Derdale Street


Map Ref. SD942241


Known occupiers


Derdale Cotton & Commercial Co. Ltd.


MADEN Henry & HOYLE Caleb



HOYLE Caleb Ltd.

HOYLE Philip

HOYLE Joshua


COCKCROFT John & Sons Ltd.





HILL T. & Co.


Heatherdale Fabrics


J. C. S. Textiles



Illustrated history


Derdale Mill, built in 1861, was another attempt at co-operative manufacturing under the management of the Todmorden (Derdale) Cotton and Commercial Company. The rearing party was held in April 1862, but by November 1869, the Company was bankrupt. The shareholders held an extraordinary general meeting in Sobriety Hall. After a statement of the liabilities and position of the company, it was resolved to wind up the concern, and Mr. Walker of Bury, Mr. Joseph Stansfield and Mr. Joseph Barker of Todmorden, were appointed liquidators to carry out the same. This was probably as a direct result of the Cotton Panic caused by the American Civil War, resulting in a severe downturn in trade for all cotton manufacturing businesses.


The Derdale sizing house, photo by kind permission of Roger Birch

On 9th February 1870, Caleb Hoyle and Henry Maden of Rockcliffe House, Bacup, purchased the mill for £9,120. The mill was safe, and continued in the production of textiles until about 1996.
Caleb Hoyle was born in 1840 in Bacup, the youngest son of Joshua Hoyle who was the head of the firm J. and J. Hoyle Brothers of Olive and Meadow Mills in Bacup. He was educated at Mount Pleasant Wesleyan Day School in Bacup, and his father taught him the finer skills of the manufacturing business. In 1861, when he was 21, Caleb was still living at home in Slack Bottom, Bacup, with his parents and was working for his father as a book-keeper. In July 1870, Caleb married his partner's niece, Sarah Maden Hodson of Southport, and together they set up home at Harley Villas in Todmorden.

York Street Chapel

Caleb had never been a working class man, having been brought up in a rich man's house with all the comforts money could buy. However, he was not one to sit back and enjoy a leisurely life. Not only did he work hard to build up the business, he also poured his energies into public and religious life.
He was a life-long member of the Wesleyan Society and a Trustee of YORK STREET CHAPEL in Todmorden for the whole of his time in Todmorden. He was not just a member of the Chapel, but was Treasurer to the Trust and also Treasurer to the Wesleyan Foreign Missionary Society. When the new Sunday school was built for the chapel in 1906, Caleb laid one of the corner stones and his name is engraved on the stone for posterity.

Derdale was extended and modernised under the capable management of Caleb, although not immune from tragedy and controversy.


The firm of Maden & Hoyle was prosecuted for contravening the Factories Act on at least one occasion. It was accused of employing two young persons at Derdale Mill during the lunch hour. On 11th October 1877, the case was heard before Abraham Ormerod and John Fielden, Magistrates, at Todmorden Town Hall. The first case was withdrawn as the witness was not straightforward in his mode of giving evidence and the Magistrates recorded that they did not feel justified in relying on it. In the second case, the offence was proved. However, the firm issued summonses against the spinning overlooker and the self-acting minder in charge at the time, so the magistrates were lenient and decided that there should be no fine, just a requirement for the firm to pay costs of 9 shillings. The self-acting minder, Charles Voase, was convicted of the offence and fined £1 plus costs of 18s.6d.


On 18th July 1879, a terrible accident occurred. The flywheel from a weaving shed engine exploded into pieces, killing a woman named Sarah Pilling and injuring two others, Mary Escritt and Mary Mills. There was extensive damage to the property. An Inquest jury later returned a verdict of accidental death on Sarah Pilling.


In 1890, Caleb's partner, Henry Maden, died and the partnership was continued by his son up to March 1895. Then, Caleb Hoyle took over as sole owner of the now huge concern. At that time, Caleb had the largest local rates assessment for one individual in the whole of the Todmorden Union. He employed over 600 people in the mill and paid out nearly £500 a week in wages.

