Marlingford Mill
River Yare


Drainage Mills (Windpumps)
Steam Mills


Marlingford watermill machinery and possibly the mill building was refurbished in the 1850s when it was geared to run 5 sets of stones. It was built of rendered brick and weatherboard under a Norfolk pantiled roof. Although it finished grinding corn in 1912, the mill has been well kept. After milling ceased, it ran a turbine and pumped water to the hall via filter beds until the 1920s.

In the 1920s, a turbine and switchgear were installed to provide electricity for the hall and power a pump to push water to storage tanks at the hall via filter beds. The turbine was taken out of service in the 1950s.

Although every care and effort has been made to provide correct information, it is not clear from the available records as to which miller was at which mill in the early years. If any viewer can throw any further light by supplying additional information, it would be gratefully received.
Mill options:
Marlingford watermill | Marlingford Bawburgh Rd. towermill | Marlingford Honingham Rd. towermill

c.1910 still with an internal wheelhouse
c.1910 still with an internal wheelhouse

Mill bypass bridge after the 1912 flood
Mill bypass bridge after the 1912 flood

In contrast to the three pictures above, the three photos below clearly shows that the right hand section of the lower building covering the wheelhouse has been removed and the roof has gained its familiar wooden spandrel like supports. This appears to have occurred at some time between 1912 and 1925 could possibly have been necessary in order to remove the wheel or axle.

September 1952
September 1952

1939 Wheelhouse without roof c.1925
Wheelhouse without roof c.1925

Norwich, Sept. 19, 1783.
Corn and Coal Trade.

John CLOVER, Corn Buyer and Coal-Dealer, having taken the Granaries and Coal Bynns late Mr Theophilus EDWARD's, Merchant, deceased, situated in Wymondham, in Norfolk, solicits the Continuance of the Favours of Mr EDWARD's Friends and Customers, and also of the Farmers in general.
Constant Attendance will be given at the underneath mentioned Places for the buying of Corn, and a full Market Price may be depended on for all Sorts of Grain, according to Quality and well Dressing.
Corn Bought,
At Marlingford Mills every Day (Sundays excepted). -- The White Hart, Wymondham, on Fridays. Corn bought in the City of Norwich.
At the Hand, in St Benedict's, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday Mornings till Eleven o'Clock. -- The Bear, in the Market-place, from Eleven till Two. -- The White Swan, St Peter's, from Two till Evening.
Places of Delivery for Corn.
St George's, St Michael Coslany, and King street, Norwich, -- At Wymondham and at Marlingford Mills (for wheat only).
Norfolk Chronicle – 20th September 1783

Wheelhouse 17th May 2003
Wheelhouse 17th May 2003

John Clover ... assignment ...
N.B. The Business of Marlingford Mill is continued as formerly for supplying of the Customers with Meal & Flour.
Norfolk Chronicle - 11th November 1775

For the Remainder of the Term, of which 12 years are unexpired.
For further Particulars apply to Mr. Joseph Clover or Mr. John Wright, Norwich
N.B. A new-built TOWER WINDMILL to be SOLD with the above if desired.
Norfolk Chronicle - 28th May & 4th, 11th, 18th & 25th June 1785


March 1968 17th April 1977
March 1968
17th April 1977

Turbine February 1983 Diesel engine and gearing February 1985
Turbine February 1983
Diesel engine and gearing February 1985

To be SOLD
The Remainder of a LEASE of which 13 years were unexpired at Michaelmas last of a WATER MILL at Marlingford...
Also a very large new-erected WIND
_MILL; which Mill with such Things belonging to the Water Mill as are not the Property of the Landlord to be taken by the Purchaser of the Lease at a fair Valuation. The great Improvements made in the Mills by the late Tenant, Mr. John CLOVER, deceased, have rendered them capable of manufacturing from 12 to 14 Lasts of Wheat per week.
For further Particulars apply to Mr. Joseph CLOVER or Mr. John WRIGHT, Norwich.
Norfolk Chronicle - 13th & 20th November 1784

