Norse or Click Mills

Huxter Mills, Shetland


A group of three small Norse mills


This is a group of three small mills built along a steeply flowing burn before it falls into the sea. Each mill is built across the burn which had sluice gates which could divert the flow of water when the mill was not in use.  The last mill was in use until the 1940s. Each mill was looked after by three families and could also be used to grind flour for other people. It is estimated a mill could grind a bushel of grain an hour, which is probably the equivalent of 45lb of flour. 

Huxter Mills, Shetland

The mills have dry stone walls with heather thatch over wooden beams.

Huxter Mills, Shetland

The mills were worked by horizontal paddles with nine blades. The paddle could be raised or lowered using  a metal rod or ‘lifting tree’ to alter the height of the upper millstone.  After passing through the paddles, the water runs out of the mill to rejoin the watercourse and the next mill.

Huxter Mills, Shetland

The meal chamber was entered through a doorway in the gable end. The small window above is thought to be a later addition, to give more light. The millstones survive, but not the grain hopper

Huxter Mills, Shetland

One mill is currently being restored.

There is no car access to the mills. They are reached on foot from the end of the unclassified road from Melby to Huxter. There is parking at the road end. The nearest post code is  ZE2 9PL and the grid reference is HU 173571.

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