Millom Above and Millom Below

Industrial town in Millom parish, Allerdale above Derwent ward, Cumberland. Millom was UD from 1894 to 1934. For history of area before 1860, see Millom Rural.

Acreage:

Millom UD, which covered much of Millom Below township, together with Haverigg (formerly in Chapel Sucken township), comprised 2,511 acres [1,016 ha].


Origins and growth of the town:

Hodbarrow iron mine, which was to become ‘the most productive haematite mine in the British Isles’ developed in early 1860s. Annual output was c.120,000 tons in 1866; by 1880 it had risen to 343,000 tons; and by 1901 to c.400,000 tons. Iron works with two blast furnaces built 1866-7; number of blast furnaces had increased to six by 1874. Rapid influx of workers to mine and iron works was accommodated in a new town, formally inaugurated 1866. Combined population of Millom Above and Millom Below townships stood at around 900 until town of Millom was built but then rocketed: by 1871 population of Newtown and Holborn Hill had reached almost 3,000; by 1891 urban area contained 8,871 inhabitants and population of Millom UD peaked at 10,426 in 1901. Employment in iron industry had begun to decline before First World War: by 1911 population of UD had fallen back to 8,612 and fell to a little over 7,000 by 1951; in 2001 it stood at 7,132. Iron-making continued until 1968 when Hodbarrow mine closed. Other 20th-century industrial activity included manufacture of nylon stockings from 1949, and tannery at Haverigg, making leather for shoe trade, established 1938; closed 1979. Tourism grew in late 20th century: flooded workings at Hodbarrow converted into nature reserve and marina.


Places of worship:

Town church of St George built 1874-7, becoming separate ecclesiastical parish 1879. St Luke’s church, Haverigg, built 1891. Primitive Methodist chapel at Holborn Hill built 1866. Wesleyan Methodist chapel, Queen Street, built 1872; closed 1993; replaced by adjacent former Sunday school building; still in use. Baptist chapel built 1884, replacing earlier chapel of 1867; still in use. Roman Catholic church built 1868; replaced by church of Our Lady & St James, built 1888. Salvation Army fortress, Nelson Street, built 1889; still is use. Bible Christian chapel, Newton Street; demolished. Spiritualist meeting house recorded 1938. Millom Community Church (Pentecostalist) established by 2011. At Haverigg: chapels for Baptists (opened 1869; short-lived as moved to Millom); Bible Christians (built 1873; demolished); Wesleyan Methodists (built 1878; demolished) and Primitive Methodists.


Schools:

School Board formed 1876: built schools at Holborn Hill (c.1879 to 1970) and Lapstone Road (c.1876 to 1970; now Millom Infant School). Older schools closed on opening of Black Combe Junior School 1970. Catholic School in former church by later 19th century; replaced by new building, now St James Catholic Primary School, Lonsdale Road, 1971. Millom Institute (secondary school) built 1905; moved to new premises 1938 and became grammar school; enlarged 1950s to become core of Millom School, opened 1959. Board school at Haverigg by 1897; second school built early 20th century; now Haverigg Primary School.


Other institutions:

Hodbarrow Mining Company hospital opened 1867; rebuilt 1888; closed 1934; demolished 1970s. Infectious diseases hospital, near Hodbarrow Pier, recorded 1897. Modern hospital (Millom Hospital), Lapstone Road. Market hall and local government offices built 1879; police station built 1894. Reading room and library built 1882. Library built 1887. Four public halls by 1901: Millom Public Hall (built 1873), Central Public Hall, Temperance Hall and Co-operative Hall. Recreation hall, St George’s Road, built 1912 with theatre and cinema; now Millom Palladium Theatre and Studio. At Haverigg: reading room by 1897 and assembly rooms by 1901.