Melin Sguthan (Union Mill)
The middle one of the Gaerwen-Pentre Berw mills, this is located on a minor road running north from the village centre off the A5. The exact date of origin is not known but early maps and estate documents suggest that it was built before the nearby Melin Maengwyn.
It is called Gaerwen Mill on the early maps and later became known as the Union Mill after it was purchased by a consortium (union?) of Manchester businessmen in the mid 19th century. The third name, Melin Sguthan, may be derived from the Welsh name for the woodpigeon, ysguthan or y sguthan. Perhaps pigeons were nesting in the abandoned and roofless tower.
Guise and Lees relate in their book that pigs were kept in a low building that once stood next to the mill. Many millers kept pigs in this way, as the pigs would readily eat the grain that the millers sometimes kept as payment for the milling instead of money.
This mill was closed in 1913. During the First World War it was set on fire to help in removing the iron machinery in aid of the war effort. The fire weakened the structure so it had some very evident cracks. Despite this, it was sold (see a photo of the sign outside the mill) and renewed planning permission for conversion into a dwelling was applied for in September 2009. Conversion was carried out in 2012, and the resulting dwelling was listed for sale in October 2012. It again came on the market in 2017.
A detailed archaeological survey of the mill, before and during reconstruction, was done by the Gwynedd Archaeological Trust. You can read it on the Coflein site.
See other images of this windmill at:
- Windmill World
- People's Collection Wales
- Geograph, also here.
- Images taken in 1934 and 1936 from the Donald W. Muggeridge Collection of Mill Photographs, University of Kent, Canterbury
View Windmills of Anglesey in a larger map