Ashford Mills

South West England Somerset Ilminster

  • From £355 a night
  • Sleeps 6
  • Quirky & Unique

An eco-friendly Somerset watermill in an idyllic rural location.

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A couple of miles north of the Somerset market town of Ilminster, Ashford Mills is a gorgeous 16th-century water mill that has been converted into a very desirable rural escape. The owners live in the cottage next door and renovated the mill while tending to their small five-acre smallholding, where sheep and goats roam and chickens and ducks produce fresh eggs for breakfast while you bathe in the river. It's a magical place, and we're lucky they decided to share their little slice of paradise with the rest of us.

Originally used for grinding flour and grist, the mill is a unique space, sleeping a maximum of 8 people in a big, open structure which deliberately retains the building's historic features – the main wheel is long gone but they still have the third floor wheel that would have driven the mill's pulley system. It's simply but very comfortably furnished: the floors are open-plan, with a mixture of wooden and stone floors and beams, the walls bare brick and stone, and sunshine floods in through the windows. There is central heating for the winter months, plus a wood-burning stove to keep things super-cosy all year round. The ground floor has a kitchen provided with a dishwasher, hob, oven, fridge, microwave and all the utensils you need. The ground floor also has a double bedroom with bathroom and toilet, while on the first floor there's a living space with a sofa bed, and a second bathroom with toilet, shower and sink. Next floor up, in the attic  there are two king-size beds that can be made into two singles each if you prefer. There is good wifi throughout, Bluetooth speakers, and books and games are provided for rainy days. Bear in mind, though, that some of the ceiling beams are low, and the stairs between floors can be steep – it's a characterful property, for sure, but perhaps not the most accessible!

The mill is a glorious place to relax at any time of year, whether you're a couple looking for solitude or a group of friends searching for a country bolthole to get together.  There's plenty to do nearby – country walks, trips into Ilminster or to nearby attractions like nearby Barrington Court; or you could just spend time exploring the Somerset Levels to the north, or the Blackdown Hills to the south. Best of all, though, make the most of living at this lovely country property for a few days,  strolling the grounds, swimming or kayaking in the river (they have kayaks for guests' use) and enjoying lazy days dining on the produce from the smallholding. It's an all-round, eco-friendly country treat.

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Suitable For

Guest are welcome, even encouraged, to roam freely around our gardens and paddocks, but bear in mind that the animals are free-roaming too so you will encounter goats, lambs, dogs, chickens and ducks on your travels. Dogs are allowed but must be kept under control. The owners live onsite in the cottage and are around tending to the animals or doing general outdoor work so are often on-hand to answer any questions or provide tips.


Set on the edge of the Somerset Levels, there are plenty of walks nearby. The River Isle runs through Ashford Mills, so there is opportunity for wild swimming and kayaking as well as fishing. 

Food & Drink

Ilminster local town has an independent vegetable, baker and butchers shop, as well as a selection of cafes, delicatessens, restaurants, take-aways and pubs. Eating out around the surrounding villages there are plenty to choose from – including The Barrington Boar, The Bell Broadway and The Hatch Inn. 


Available all year round.


£250-£400 per night

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The Owner Says

Set on the banks of the River Isle, Ashford Mills will simply take your breath away. Find tranquility or adventure in this five-acre working small-holding: wander the gardens among the chickens and sheep, live sustainably on our fresh eggs and homegrown veg - or canoe, and wild swim in the River Isle.


Contact Website  07866 506 846 +447952010843  Ashford Mills, Ashford Mill House, Ilton, Somerset TA19 9ED

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Getting There

What3words: prance.wasp.ripen

Ashford Mills is sometimes listed as Old Mill House. The address is Ashford Mill House, Ashford, Ilton, Ilminster TA19 9ED - If you put this postcode into SatNav/Google you will be directed to Ashford House (a pretty house but not The Mill!) When you are outside this house, with it on your right, turn right and you’ll find The Mill just down the lane on your left hand side. It is the first house you come to with parking just beyond.

This link for Google Maps will take you directly to the house.

If you are coming from the South (B358) you will come through Ilton until you pass the Ilton Business Park on your right and then RAF Merrifield airbase on your left. Take the right hand fork in the road and then head downhill into Ashford. At the pretty red brick Elizabethan house (Ashford House) turn right at the T junction and Ashford Mill is just down the road on the left hand side.

If you are coming from the North (B3168) turn onto Cad Road and then the immediate right (signposted Ilford) Continue up the lane for a mile, you will go over a small bridge and then half a mile further we are the first house you get to on your right. The car park is before the house. Please let us know in advance how many cars you are planning on bringing.



