Clarence Mill chimney

Chaos and mayhem

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History of the chimney
Page updated Wednesday 2nd March 2011 - see latest news!


Clarence chimney has had its original scaffolding removed and new scaffolding erected by our own Bailey International Steeplejack Co. Ltd. They have been commisioned to fix the loose bricks (picture below) and re-point the top of the tower.

Clarence chimneyWhat went wrong?

In the week beginning 6th September 2010, work was carried out by steeplejacks to remove the foliage of plants growing on the chimney. It seems that during this operation, which was completed by Friday 10th September, it was noted that the plants had dislodged a number of bricks near the top of the stack (see the picture). These bricks were deemed to be a safety risk (why did it take a week to take any action?) - there was a danger of them falling off and precipitating a progressive collapse of brickwork from the top two or three metres of the stack.

The most important thing to note is that the chimney is not said to be in any danger of collapsing - there is simply a concern that bricks may fall from near the top. If they do they will fall down the side of the chimney and land on the scaffolding now erected beneath the damaged area.


The closure of the canalside for a whole week caused significant difficulties to the businesses located on the canalside, including Kellico and, especially, the Café Waterside. The Discovery Centre was also closed for the week. The closure was so devastating to these businesses because pedestrian visitors were not able to cross the canal or the canalside mill yard.

All these premises are open, together with the canal bridge, while the present work is carried out.

What is happening now?

Lowerhouse mill chimneyManned road blockLatest!


The original steeplejacks have removed their scaffolding and new scaffolding is being erected by Bailey International Steeplejack Co. Ltd. of Bollington, all this because Bailey's bid a better price for the repairs. The top of the chimney is being pointed and will not be reduced in height. Hooray for that!

Work has very recently been carried out at the top of the chimney at Lowerhouse mill (pictured right) and similar techniques are expected to be employed at Clarence.