Monday, 21 March 2011

No run-of-the mill story

Pic: Stony Brook Gristmill in Brewster, Cape Cod
Photo by Byron Cain

My American friend Jonathan Mayo keeps me informed about all manner of things going on in the area around Budleigh Salterton's sister-town of Brewster. A few months ago he drew my attention to some photos that he'd taken for his own blog at

Otterton Mill, proud of its signature stoneground wholemeal flour. Three-hour bakery lessons are available by phoning 01395 568521. Book early because I see that tomorrow's course on 22 March 2011 is sold out

Stony Brook Gristmill, a major Cape Cod tourist attraction has been undergoing refurbishment for some time now. I've always taken a special interest in the project because the fact that both the Brewster and the Budleigh areas have their own working mills - both grinding corn as well - seems to be just another delightful similarity between the two towns. Otterton Mill, just a few miles upstream from Budleigh Salterton, is of course just a bit older!

There's an interesting explanation of how Otterton Mill works on the website at

The herring run on Stony Brook, where millions of fish be seen on their way up to spawn in Brewster's ponds

The Brook and the Rover Otter even have their own fish runs near their millstreams, though the sight of Stony Brook's herring is more spectacular than anything I've ever seen at Otterton. But perhaps I haven't been there at the right moment.

Anyway it's good to see that the Stony Brook work has made great progress and that thanks to "old-school craftsmanship" the Cape Cod mill, originally built in 1873, will last for generations to come.

I see that Otterton Mill has two milling sessions tomorrow, from 11.00 am - 12.30 pm, and from 2.00 - 3.00 pm. A full list of milling dates is available by clicking on

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