  • Gardens & Grounds
  • Groups welcome
  • Parking
  • Wifi
  • Dog-friendly
  • Eco-friendly
  • Family-Friendly
  • Sensational Views
  • Walking
  • BBQs
  • Exclusive hire
  • Quirky
  • Activities
  • Bicycle Routes
  • Fishing
  • Historic
  • Large Property
  • Outdoor Activities
  • Remote location
  • Romantic Retreat
  • Something Different
  • Waterside
  • Wellbeing

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Let us know what you think of your stay.

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Rated ★★★★★ over 6 reviews


Beautiful Mill, lovely stay

Just returned from a few days at Ashford Mills, the Mill is beautiful and charming, and had a wonderful feel. We had a lovely stay, warm and cosy, the bed we stayed in was incredibly comfy, with everything you would need. Friendly hosts and a lovely welcome pack. Excellent location for exploring.
Mar 27, 2023 by RACHEL HILL

Unique and hugely enjoyable

I've stayed in many cottages right across the UK and the vast majority are dull and boring and very much like any house you might find anywhere. Even ancient cottages and houses are usually ridiculously over-modernised internally. Ashford Mills is very different: a beautiful 17th century building saved from dereliction and left recognisably the mill it once was, it has a fairy-tale quality to it with its massive stone walls, huge beams and numerous remnants of mill machinery. We stayed at the end of October and the Mill was perfectly warm yet not horribly over-heated and airless. Outside were some of the friendliest goats I've ever encountered and there are chickens and ducks and the lovely River Isle - there are several kayaks at the cottage and it would be easy to set off for miles down the river which has deep polls and fast shallower reaches. Lots of pubs round about and attractive villages. Best of all was the chance to escape from television, though the wifi works well. I really can't recommend Ashford Mills highly enough.
Oct 27, 2022 by Mr Tom Quinn

Fabulous break in authentic quirky water mill

We enjoyed a fabulous break in this authentic, quirky and homely property, and the owner has restored this mill with a creative eye, keeping many original features. Outside it’s very picturesque with the mill pond and the river running through - perfect for an invigorating dip! Bella the owner generously supplied lots of goodies and was on hand to help but also very respectful of our privacy. In the evening we didn’t feel we had to eat out at all as we had a fabulous fire pit and barbecue and wanted to make the most of the location. If you do venture out there is plenty to see and do locally, a short drive away is an excellent cider farm and also a smokery which we would highly recommend. We look forward to returning!
Apr 23, 2022 by Caroline Monkcom

Me and a group of pals were looking for a nice and secluded few days in countryside surroundings and found Ashford Mills and boy are we glad we did. Everybody loved the place and we had the best time. The house itself is really something. Big, rustic and authentic and full of character. Large spacious rooms with lovely wooden beams and thoughtful and tasteful little decorations that add to the look. There were 6 of us and there were plenty of beds for everyone and all really comfy, everyone slept very well. The kitchen and bathroom facilities were great and we actually used the BBQ both nights to cook a feast and and sit out outside under the stars which was really cool. Its in a great quiet location with a small river running through it and a pond which we swam in and also had some fun with the kayaks. We loved the 3 dogs, the mischievous goats and ducks as company. Bella was a really fantastic host and made us all feel very welcome and happy to be there. We found a nice card with a fresh loaf of bread and some wines on the table which was really nice touch. Theres so many good things to mention about this place, really its was just perfect. The price is also worth mentioning because its an amazing price for such a place for a weekend. We would definitley stay there again.
Jul 21, 2021 by Darren Trendell

Unique, friendly and very memorable

Just returned from four nights at Ashford Mills and am already filled with hope to return in the near future. The host Bella was so warm and friendly it instantly felt like a home from home (not to mention the lovely gang of animals that also live on site). The mill is truly idyllic - every thing you could need for a comfortable and tranquil escape from usual city life. The history of the building and the fantastic location (we enjoyed days out at both Hauser and Wirth in Bruton and the beautiful Durdle Door in Dorset with drive times of an hour or so from the Mill) as well the excellent local amenities and pubs we were able to enjoy. Don't come for slick modernity; come for a truly authentic and special place that is more that worth a few bangs of your head on the low wooden beams. We loved it.
Jun 29, 2021 by Lucy Brown

Simply glorious

This place absolutely blew us away. It's beauty lies in how understated it is. There's nothing surplus to distract you, but it has everything you need, and what is there is really beautiful. The watermill itself is fantastic, light floods in through that big round wheel of a window and lights up the middle floor. Outside the kids immediately got involved in the pond/river, dragging kayaks across the garden, pulling on the lifejackets and pottering around. At 7,5 & 3 they'd never done much kayaking, they have now. The goats are both friendly and funny, constantly popping over to cause some amusing drama or another. And I can't not mention the indoor/outdoor bath, a huge cast iron number that even adults can float in, the barn door open, looking out over the sunset, sipping on a glass of champagne (that Bella left for us). Bella, just like the house, is understated but so welcoming. We were supposed to be off exploring Somerset but we barely left the place.
May 6, 2021 by Louise Flett

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