Dorset Industrial Archaeology Society

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Visits and Events

Programme  for 2019

DIAS Summer Programme

May -  September

The following provides information on the Summer Programme for 2019. Those wishing to attend the visits should enter their name and email on the lists provided at the evening meetings or contact Ian White on

Tuesday 14th May
Meet at 1-00 pm

Following the talk in April on Brunel's SS Great Britain a guided tour of this historic ship and the museum has been arranged. This will commence at 1.15pm sharp so we shall meet at the entrance to the museum at 1pm. The tour will take us into the dry dock under the glass 'sea' to view the ship from below before stepping back in time in the Dockyard museum and boarding the ship for a tour from the weather deck through the accommodation decks to the recreated engine room.

The adjacent 'Being Brunel' museum is also open and can be visited on the day. The guided tour lasts about one hour so there is time to look at other parts of the museum afterwards.

The group rate, minimum 15 people, is £11.00 each for Seniors plus the cost of the guided tour which will be about £2 each provided we get more than 15 attending. Maximum number for a group tour is 25.

The Dockyard is approximately 30 mins. walk from Temple Meads Station (which is worth looking at in its own right). The m2 bus service can be used from Temple Meads to the SS Great Britain bus stop on Cumberland Road which is about 5 mins. walk from the Dockyard. There is also a park and ride option. For more details see the website at

Should anyone be considering travelling to Bristol the evening before and wish to enter the Museum earlier than the meeting time, please let Ian White know so as suitable arrangements can be made.

Meet at 10-45 am

The evening talk in March will be on Coldharbour Woollen Mill and we are going to follow this up with a site visit in June.. Coldharbour Mill is one of the oldest woollen mills in the country and has been in continuous operation since 1797. It took fleece from all over the world and produced yarn, cloth and textiles.   It is one of the finest working woollen mills where we shall see craftsmen and women producing traditional textiles knitting yarn and rugs. The site was steam powered and we shall visit the boiler house and see various steam engines and auxiliary plant which have been collected from other sites..

Coldharbour Mill is in Uffculme, Devon , post code EX15 3EE, it is about 5 minutes by car from juntion 27 on the M5. We shall meet at 10.45 in the reception for the guided tour starting at 11. The cost will be £11 each including the guided tour.

For more details see


Meet at 1-45 pm

Richard Sims will lead us on a walk round Bridport showing the sites of the rope and twine industry covering traditional walks and factories. The role of non conformists in the town's trade will be mentioned and some merchants house will be pointed out. A steam mill of the 1830's and brewery sites will also be seen. The visit will end at the museum where the new Rope and Twine exhibition can be viewed. An optional extension, by car, could be made to Pymore Mill and the recent development there.

Meet at 2pm at East Street car park. Cost will be about £3 each depending on numbers.

Meet at 10-00 am

Sheildhall is the largest working steamship in the country. As a member of the National Historic Fleet she serves as a sea-going tribute to our Maritime Heritage. Normally based in Southampton doing day trips she is moored at Poole quay during the week prior to the Bournemouth Air Show and is open to the public for viewing.

Commissioned in 1955 by Glasgow Corporation she spent most of her working life taking treated sewage out to sea for dumping, but also carrying passengers for day trips into the Firth of Clyde.

Visits are self guided and there are expert volunteers at various points around the ship to explain the history and workings of the vessel.

It is proposed that we meet on board at 10am and make our own way round the ship. While at the quay the ship is normally under steam with the engines  turning over to maintain the ships stability on the berth so a working engine room can be experienced. There is a cafe on board.

The cost will be £4.00 each which is a donation to the Charity that owns and operates the ship.

Pictures below are of members enjoying previous visits to other sites

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