Mill race on the Nidd at Birstwith
Birstwith Mill on Wreaks Road is run by Kerry Ingredients, a food products manufacturer. The River Nidd provided water for the mill, and although sluice gates and a mill race exist, the water wheel no longer turns—an existing weir provides the mill with a head of water. The mill race rejoins the river downstream. About one mile upstream is a packhorse bridge.
The local public house is the Station Hotel which acts as a meeting place, and venue for organised charity events such as the Birstwith Coast 2 Coast Cycle Challenge. The village has a store and post office, and a doctor's surgery which is part of a Nidderdale medical group. Sport facilities include a cricket pitch, tennis courts, and a snooker room.
The village had a railway station on the NER line running between Harrogate and Pateley Bridge. The goods yard became Birstwith Grange, a housing development for commuters. The railway line continued along the Nidd Valley and was used in the construction of Scar House and Angram reservoirs.
A village primary school and a Reading Room, built and donated by the owner of the local Swarcliffe Hall around 1880, still exist today. In the mid-1970s Swarcliffe Hall was sold and the contents auctioned, the building became a private prep school. Today Birstwith has a Church of England primary school, and a private school which occupies Swarcliffe Hall.
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