mix would make the pottery stronger so it could be thinner as well as being whiter, just like bone china, and this is where the flint was milled to make that happen.

It’s a really great place and very interesting, as well as being the only place in Europe with 2 working water wheels (I hope I’m correct in that from what was said when we were there). I think we went down on a good day as it was full of volunteers tidying the place up and getting the place ship shape. The were making repairs to one of the wheels and I was asked if I wanted to start the wheel, so lucky me got to turn the crank and get the wheel rolling again. During all of this the chap who was showing me what to do was explaining everything about the place, which was fantastic, a personalized tour. As we were leaving he was giving the next visitors the personal treatment.

If you do go, put a few quid in the donations box. I think the need all the help can get, especially since that their only funding source from what understand.

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