Salts Mill in Bradford, West Yorkshire is a former textile mill. It was opened in 1853 by Sir Titus Salt. Congruent with his Utopian vision, Sir Titus Salt also built the adjoining village of Saltaire to house the mill workers. With cloth production ceasing in 1986, the mill was subsequently purchased by the late Jonathan Silver. The vision being to create a place where culture and commerce could thrive together.
Salts Mill, Saltaire
We were treated to a visit to Salts Mill while staying with friends on what turned out to be a rather wet Saturday morning. Salts Mill is the perfect anecdote to a rainy day in Yorkshire and a very suitable choice for adults and teens alike.
Housed within the three floors of Salts Mill is an array of artwork, shopping and dining. Culture and commerce certainly co-exist here as was intended.
There is also an amazing selection of books that could keep you browsing for hours in this beautiful space.
On the Ground Floor of the Salts Mill, Jonathan Silver created the 1853 Gallery.
The 1853 Gallery displays the world’s largest permanent collection of work by Bradford-born artist, David Hockney.
The giant fax picture, Tennis, was transmitted by fax from Hockney’s studio in LA to Yorkshire. The print was sent in 144 sections and erected in the 1853 Gallery.
Pretty amazing to see up close. Also amazing was having to explain what a fax machine was!
The Arrival of Spring
Also on display in the 3rd Floor Gallery is David Hockney’s ‘The Arrival of Spring’ exhibition. This colourful collection of original works were actually drawn by David Hockney on his iPad and scaled up for prints.
Café in to the Opera
Also on the 3rd Floor is Café in to the Opera, so called because of its proximity to the entrance of one of David Hockney’s opera sets that were displayed here. The décor of Café in to the Opera, as you can see, is incredibly opulent but unfortunately for us, with it being half-term, it was a long wait for a table. There are several places to eat here at Salt Mill, but this one took our fancy for obvious reasons.
The village of Saltaire itself has a lovely selections of independent shops and eateries including the very aptly named Bar and Restaurant ‘Don’t Tell Titus …..’. With his sympathies towards the temperance movement, Titus made sure there were no public houses or saloons in the village. Hence ‘Don’t Tell Titus ….’!! We did enjoy some well earned sustenance here in the form of food and drink but our lips are firmly sealed!
In 2001, Saltaire became a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
With ample parking and free entry to Salts Mill, a visit to Saltaire is definitely a good days entertainment should you find yourself in the area.