Allen Mill a brown field site is a ‘green’ development, based on sustainability and a concern to preserve an important part of the cultural heritage of the Allen Valleys. Original buildings from the time Allen Mill was the centre of lead smelting and silver separation in the Allen Valleys have been restored and the site has undergone a substantial programme of conservation, restoration and rebuilding to provide space for 10 businesses –a vital boost to the economy of the Allen Valleys. Businesses working from Allen Mill include Red Onion Kitchen Design, The Spice Mill Indian restaurant and take-away, Foxytails, M&R Signs and Old Stone Vets. The Allendale Brewery premises are also part of the site.
Recently extensive work has been carried out on the remains of the Smelt Mill works (a scheduled ancient monument) at Allen Mill with aid from the North Pennines AONB Partnership, Heritage Lottery Fund and Historic England. Bingsteads, flues and ore hearths have been revealed and their remains conserved with additional aid from a small dedicated group of volunteers. In the next year work will continue with the volunteers on restoring the remains and interpretation of the site will be included. The site has ample free parking for cars and coaches . A short and enjoyable walk along the East Allen River connects Allen Mill to Allendale Village.
The walk is a sculpture trail and further works can also be seen at Allen Mill where sculptures by eight internationally known artists are on view. More sculpture will be added as the site is developed.