The Mill Stream is first mentioned in the Domesday Book, but the current channel was freshly cut around 1640. The stream, or leat, or lade, was originally fed by a weir and sluice on the river, but work in the 1970s to divert water into Tinwell Pumping Station (which pumps water up to Rutland Water) meant that a small pump was required to keep the Mill Stream flowing. This is operated by Anglian Water.
In 1975 the Mill Stream was 'demained'. This effectively means that the maintenance of it is the responsibility of the land owners on either side. The Environment Agency have no responsibility for the Mill Stream.
The Mill Stream fed King's Mill, a corn mill at the western end of Bath Lane. Formerly known as North Mill, the present Grade II Listed building dates from the 17th Century. The 1930s Ordnance Survey map shows the mill to be 'disused', and it has since become an educational centre and private housing.
During 2009 and 2010 Stamford Rivercare looked into ways that the flow can be improved to prevent the stream silting up, and to improve the habitat for wildlife.
October 2010 - the pump and pipework at Tinwell have been restored by Anglian Water, and now water is reaching the head of the Mill Stream. Stamford Town Council are also talking to the Environment Agency, RiverCare, and the Welland Rivers Trust, about progressive de-silting and clearance of the Mill Stream.
November 2010 - RiverCare and 60 volunteers from Cummins clear the Mill Stream along Melancholy Walk.
June 2011 - months of dry weather have resulted in the river level being too low to supply the Millstream pump.
Summer 2012 - the Mill Stream has been identified as a priority by the Welland Rivers Trust, and they are working with local company Cummins to identify a sustainable solution to feeding water into the Mil Stream.
Collected photos of the Mill Stream
Ordnance Survey map sheet 151.05 (www.alangodfreymaps.co.uk)