A brief history of the former India Mill on New Hall Lane, Preston

Posted on - 4th June, 2014 - 6:30pm | Author - | Posted in - Fishwick, History, Nostalgia, Photos, Preston Locations, St Matthews

New Hall Lane Mill Complex, Preston. Aerial Image (annotated)As the planning approval application for the Mulbury Homes building project has now been accepted, it spurred us on to looking into the history of the former India Mill which stood on the future building site for almost 140 years.


Looking at the aerial image above, the building with the red marking around it, is the site of the former India Mill buildings; it stretched between New Hall Lane (as marked) and Ribbleton Lane (as marked) with the main larger part of the mill being near to New Hall Lane.

William Calvert, a cotton spinner and manufacturer, originally opened the mill in 1864. The Calverts also had cotton mills over many years in other locations, Flatts Mill in Walton-Le-Dale was one of them.

India Mill was in the hands of William Calvert and Sons until the early 1930’s when, at that point in time the mill appears to have ceased trading and the building takes on many new roles in its remaining existence. As a point of interest, on the 1890 ordinance survey maps, there is a water-well indicated as being located on the northern sector of the mill site and I presume that this was in use at the time.

Since 1932 the premises was partly occupied by T. L. Robinson’s, Bottlers Company and at the same time another part was occupied by a leather manufacturers.
Also around that time another section of the India Mill building was occupied by the Moveo Car Company who manufactured various vehicles, including the Touring Car and also, in a further section of the building there was the Neon Signs (Preston) Ltd company.

Moveo Car Co. Ltd., & Neon Signs, India Mill, New Hall Lane, Preston


The Moveo Touring Car c.1933

The Moveo Touring Car c.1933

There were several other companies who moved into the various sections of the mill premises and then disappeared over the next 25 years or so. Then, in the early 1960’s, the Bond Cars Ltd set up their manufacturing plant there and produced quite a variety of vehicles over the next few years.

Bond Cars Ltd., India Mill, New Hall Lane, Preston 1964

Bond Cars Ltd., India Mill, New Hall Lane, Preston 1964

From the early 1970’s the India Mill building was partly demolished and the remaining section became a warehouse. Eventually, the whole building was demolished and became what can now be seen today, just a large patch of wasteland.

Many thanks goes out to the Preston Digital Archive for use of their images in this article.

Do you recall the India Mill and did you ever work there? Let us know in the comments below.


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