I read with interest and not total surprise at the increase of the ‘super rat’ population in the Church Mill Pool.
The Church Mill is a well restored and imposing building in the centre of town overlooked by St Thomas’s Church. It is regarded by many as one of the most picturesque areas of the town where people regularly visit to look at the river and feed the ducks.
However when you get to the wall of the mill pool you are greeted with the sight of dirty water, discarded rubbish, active rat population, weeds and an unsightly sand bank in the middle of the river.
When the water flowed THROUGH the Mill the view was far better, the increased volume of water ‘cleaned’ the mill pool, taking surplus duck food away, dirty water was dispersed down stream and the rat population and weed ingress were controlled naturally.
In fact I remember fishing from the bridge of Church Mill as a lad catching Trout and Dace which proved just how healthy the River Rase was in the early 1970’s.
Regrettably the main flow of the river was diverted around the relief channel at the back of the mill when the housing developments were completed, I am not really sure why ?.
This was always regarded as the over flow when the Mill was actively used, not the main path of the river.
I have no doubt that if the mill pool was dredged out and the main water flow was re-instated through the Mill bridge the whole area would look better and be more healthy.
Clearly this will not solve the source of the pollution entering the river through the drains, investigations by the Environment Agency must therefore be ongoing.
Geoff Hill – family connection to ‘Hills Mill’ aka Church Mill
Thorpe Lane, Tealby, Market Rasen