A significant change of ownership came in 1782 when Thomas Davison Bland, of Kippax, sold the mills on both sides of the river to the Aire & Calder Navigation company for £7,000.

The Aire & Calder Navigation  and its successors – the British Waterways Board and Canal & River Trust – remained the owners until 2013.   By the time of the 1782 sale, the mills were more substantial structures, having been rebuilt in stone in 1746–7.   There were still two corn mills within one building on the Queen’s Mill site, each with its own waterwheel, but by 1816 one of these mills was leased to David Dunderdale, to grind flint for his Castleford Pottery.

A plan dated 1822 shows the main body of the mill taking its present shape: brickwork from this period, in the wall facing the river, has survived subsequent rebuildings, along with some of the mid-eighteenth century stonework.   There were still two wheels, one driving stones to grind grain, the other to grind bone (again for the pottery industry).   Around this time, the Heptinstall family took on the lease and retained it until 1884.   Among the works they undertook were extensions at the east end of the mill for warehousing, including the building now known as the screening room, which was built in 1866.   The two waterwheels continued in operation and, externally, the buildings were starting to appear largely as they do today.

The successors to the Heptinstalls were Harry Goodall & Co, who had big ideas for the mill.   In 1884–85, the traditional water-driven millstones were replaced by steel rollers, powered by steam, to crush the grain and the twin waterwheels were decommissioned.   However, rather than abandoning water power, instead they replaced the two wheels with one huge one, 21ft in diameter and 14ft wide, and connected it to a dynamo to generate electricity: thus, in October 1885, the mill became the first building in Castleford with electric light and power.   An extra warehouse was added, this being the building now known as the island, nearest the river footbridge.   In December 1897 a fire gutted the interior of the mill and caused £30,000 of damage.  It is thought the mill remained out of action through the first two decades of the 20th century.