Little London Wheel, Rivelin Valley, Sheffield, S6 5PZ.
Little London Wheel, Rivelin Valley, Sheffield, S6 5PZ
Former water-powered grinding Wheel and water management system
Little London Wheel and associated water management system are the remains of a water-powered site that was erected in around 1752. It was one of the smallest sites in the valley and one of the later Wheels to be built. It is thought to have been used for cutlery and file grinding until it was demolished in 1911. The stonework and remains of the building footings and wheel pit are now hard to make out amongst the undergrowth.
The water management system extends to the north-east and south-west of the site of the former mill buildings, feeding from and into the adjacent river. There is a steep stone weir and the former mill dam is largely dry apart from a stream running through from the head goit entry (at the weir) to the well-preserved overflow, which is marked by a small bridge.
The site of the Little London Wheel is about 200 m on the downstream (north-east) side of Glen Bridge (the ‘S Bend’ on Rivelin Valley Road). It is owned by Sheffield City Council and there is open access. A public footpath (the Rivelin nature and heritage trail) passes the site and runs along the dam wall. The trail can be accessed from various points along Rivelin Valley Road, or from the north (Stannington) side of the valley.
A marker post installed at the site by Rivelin Valley Conservation Group gives a brief history and links to a website where further information and pictures can be found. An information board with pictures explains the history of the site.
Little London Wheel is one of the 20 water-powered mills built in the Rivelin Valley (search for ‘Rivelin Waterpower Sites’ on this website for more details). This sequence of Rivelin mills and mill dams forms an essential part of Sheffield’s heritage. They also have a broader national and even international significance in relation to the history of the Industrial Revolution in Sheffield.
Further information and pictures of Little London Wheel and other sites in the Rivelin valley can be found at https://rivelinvalley.org.uk/rivelin-trails-2/. See also the books ‘Walking the Rivelin’, by Sue Shaw and Keith Kendall (6th edition, 2019, Rivelin Valley Conservation Group) and ‘Water Power on the Sheffield Rivers’, by C. Ball, D. Crossley, N. Flavell (Editors), (2nd Edition (2006), South Yorkshire Industrial Society).