Blenheim Estate Sawmills

Blenheim Palace Sawmills, Swan Lane, Combe, Oxfordshire OX29 8ET

This development lies on the historic Blenheim Estate and follows the stunning success of the iconic Cowyards Offices completed in 2006 and now let to Ridge.

Since completion, the development has attracted a number of businesses who have seen the advantages of locating on the Blenheim Estate, at an address that combines sensitive regeneration of traditional rural space, efficient business accommodation with a classical quality and style.

The Blenheim Estate Sawmills scheme provides a range of converted offices from 126 sqm - 463 sqm, and newly constructed business units from 103 sqm - 411 sqm. Relocating to Blenheim Estate Sawmills can provide a truly unique opportunity to lease business premises and be part of the next stage in the exciting life of the Sawmills.

History of the Sawmills

The Blenheim Palace Sawmills form part of the Blenheim Estate. There has been a mill on this site since Saxon times; the Domesday survey of 1086 refers to a mill at 'Cube', which is known to be Combe, and it is reasonable to assume that the mill had existed for some time before that. In those days the village of Combe was also in the valley, east of the mill, but it was deserted in the fourteenth century, possibly as a result of the Black Death and now stands at the top of the hill about a mile from the mill, around the fourteenth century church. The present sawmill dates from the mid-nineteenth century and was originally powered by a water wheel and, in times of drought, a beam engine, both of which survive and are currently being restored to working order.

The beam engine bears the date 1852, but it has been suggested that blocked windows on the east side of the building indicate avoidance of window tax, thus dating the building prior to 1851. At the same time as the engine was installed a new breast shot water wheel was fitted at the opposite end on the existing wooden spindle remaining from an earlier wheel. The mill machinery, including the forge blower and the whetstone on the ground floor, a band saw and lathes within the upper floor driven via flat belts from pulleys on the line shafting, which could now be turned by either water or the mill machinery.

The two sources of power allowed work to continue regardless of the state of the river, and the increased reliability meant that other processes could be carried out here also.

For further information please see: www.combemill.org

 

Location

Blenheim Palace Sawmills is located on Swan Lane between Long Hanborough and Combe, approximately 8 miles North West of Oxford offering good access onto the A40 and A44 and thence to the Oxfordshire market towns and to all parts of the South and Midlands via the national trunk road network.

The Blenheim Palace Sawmills are situated on the outskirts of Long Hanborough, roughly 1 mile from where frequent commuter services are provided from Long Hanborough Train Station to London Paddington (1 hr 10 mins travel time).

Blenheim Palace Sawmills are set within the Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and offers attractive views of the River Evenlode. The site accomodates the historic Grade II listed, Combe Mill, celebrated as one of the few surviving dual-power mills in Britain.