Shrewsbury Flaxmill and Iron Bridge in film to celebrate engineering
Shrewsbury's historic Flaxmill and the county’s famous Iron Bridge will be taking centre stage in a global celebration of engineering feats.
The mill, the grandparent of all skyscrapers, will feature in a video together with the Iron Bridge when the Institution of Civil Engineers marks its 200th anniversary in 2018.
As part of the birthday celebrations, they are producing 200 films which highlight international sites of special engineering significance which have had a major impact on society.
The Flaxmill can be counted as a structure which has had a global impact and Chris Smith of Historic England and director of the Flaxmill Maltings will be filmed on site where he will make a recording about the history of the special structure.
The footage will form part of an exhibition at ICE’s Great George Street, London HQ next month.
ICE West Midlands chair and Shropshire resident Yvonne Aust said: “As we begin to celebrate our 200th year, our bicentenary provides the opportunity to remind people that civil engineers transform people’s lives, safeguard the future for their families and that civil engineering can be a rewarding and creative career for the next generation.
“Civil engineers have for centuries been at the heart of social and economic progress and helped improve the world we live in. I’m proud to live in Shropshire, birthplace of structures like the Flaxmill, and the World Heritage site of Ironbridge, which are both being celebrated for leading the way in engineering innovation.”
Historic England spokesman Alastair Godfrey, project lead at the Flaxmill, said: “As the owners of the Flaxmill Complex, Historic England in partnership with Shropshire Council, the Friends of the Flaxmill Maltings and the Homes and Communities Agency has developed a master plan for the Flaxmill Maltings, which will secure the future of the Spinning Mill, and other historic buildings, and bring it back into productive use.
“The Flaxmill Maltings aspires to be an exemplar heritage-led regeneration scheme that not only rescues a group of outstanding heritage buildings, including the world’s first iron frame building, but also engages an international audience, at the same time as encouraging the people of Shrewsbury and their visitors to appreciate and celebrate the importance of this unique heritage that stands right on their doorstep.”
Alan Mosley, chairman of the Friends of the Flaxmill said he was delighted that the building had been one of the 200 to feature. “This is more national and international recognition for our Flaxmill.
“It just goes to show the importance of the work that we are doing with Historic England and Shropshire Council in seeking to restore the jewel in the crown of Castlefields and Ditherington, Shrewsbury and Shropshire.”
English Heritage’s Tom Jones, speaking about the Iron Bridge said: “We are delighted that the Iron Bridge has been featured in this project. The bridge was a turning point in British engineering, widely considered a wonder of the modern world. This is why English Heritage is currently undertaking a vital conservation project to save the historic structure for future generations to enjoy.
“We hope that by investing in the bridge now, our charity will help inspire the engineers of the future.”