In addition to the mill, he owned 72 cottages in the Millwood area where many of his workforce lived. By now, Caleb and his large family were resident at the lovely Roomfield House in the town, remaining there until his death many years later.

Caleb was heavily involved in local politics as a member of the School Board, the Local Board and the West Riding County Council. It was no surprise to his contempories that, when Todmorden became a Borough in its own right in 1896, Caleb stood for election to the brand new Borough Council as a representative of the Stansfield Ward. He was then given the honour of being chosen by his fellow councillors to become the very first Mayor of Todmorden, a position he held from 1896 to 1899.


By 1904, the business was prospering to the extent that Caleb bought a second mill. This was HOLLINS MILL in Walsden. A few years later, Caleb Hoyle was second only to the Fielden brothers in importance as far as cotton manufacture was concerned. He had 60,000 spindles and 1,600 looms in operation in his two mills - the same number of looms as Fieldens.

In 1914, Caleb died, aged 73. He is buried with his family in a grey granite marble vault at MANKINHOLES CHAPEL.

On being made Mayor, the local almanac reported:

"In social circles, Mr. Hoyle is of an exceptionally genial turn of mind; he is ever ready with his little joke, and always has a smile on his face, and generally seems to prefer the sunny side of the street. He is a thorough business man, and in every respect, a gentleman of superior ability."


Copyright Oxfordshire County Council,

who kindly supplied this aerial picture of the mill,

taken about 1930.

His sons Philip and Joshua took over the mills and in 1923 became a limited company, trading as Caleb Hoyle (1923) Ltd. Philip had responsibility for Derdale. In 1929, Joshua died unexpectedly, leaving behind some financial problems for the family concern. Philip sold Hollins Mill, but continued to run Derdale until 1935. He then took the decision to close, prompted by an ever-dwindling market for his plain calico, and the cost of much needed new machinery.


In 1936, Philip sold the firm for a nominal £5 to the Cockcroft brothers, Leo, ( his son-in-law), Eric and Keith Cockcroft, who were in business at BIRKS MILL in Walsden trading as John Cockcroft & Sons. The spinning section was sub-let to T. Hill & Co. Bedspread Printers.


The mill continued in the textile production industry until about 1996, the last firm being J. C .S. Textiles, who employed just 12 people, warping and sizing blazer, duffle and uniforms. The mill was demolished during the last few years.


Additional information

researched, recorded and referenced by Mrs Sheila Wade

Hebden Bridge WEA Local History Group


Notes from John Travis, contemporary historian:

In 1860-61 a new Joint Stock Company was formed. They leased a large plot on the Kilnhurst Estate. At first only a spinning mill was built – Derdale Mill on Halifax Road on the canal bank. The company failed. The mill was sold to Maden & Hoyle of Bacup for £9,120. They later built a large weaving shed near Sandholme canal bridge, over the road from Derdale.


4th March 1861

Memo and Articles of Association

Incorporated 12th March 1861

Nominal capital is £70,000 divided into 7,000 shares of £10 each.

Price is 2/6d a share then monthly payments of 5 shillings or more.


Samuel Crossley, boot & shoe maker, 6 shares

Henry Hargreaves, overlooker, 30 shares

Joseph Stansfield, cotton manufacturer, 7 shares

Abraham Crabtree, corn miller, 4 shares

Joseph Firth, cotton manufacturer, 6 shares

Thomas Jackson, weaver, 4 shares

Joseph Baume of Gauxholme, clogger, 4 shares

Joseph Greenwood of Castle Street, shopkeeper, 6 shares

Jacob Marland of Gauxholme, carder, 5 shares

Amos Midgley, overlooker, 12 shares


Halifax Courier 23rd March 1861

Contract to let for building a new mill, engine house and boiler house near Roomfield Lane, Todmorden, for Derdale Cotton & Commercial Co.


