ralphrobertson wrote:Actually the mockup is based on 2 mills in the Manchester area, one of which has equal sized windows across all 6 floors and the other has the top 2 floors with lower windows.
Ah - Manchester itself was very much a special case - built early, cramped sites etc!
ralphrobertson wrote:One of the constraints we are working too is that the mill needs to cover the touch screen we are using to control the layout and ...
Oh course, the biggest mill in the world (Dunlop No 2 Ring Mill) was only a step away in Castleton, but again, not really typical. Equally, many of the "listed" mills (which tend to be more complete) survive because they were unusual in some way.
One practical suggestion I would make is to have a trip to the Oldham Local Studies Centre where they have the entire collection of drawings from Joseph Stott and Son who's mills were pretty handsome things. Their mill for the Manor Spinning Company in Chadderton is listed and survives pretty complete including a full-height chimney albeit not with its original top. A search of Google Images for "Manor Mill Chadderton" will show you what it looks like and it has the advantage of having the engine room right at the end of the long wall.
The problem of having the mill "end-on" to the viewer is that the width of the mill (length as you have it laid out) is limited to about 135 - 154ft (the length of the mules), but if you need to have it longer than that, you could have the length of the mill to the viewer but using a vertical engine to drive it - again at the end of the long wall. The Regent Mill in Failsworth (by the same architect) is of this type and was a Ring Mill so is less "wide" (depth as you have it laid out).
I know that a (well-known) Society Member did a lot of research into this for his own layout and has done a fair few drawings - I suspect he is well known to the group, but ask for his name in a PM if you like rather than me name him without his permission.
Off course, if you are going to have such a prominent engine room, you will need an engine to go in it - here is one I have been working on:-
It is a 3D computer model, so you should be able to send it to Modellu and an engine comes back!
Hope you don't mind me commenting - but I would hate the group to fall into the same trap as "Inkerman Street" which was backed by "Moss Hey New Mill - a former Cotton Mill". Er, never in the memory of man was that ever a cotton mill
Good luck for a fantastic project!