Map ref. SD938251



Known occupiers





HINCHLIFFE William & George










Notes from John Travis, contemporary historian:

Holebottom Mill, which was in the tenancy of Messrs. Hinchcliffe Brothers of Crag-vale, when gas was laid on to that district, say from 1830 to 1840, they had in their service a man who went by the name of "Neddy Wuff." Neddy had something to do with the gas, and there was an explosion in which Neddy was involved. It appears that he was overcome by the fumes and was carried home in a state of semi-consciousness, but he always thought he had been blown up, and had alighted at Meadow-bottom near his own home. Seemingly those on the job never disabused his mind of that impression, but let him go on telling it for a fact. The writer heard him telling the story in Todmorden on a Saturday night about 1838, and some of his hearers remarked

"Why, Teddy, it wor a wonder tha' worn't killed,"

to which he assented, but seemingly did not know that it had not occurred exactly as he related it.

Holebottom Mill was the property of Abraham and George Stansfield, formerly cotton spinners, but was then tenanted by the Hinchcliffe Bros., of Crag Vale.

John Helliwell & Sons of GREENHURST HEY bought Holebottom Mill and built a weaving shed. The old mill was part water, part steam. The rooms were low and narrow, and poorly lighted. In about 1860, alterations, including a new chimney, boiler, engine and up to date machinery, were effected. Because of the disadvantage of the hillside site, with the expense of carriage of coal and cotton, they were already struggling before the cotton famine, and failed during that. Robert Fielden of INCHFIELD and BIRKS MILL then bought the mill.

Robert Fielden & Sons re-started cotton spinning and manufacturing, and continued for many years, but gave up because its situation and structure were unsuitable for the trade. The machinery was sold.


Additional information

partly researched, recorded and referenced by Mrs Sheila Wade Hebden Bridge WEA Local History Group


Abstract of Title to Lower Houghstone Farm:

  1. 27th December 1786 – John Ingham to George Stansfield
  2. 26th May 1818 – George Stansfield snr to George Stansfield jnr.
  3. 30th March 1819 – George Stansfield jnr to Abraham Barker (mortgage)
  4. 2nd July 1831 – Abraham Stansfield & others to John Stansfield (release)
  5. 25th August 1831 – Thomas Eastwood (1), Hannah Stansfield & others (2), John Stansfield (3) assignment
  6. 6th April 1849 – John Stansfield & others to William Sagar, conveyance.


Stansfield Township map 1805

Factory marked at Holebottom


Stansfield Township valuation 1805

Holebottom; factory; 2 cottages; part of building; owner George Stansfield; occupier Abraham Stansfield; annual value £25.


Crompton’s 1811 spindle enquiry

Holebottom, 1,440 mule spindles, 6 x 20doz.



Abraham and George Stansfield, Holebottom, in accounts book of Jeremiah Jackson, who supplied them with a carding engine for £72 and a drawing frame for £20.1s.0d.


Stansfield Township map 1816

Holebottom Mill shown but not named on land owned by George Stansfield.


Leeds Mercury 23rd May 1818

Holebottom Mill, Stansfield, for sale 28th May. Mill is 3 and 2 storeys, 36 yards by 12 yards, steam engine and water wheels. Machinery – carding engine, stretcher, drawing frames, 12 mules, owner George Stansfield.



Abraham Stansfield, Holebottom, in accounts book of Jeremiah Jackson


Leeds Mercury 20th February 1819

Bankrupt – Abraham Stansfield, Holebottom near Todmorden, fustian manufacturer.


Baines 1822

Abraham Stansfield, Holebottom, cotton spinner


Baines 1824

Abraham Stansfield, Holebottom, cotton spinner


Pigot 1828-29

Abraham Stansfield, Holebottom Mill, cotton spinner


Parson & White 1830

Abraham Stansfield, Holebottom Mill, cotton spinner


Liverpool Mercury Friday February 8th 1833

A dreadful accident took place a few days ago in the establishment of Mr. Abraham Stansfield, cotton spinner, of Hole Bottom near Todmorden. The dress of a young woman, aged 16 years, was caught by an upright shaft, and in spite of all efforts made to disentangle her from the perilous situation, every article of clothing was torn from her body, all her limbs, except one, were fractured, and her back cut and torn to a frightful extent. The right arm above the elbow, both thighs, one in two places, and one leg were fractured, both ankles were dislocated, the left ankle sustained a compound dislocation, with considerable protrusion of the ankle bone through the skin. Two drawing frames were in her way as she was taken round by the shaft, which her body removed from their position, or she would not have survived, it is supposed, for a moment. The unfortunate creature was so squeezed that blood spouted from her mouth and ears. A piece of tin, a fragment of a case once belonging to the shaft, being near the shaft, inflicted gashes in her back as she revolved. She is still living, and hopes are entertained of her recovery.


Pigot 1834

Abraham Stansfield, Stansfield Cottage, cotton spinner.