Langfield Rates Book 1861

Owned and occupied by Derdale Co; Roomfield Lane; office; rateable value £1


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 1st February 1862

Derdale; issuing more shares as building works going ahead at great speed.


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 12th April 1862

Rearing of Derdale Mill. Public tea party and entertainment in one of the large rooms of the mill on Good Friday, 18th April.


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 26th April 1862

Rearing of Derdale.

Nearly 2,000 people present. Company liability limited to £70,000.

The mill is 3 storeys high; 281 feet by 72 feet with engine house and scutcher room on lower storey; throstle room and openers on 2nd storey; in top room will be mules and cotton. On the west side is one of the finest windows in the world at 29’8” x 18’4”.

The boiler house has 5 boilers, 35 feet long by 7 feet diameter and economisers.

It is the intention to build a loom shed for 700 looms, and a warehouse 100 feet x 70 feet, 3 storeys high.

It is also intended to build a number of cottages for the work people, and to make the mill and appurtenances into a little village.

“Misfortune closed share list when they did as many would have been taken up at that time, but now the working classes had other uses for their money”.


Langfield Rates Book 1862-64

Owned and occupied by Derdale Co; Roomfield Lane; 2 offices and land; rateable value £18.19s.8d; small office empty.


Halifax Guardian 23rd July 1864

Contract to let for the erection of a chimney for Derdale Cotton & Commercial Co. Ltd. Todmorden.


Langfield Rates Book 1865-67

Owned and occupied by Derdale Co; Roomfield Lane; mill etc; rateable value £370.13s.0d; empty – quarter rates paid.


White 1866

Derdale Cotton & Commercial Co. Ltd. cotton spinners & manufacturers.


Langfield Rates Book 1868-70

Owned and occupied by Derdale Co; Roomfield Lane; mill etc; rateable value £482.3s.0d; empty – half rates paid.


Todmorden & Hebden Bridge Almanac 9th November 1869

Shareholders of Derdale Cotton & Commercial Co. resolved to wind up the company.


Todmorden & Hebden Bridge Almanac 9th February 1870

Derdale Mill bought by Maden & Hoyle for £9,120.


Langfield Rates Book 1871-74

Occupied by Maden & Hoyle; owned by Henry Maden; Derdale; mill, shed etc; rateable value £936.6s.5d.


Census 1871

Caleb Hoyle, 3 Harley Villas, aged 30, cotton spinner erecting mill.


Halifax Guardian 27th February 1872

Tender for 40 houses to be built at Millwood for Maden & Hoyle, Derdale Mill.


Halifax Guardian 4th April 1874

Tender for the erection of a sizing mill and other additions to Derdale Mill for Maden & Hoyle.


Halifax Guardian 16th March 1874

Strikes at Derdale Mill; weavers advance of wages – master acceded.


Langfield Rates Book 1875-79

Occupied by Maden & Hoyle; owned by Henry Maden; Derdale; mill, shed etc; rateable value £974.6s.5d.


Halifax Guardian 18th May 1878

Mr. C. Hoyle met 250 workpeople in his mill yard and explained about the wage reduction.


The Leeds Mercury Friday November 1st. 1878

Todmorden trade depressed

Maden & Hoyle, Derdale, 824 looms and 33,000 spindles working full time.


Halifax Courier 19th July 1879

Maden & Hoyle, Derdale Mill; Flywheel flew to pieces. 1 person killed and 2 injured, considerable damage to property.


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 1st August 1879

Derdale Mill – 35,000 spindles, 840 looms; stopped owing to breakdown.


Halifax Courier 11th October 1879

Maden & Hoyle, Derdale, running again after standing idle 12 weeks after an accident. 3,500 spindles and 840 looms. 600 people employed.


Langfield Rates Book 1880-93

Occupied by Maden & Hoyle; owned by Henry Maden; Derdale; mill, shed etc; rateable value £1,039.

