About Dyemill...

Dyemill History

 

The first recorded information of Dyemill on Arran was from 1758. This was regarding the then tenant David Troy. In 1768 his lease of 4 pounds 3 shillings and 10 pence expired and was eventually renewed in 1770 for £6 – a really big increase. This was increased along with the addition of ten acres of land to £10 per year in 1772. In 1778 Troy attempted to get a plot nearer the shore but he did not like the conditions offered and stayed at the old Dyemill site.

 

The mill was not always a dye mill but was in fact a waulk mill. A waulk was a method of taking fabric especially tweed and make it denser and more felt like by soaking and beating.  In 1807 it seems the process was changed to dying. With the cloth being described as “far from inelegant”! In 1812 the place was referred to as handling flax. The census of 1841 lists a Nicol McNicol as a Dyer and head of the house he seemed to employ an assistant so the business must have been thriving. Twenty years on his son Daniel was a dyer and daughter Margeret , a carder and wool spinner. In 1884 the house is described as a Carding Mill Nicol now 73 (he died 1887)

1891 census states all three daughters were wool carders but the mill closed not long after at the turn of the century. The family however stayed in situ crofting the water wheel remaining for a considerable time. Miss Margaret McNicol died in 1932.

 

The mill was in operation for a considerable time with the clothiers always seeming able and willing to adapt to changes. Today we can still see where the mill wheel would have been situated although a lade which would have been in operation bringing the water to the wheel.

 

All information received from the Heritage Museum, Brodick.