The Curious Role Of Clogs in The Cotton Mill


Here at Arrow Mill we receive a lot of visitors and it is not unusual for someone to occasionally turn up on business stating that either they used to work here when it was a former cotton mill, or one of their family members did.

Courtaulds Limited were a huge employer for the local area once upon a time and it is no surprise that we cross paths with their former staff. The conversations can turn anecdotal and also enhance the historical background of the building.

One gentlemen that came in today stated that he used to come across to Arrow Mill circa forty years ago for maintenance reasons (maintenance still is and always has been Arrow Mill’s constant companion).

Going back to our visitor he informed us that the floors would be filled with machines and as a result of this there was tremendous noise during the manufacturing process, to the point that staff could not verbally communicate with each other as they simply could not hear one another above the noise of the machinery.

The solution to this was clogs. The workers and any maintenance men carrying out repairs were made to wear clogs. By stamping their feet on the Canadian cedar wood flooring would attract the attention of others and then the gestures would begin. Interestingly enough the sound that the clogs made on the floor could be heard above the machinery. He also advised us that the traffic was a lot lighter in 1975 and that there was no M6!

We also had a former customer who advised us once that as a young man he was punched at Ensor Mill for whistling, but that’s another story…