Lord Armstrong created many water features throughout Jesmond Dene as part of his landscaping. He added new ponds and built rapids, weirs and waterfalls to bring movement to the river. His biggest project was the creation of this waterfall and the deep gorge you can see downstream. Explosives were used to blast out rock and the stone was used to build up the sides of the waterfall.
There is a sluice gate behind it which could open and close to change the flow of water. Armstrong aimed to sculpt the river, creating dramatic features that looked natural. However if you look closely at the stone below the mill you might spot the joins where the rocks were cemented together. After heavy rains torrents of water rush down the falls filling the valley with sound. Tucked away near the waterfall Armstrong made a grotto from an old quarry. The grotto was designed to give the visitor an experience of underground mystery.