W. & G. Hinchcliffe, Holebottom, in accounts book of Jeremiah Jackson.


White 1838

William & George Hinchcliffe, Hole Bottom, cotton spinners


White 1842

William & George Hinchcliffe, Hole Bottom, cotton spinners and manufacturers.


Walker 1845

George Hinchcliffe, Hole Bottom, cotton spinners and manufacturers


White 1847

William & George Hinchcliffe, Hole Bottom, cotton spinners and manufacturers.


Halifax Guardian 17th August 1850

To be sold 2nd September 1850. Cotton Mill and loomshed called Holebottom Mill, Stansfield, with steam engines of 24hp and 8hp. late in the occupation of Messrs Hinchcliffe.


White 1853

John Helliwell & Sons, Holebottom, cotton spinners.


Stansfield Rates Books 1854-60

Holebottom; owned and occupied by John Helliwell; mill and power; rateable value £168.5s.0d.


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 4th December 1858

Fire at Helliwell’s Holebottom Mill.


Todmorden Post Office Directory 1861

John Helliwell, Holebottom Mills, cotton manufacturer.


The Leeds Mercury Thursday January 21st 1864


In the court of Bankruptcy for the Leeds District, Commercial buildings, Leeds. In the matter of John Helliwell, of Holebottom Mill, near Todmorden, in the county of York, cotton spinner, manufacturer and farmer, by whose petition for adjudication of bankruptcy has been duly filed, under which he has been adjudged a bankrupt.


Halifax Guardian 26th March 1864

Bankruptcy of John Helliwell, manufacturer and farmer of Todmorden. Debts £22,679.4s.0d. Assets about £2,000.


The Leeds Mercury Saturday May 7th 1864


Sale by auction

Lot 3

All that mill or factory called “Holebottom Mill”, near Todmorden aforesaid, with weaving shed, engine house, boiler, boiler house, offices and other outbuildings, mill gearing, gas piping and fixtures, reservoirs and water rights thereto belonging, lately the property and in the occupation of the said Mr. Helliwell.Also all the vacant plot of land, near or adjoining thereto, containing by estimation one-acre statute measure.

And also all that excellent messuage called “Stansfield Cottage”, near Todmorden aforesaid, and adjacent to the said mill, with the garden, outbuildings and appurtenances thereto belonging, in the occupation of Misses Aspden.

The mill and shed are substantial erections, stone built, and are situate within a short distance from the town of Todmorden. The mill, comprising bottom room, card room, mule room, top room, cotton room, engine rooms and boiler house, contains and area of 2,118 square yards; scutch room and passage, 122 square yards; wheel race and open shed, 260 square yards; warehouse and counting house, 200 square yards; smithy and cart shed, 54 square yards; loom shed, 524 square yards; total 3,278 square yards of flooring, inside measure.


White 1866

Robert Fielden, Holebottom and Birks Mill, cotton spinner & manufacturer.


Stansfield Rates Book 1867-88

Owned and occupied by Robert Fielden; Holebottom; mill and power; rateable value £113.11s.6d.

1867 – new engine £11.15s.0d.

1880 – re-valued £215.10s.0d.

1881 – re-valued £166.15s.0d.

1884 – 30hp.

1890 – empty


Halifax Guardian 11th May 1867

Burst mill dam at Holebottom Mill, allowing whole of water to run out. Some embankment washed down twice previously.


Kelly 1871

Fielden, Robert and Sons, cotton spinners & mfrs – Hole Bottom Mill and Birks Mill.


Slater 1875

Fielden, Robert and Sons, cotton spinners & mfrs – Hole Bottom Mill and Birks Mill.


Kelly 1877

Fielden, Robert and Sons, cotton spinners & mfrs – Hole Bottom Mill and Birks Mill


Halifax Guardian 3rd May 1879

Holebottom Mill closed for 1 month


Halifax Guardian 28th June 1879

Fielden & Sons, Holebottom Mill, still not open.


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 1st August 1879

Holebottom Mill, 10,000 spindles and 100 looms, closed.


Halifax Courier 9th August 1879

Holebottom Mill commenced running after entire stoppage of about 3 months.


Halifax Courier 23rd August 1879

Holebottom Mill flooded and cotton destroyed.


Todmorden and Hebden Bridge Advertiser 2nd January 1880

Robert Fielden & Sons, Holebottom Mill, weavers accepted further wage reduction of ½d per cut.


Halifax Courier 28th November 1885

Reported that Holebottom Mill, owned by Robert Fielden & Sons, which has been closed for a few years, is about to recommence.


Manchester Examiner 22nd July 1887

Holebottom Mill closed.


Stansfield Rates Book 1895-99

Occupied by J. W. Shuttleworth; owned by Robert Fielden; laundry; Holebottom; rateable value £12.15s.0d.


Kelly 1897-1908

Joseph William Shuttleworth, Holebottom Mill, steam laundry