Tommy Was 'Ere!

A chance to get involved in the Friends of the Flaxmill Maltings' community archaeology project – a dig with a difference!


Some areas of paint removal from the walls of the Cross Mill, during the current renovation works, have revealed graffiti dating back to the building's use as a barracks during the Second World War.

As a result of this the Friends will be organising a project involving the local community, to carefully remove more areas of paint, under the supervision of a qualified archaeologist, to see what else lies hidden. This activity, funded through the Heritage Lottery Fund grant awarded to the Flaxmill Maltings project partners as part of the current restoration works, will also involve recording any exposed graffiti and researching any finds. 

One area that has already been exposed has revealed the name and number of a serving soldier, allowing the Friends to trace his regiment and movements during the war.

Many local people remember when this site was a maltings, but far fewer are aware that it ceased malt production during World War Two so that it could serve as a barracks

. This period is one which we know fairly little about, and through the archaeology project we hope to find out more about the people who trained, lived and worked here during that time.

The project will be launched in mid-October with a meeting and talk at the Mill and a tour of the areas involved. There will be further sessions at Shrewsbury Flaxmill Maltings between 10am and 2pm on the following Fridays, Saturdays and Monday each week up to the 10th of December. Anyone wishing to take part will be able to come to any or all of the sessions depending on their availability.

If anyone has any images, artefacts or knowledge of the period when Shrewsbury Flaxmill Maltings was a barracks, or

if you or a family member were here during that time, the Friends would like to hear from you, as part of this project.

If you are interested in becoming involved, either hands on or as a researcher, or if you have any more information please email [email protected] with ‘Archaeology project’ as the subject line.