Click here to view previous visits

12 May 2020Whitechurch Silk Mill and Bombay Sapphire Gin Distillery
10 June 2020Chiswick House
14 July 2020Hampton Court Palace and Grounds

Click on a row and scroll to display more details about the Visit

Whitechurch Silk Mill and Bombay Sapphire Gin Distillery
Tuesday 12 May 2020

Whitchurch Silk Mill  

This gem of our industrial heritage is set in the beautiful Hampshire countryside on the bank of the River Test.   Whitchurch Silk Mill is a Georgian water mill that still weaves silk fabrics using Victorian machinery and is the oldest silk mill in the UK still operating in its original building.  We will have a guided tour and will learn how the Mill wove for Thomas Burberry, Thomas Wardle and Warners and made fabrics for shirts and legal gowns. 

Bombay Sapphire Gin Distillery (Laverstoke Mill) 

The first mill on this site was in 903 AD and it is recorded as being a corn mill in the Doomsday book of 1086.  In 1719 Henry Portal, a French Huguenot, converted the mill to make the finest quality hand-made paper.  In 1724 he acquired the contract to supply bank note paper to the Bank of England which continued until 1963.   

In 2010 Bombay Sapphire took over the Mill and developed it into the distillery we see today.  We will have a guided tour giving the history of the site and behind the scenes of the Dakin Still House.  We finish our tour with a visit to the spectacular botanical glasshouses and before departure will enjoy a cocktail (alcoholic or non-alcoholic). 

Tickets for this outing will be available at the March and April lecture meetings 

Visit co-ordinator:  Fiona Moir 020 8681 3010