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The Old Cotton Mill - Friday 13th July 2018



Join Lost Ghost Nights as we investigate this EXCLUSIVE closed to the public old cotton mill in Haworth.

There are only 12 available places for the bravest individuals who dare to join us on this X-TREME ghost hunt event.

This site is over 400 years old and the current cotton mill was build in the late 1700's. This location is CLOSED to all other companies and the public and we are the only people to have access. Dare to join us as we walk around this old mill where ghosts have been sighted going back to the late 1800's. Ghostly apparitions and poltergeist activity are rife in the location along with frequent audible phenomena heard and experienced.

Dare to join us as we investigate this old mill and haunted land around it?

Your event includes the following:

    • A welcome meet and greet meeting;
    • A health and safety briefing;
    • A group vigil in one of the most active locations with our team mediums;
    • Smaller intimate vigils with only 12 guests in the location;
    • A paranormal equipment vigil where we let you try out all the most advanced paranormal investigation equipment including a thermal camera, night vision camera's, UV Spectrum video and photo, Mel meters, K2 Metres, EVP recorders and more;
    • A traditional vigil where we will try old methods including Ouija boards with our mediums, a Victorian seance, table tipping and trigger object experiments;
    • Lone vigils and free time. We give you a chance to explore on your own. We also offer a lone vigil for the bravest!
    • Full complimentary tea, coffee, soup, water and light snacks;

There has been a mill on the site of Ponden Mill and no one knows for certain when the first mill was. It was likely to have been a corn mill in the late 1500's or early 1600's. Ponden Mill was the first textile mill built in Stanbury and one of the first in the whole region. It was built by the Heaton family of Ponden Hall who had various business interests including about 40 worsted spinners working in their homes.

After 1787 the price of worsted fell dramatically and the Heaton's felt that switching to the Cotton industry made financial sense. So the plans to build Ponden Mill were made and work started in 1791.

Oak was brought in from as far away as Barnsley and the mill was completed in 1792. Production then began. Cotton bales ended their long journey, usually from the southern states of the United States, by being taken on carts from Colne to Ponden Mill. Then the cotton was woven into yarn and then made into cloth, and then journey reversed as the finished goods were sold in many cases back to the places that grew the cotton.
The workers of Ponden came from the local area and included children. For example the Children of John Taylor of Stanbury (Henry and Martha) were sent to work at Ponden by their father and they were paid Three shillings and nine pence weekly. The documentation doesn’t say how old they were but some cotton mills employed children as young as 7. Frequently their parents were also employed at the mill.

Children were given the worst jobs in the mills since small fingers and nimble bodies could get in and under machinery that adults couldn’t. The Factories act of 1833 did improve their conditions greatly but it was still a difficult and dangerous life.

Ponden Mill was originally powered by a 29 foot diameter, and 12 foot wide, waterwheel. The wheel was originally inside the building which is slightly unusual, but Cotton needs a damp environment for spinning so perhaps that is the reason for the positioning.
The mill had large windows for its day but internal lighting was still necessary. Unfortunately all that was available was tallow candles and oil lamps. The resulting fire of 1795 caused severe damage at the mill and some signs of burning can still be seen. The Heaton’s had fire insurance and repairs were quickly done and the mill put back into production.

The next 50 years weren't great for Ponden Mill due to the Napoleonic Wars in Europe and the mill switched back to worsted spinning. It was eventually sold in 1823 to a new owner. The new owner felt that water power alone was not enough for the mill and installed the first steam powered equipment to run alongside the waterwheel. The fortunes of the mill were to be hit again during the American Civil War but the mill survived into the 20th century. The mill only got electricity in 1937 and the same year the waterwheel was dismantled. The cotton mill finally ceased after 182 years of cotton production in 1973.

The new owners took over and ran it as a linen shop, tourist shop and café until 2008 when the Ponden Empire finally ceased. Sadly, within a week of closing the mill was vandalised and most of the roof tiling, flooring and wiring was removed. The mill then sat derelict and empty for 6 years until the current owners took over in 2014.


Ponden Mill is most definitely haunted. There has been a wealth of incidents and sightings over the years. There is a Victorian lady who likes to visit a small upstairs room, as well as a well-dressed gentleman who likes the first floor.

However the stories of the children are unique. When Ponden was converted into a shop in the 70’s they had toys on the top floor, and apparently the staff had real problems keeping the stock on the shelves, because every morning the toys would be out of their boxes and spread around the floor.

Another staff member told the story of how it was her job to lock up the building after everyone had left for the night. As she was doing so she heard a boy crying. She and a colleague searched the mill repeatedly and there was no one in the building. Older local people confirmed that there was the ghost of a boy who died after getting his arm caught in one of the machines.

The current owners report poltergeist activity and have caught an apparition on camera when the mill was empty and derelict. They also report footsteps and sound of machinery often, it is so loud and distinct they often get up in the dead of night to check no one has smashed windows or kicked down the doors.

Outside voices are often heard and screams have been reported by the old stone bridge over the stream where two ladies were reported to have drowned in the 1800's.

If you have booked on our event you will have received a confirmation email when your invoice was paid in full. On there is your link to access the event information screen. 

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