Special events

  1. Two sculptures of tall thin towers in the gardens surrounded by tress and bushes, a small building is in the background

    Origins of Middle-Earth: J.R.R. Tolkien and Sarehole Guided walk , at Sarehole Mill.

    Selected Sundays
    A guided walk introducing the scenery that inspired J.R.R Tolkien.
  2. Path to brick-built water mill buildings

    Explore Sarehole Mill , at Sarehole Mill.

    First Saturday of the month
    Enjoy the sights and sounds of our traditional 18th Century water mill at your own pace.
  3. Santa sitting by a window and waving, surrounded by festive fairy lights

    Santa and a Slice at Sarehole Mill , at Sarehole Mill.

    Visit Santa's Grotto and grab a slice of pizza at Sarehole Mill.
Two brick-built buildings meet to from a corner of a brick-paved courtyard.


Walk in the footsteps of one of the most famous authors of all time and discover the inspiration behind the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings trilogy. JRR Tolkien grew up across the road from Sarehole Mill and in later life he would draw on its rural surroundings to create Middle-earth.

There are also connections with another Birmingham son. Matthew Boulton, manufacturer and business partner of engineer James Watt, leased the building between 1756 and 1761 and used it as a ‘flatting mill’ to producing sheet metal to make buttons.

A Spark That Fires the Engine

A Spark That Fires the Engine is a poem by Birmingham poet Casey Bailey about how J.R.R. Tolkien's childhood memories of Sarehole provided the inspiration or "spark" of creativity that produced his wonderful stories of Middle-earth in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

Casey Bailey is an award winning writer, performer and educator, born and raised in Nechells, Birmingham, UK. Casey was the Birmingham Poet Laureate 2020 - 2022.

Read more in the A Spark That Fires the Engine story.

Sarehole Mill Opening Times

The Shop (11am - 4pm) and Pizza in the Courtyard (12noon - 3pm) are open Wednesday to Sunday.

Guided tours of Mill on Friday (1.30pm), Saturday* (11.30am and 1.30pm) and Sunday (1.30pm). The inside of the Mill is not open on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Pre-booking advised.

*First Saturday of the month the Mill is open 11am - 4pm (no guided tour).

Closed: From 18 December - 2 January (inclusive).

People walking up a path to brick-built water mill building, fence and millpond to the left and planting to the right of the people.
Ticket prices

Address: Sarehole Mill, Cole Bank Road, Birmingham, B13 0BD.