A new tourist attraction has opened to visitors following a £1m restoration project.

Eskdale Mill, in Boot, Eskdale, opened its doors on Wednesday following the National Lottery-funded project, which was completed ahead of schedule.

The Grade II listed building is the last working water-powered corn mill in the region.

A newly installed exhibition tells the story of the mill’s history and the last miller, explaining the milling processes through interactive displays and with volunteers on hand to answer questions.

Artefacts are displayed around the building with an audio-visual tour.

Both traditional waterwheels have been restored to full working order, powered by water from Whillan Beck as it cascades down from the Scafells.

There is also a new hydroelectricity generation plant, in the form of a third waterwheel drawing power from the beck.

The modern waterwheel, added in 2017 by Eskdale Mill & Heritage Trust, is made of steel and set back from the mill itself. It has been designed to complement and work alongside Eskdale Mill, generating income by supplying electricity to the national grid as well as powering the mill cottage.

There is a cluster of other Grade II-listed structures around the mill, including the stables and stone packhorse bridge and the 18th-century miller’s cottage, which has been lovingly restored and is now the mill manager’s house.

Kate Hughes, mill manager, said: "We are delighted to be welcoming visitors to the newly augmented spaces and ahead of schedule.

"More than just an historic museum it offers a sensory experience from the steady motion of the waterwheels, the rhythmic clattering of the internal milling machinery to the flowing water of the beck and the smell of wild garlic outside.

"We’re proud to be continuing the UNESCO Word Heritage Site story by illustrating how this historic building was once a bustling hive of industry and community focal point."

Eskdale Mill & Heritage Trust chairman Paul Pharaoh said: "The reopening of Eskdale Mill marks an exciting milestone in the project.

"Like many organisations in the heritage sector the Mill relies on our team of dedicated volunteers, without their time, passion and knowledge the mill wouldn’t be where it is today.

"For anyone with an interest in gardening, mechanics and heritage we have volunteer opportunities available.

"It’s a great way to meet people and become part of a community."