1881 – rateable value £922

1882 – new weaving shed £40.15s.0d.


Halifax Courier 12th February 1881

Social for 180 weavers employed at Derdale.


Todmorden Advertiser 13th January 1882

Placards issued by Todmorden Spinners Association requesting minders and piecers to keep away from Derdale Mill during the dispute.


Todmorden Advertiser 27th January 1882

Mule spinners at Derdale Mill are out on strike


Todmorden Advertiser 24th February 1882

Derdale strike. Alleged violence and intimidation by trade unionists. 5 men summonsed.


Todmorden Advertiser 10th March 1882

Dispute at Derdale settled. Spinners recommence work on old terms. Dispute has lasted 2 months.


Halifax Courier 1st March 1884

Visit of students in connection with Todmorden Science & Art classes studying the process of cotton to Maden & Hoyle as Derdale Mill is of recent erection and fitted with the latest machinery.


Halifax Courier 12th April 1884

Engine breakdown at Maden & Hoyle, Derdale, will necessitate lengthy stoppage.


Halifax Courier 22nd November 1884

Derdale Mill, Maden & Hoyle, on full time again.


Halifax Courier 29th August 1885

Maden & Hoyle of Derdale Mill on full time, and hands being taken on. Mill has been running 4 days a week for a long time, and only half the looms have been running.


Manchester Examiner 22nd July 1887

Maden and Hoyle, 33,000 spindles and 1,016 looms running 4 days at present.


Todmorden Advertiser 21st March 1890

Maden & Hoyle, Derdale, stopped due to strike in the coal trade.


Worrall 1891

Maden & Hoyle, Derdale Mill; twist and weft; 27,772 spindles; 1016 looms; Manchester warehouse 18a Moseley Street; pay day every Wednesday.


4th March 1892


A Derdale Mill official expressed that any operative working at that firm and joining a trade society would have to leave. Mr. Crowther, secretary of the Rochdale Cotton Spinners Association, Todmorden branch, wrote to J. H. Maden, MP for Rossendale and a partner in the firm Maden & Hoyle, to ascertain the truth. Mr. Maden replied that the mill is in the hands of his partner Mr. Hoyle. Reply from Mr. Hoyle – cannot accept any assistance from you in the management of the business here.


Slater 1895

Maden & Hoyle, Derdale Mill; twist and weft; 27,772 spindles; 1016 looms.


Todmorden & Hebden Bridge Almanac 1897.

1861 – Derdale Mill built by the Derdale Cotton & Commercial Co.

1870 – Mr. H. Maden of Rockcliffe House, Bacup, in partnership with Caleb Hoyle, a Wesleyan Liberal on the County Council.

1890 – Mr. Maden died and his son Mr. J. H. Maden MP for Rossendale took his place.

1895 – The sole owner is now Caleb Hoyle. He employs 600 people, pays £500 a week in wages and owns 72 cottages in Millwood.


Todmorden in Coronation Year 1902

County Councillor Caleb Hoyle JP, Roomfield House, born Bacup 21st August 1840, youngest son of Joshua Hoyle of Olive and Meadow Mills, Bacup. In 1870, Henry Maden of Rockcliffe House, Bacup, in partnership with Caleb Hoyle and later took charge of their own concern at Todmorden. On 9th February 1870 Derdale Mill bought by Maden & Hoyle for £9,120. Henry Maden died in September 1890 and the partnership continued with Mr. J. H. Maden, MP for Rossendale, up to 1895, then Derdale was owned solely by Mr. Hoyle.


E. W. Cockcroft 26th May 1975

Derdale Mill deals with the processing of warps prior to going to Walsden, and part of the shed is let to Heatherdale Fabrics who make upholstery cloths. The storied part of Derdale is leased to T. Hill & Co. for printing, and they have been our tenants there since 1936.