There was no-one at home at the mill in Laxarby. We saw that the old mill is used as a cafe. But only when the owners are at home, and they weren’t today.
We are interested in the construction and the history of the mill. But we do not know if the mill has been rebuilt for electricity production, which is being done in some places. Or if it is completely closed.
The mill in Laxarby proves to be an extensive facility. We walked around and peered in among the nooks and bushes, and there we found memories. Memories recalling something that seemed to be not too distant palmy days.
A few days ago, we happened to have a conversation with a journalist who knew some things about rapids and mills and small power stations. I have thought earlier that current legislation wants to force modernization of all small power stations in brooks and streams. My informants have said that this makes it impossible to build such hydroelectric power, if you do not want to wipe out the old dam structures that give them their character of cultural heritage.
The journalist we spoke to meant that there are different views on this legislation. And that it may be necessary for work environment and safety that old-fashioned designs are replaced by new ones. However, the main purpose of the new legislation, we have just heard, is apparently to restore the streams to their natural state. But then, it seems, small-scale hydroelectric power will be more or less out of the question.
The mill in Laxarby looks inconspicuous when you first enter the yard. And the stream, or rather the brook where the mill lies, does not change that impression. How have they been able to extract power from this trench?
But the insignificant impression changes when we look closer. First, there are machine parts from replaced turbines that capture our eyes. Then we see a water culvert in wood that seems to be of significant capacity. It seems relatively intact at some distance in any case.
We walk up a slope, and there, behind tall bushes and laden wild raspberry cane, lies a dam construction of surprising dimensions. Surprising for us, given the limited water supply down at the mill building.
As we walk along the gravel road, we see that the mill has had a proper water magazine. Upstream of the pond and road bridge lies a smaller lake. Översidetjärnet, which has certainly given enough capacity to drive the mill in Laxarby.
We had exciting insights into what has been and is still to be seen here. Of course, we became curious to know more about the story around the mill in Laxarby. We’ll have to wait till our next visit. Then we hope that the owners are at home.