Built in 1804 on the earlier mill's foundations by William Strutt, it is one of the oldest surviving examples of an industrialised iron framed, 'fire-proof' building and is now recognised as one of the most important industrial buildings in the world; as such, is a central attraction in the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site.
The mill was one of the most technically advanced building of its time, incorporating an iron frame and brick arches, to make the building "Fireproof". Considerable thought was given to the individual building components. For instance, iron beams were 'turtle-backed' that is, deeper in the middle, where they were under the greatest stress.
The Mill houses a museum which shows the story of cotton and the growth of the industrial revolution. There are events organised at the Mill throughout the year.