Mill dam and mill in 1970 Mill dam 17th May 2003
Mill dam and mill in 1970
Mill dam and mill - 17th May 2003

Mill dam 4th February 2004
Mill dam 4th February 2004

In the 1780s Parson James Woodforde of Weston Longville often sold grain from his glebeland to local millers Ben Leggett, 'my farming man' would be despatched to take the grain by horse and cart, which would often be a full day's work as can be seen from the following excerpts from Parson Woodforde's famous diary:

May 20th 1786
Ben sold my Wheat to the Marlingford Miller this Morning for 19 shillings per Coomb, to be carried thither next Week - My Miller, Forster would not give me more than 18 per Coomb tho’ it was offered him first & which I would not take

Oct 29th 1787
Sent Ben this Morning with 10. Coomb of Wheat to Marlingford, which he sold for me last Saturday at 18s/9d per Coomb

Nov 3rd 1787
Sent Ben very early this Morning to Norwich with 10 Coomb of Barley full measure, that is 10 Coomb and 2 Bushels; he is to sell it for me Ben returned after 5 this Aft: with half a Chldrn of Coal - He sold my Barley to Mr Bloome who has taken the business late Mr Lock’s - he offered 10s/0d per Coomb, but Ben would not take that, but however left it with him and therefore I shall expect half guineas for the same - He received for me for the Wheat last Week from the Marlingford Miller at 18s/9d - 9 : 7 : 6 which he paid to me on his return

17th April 1977 17th May 2003
17th April 1977
17th May 2003

A most valuable and desirable RESIDENCE in NORFOLK abounding in game, and well calculated for a Gentleman wishing for business
Persuant to the directions of the Will of the late REV. THOMAS GREENE, towards the latter end of July or the beginning of August, in five lots

Lot 2.
A most valuable Watermill, with a good house, other buildings, and about 67 acres of excellent arable and meadow land, in Marlingford.
Norfolk Cronicle - 26th June 1819

To Millers,
To be let for a term of years With immediate possession The MARLINGFORD MILLS situate on a fine stream of water in an excellent wheat country, driving 5 pairs of stones. The machinery, which is nearly new, is in first rate condition. The above Mills are distant seven miles from Norwich and five miles from Wymondham Station of the Eastern Counties Railway.

Apply to T. L. EWEN, Dedham, Essex or William BARNARD, Bracon Ash, near Norwich.
Norfolk Chronicle - 27th September 1856

February 1983 17th May 2003
February 1983
17th May 2003

George Coote, Marlingford, Miller

Norfolk Chronicle - 4th November 1882

I am a descendant of the Thompson family who lived at Marlingford in the late 1800s / early 1900s.
I have always understood that my mother was born in a cottage in the grounds. Her father was Clifford Thompson, her mother Ethel née Dann. She was a member of another prominent family in the Wramplingham/Barford area.
Anne Brittan née Wells, New Zealand - 23rd February 2008

2nd May 2007
2nd May 2007

28th February 2008
28th February 2008

16th November 2008 16th November 2008
16th November 2008
16th November 2008

My name is David Roper (73 years of age) and I live south of Adelaide - South Australia.
My great-grandfather William Henry Roper (travelling alone), arrived in South Australia as a fifteen year old lad on 5th January 1850, having been born at Hoxne in Norfolk from parents who had been flour millers at Marlingford until their move to Greenwich - London. His father named John was the son of Thomas Press Roper whose wife was Sarah nee Bradfield.
My (Gt Gt Gt Grandfather) Thomas Press Roper died in 1843, and from the article on the Bawburgh_Road_Towermill I perused on the internet, it occurred to me that the Thomas Roper - Miller in that article could possibly be one in the same person as my relelation?   
My great grandfather William Henry bought and operated a (steam then oil engine) flour mill at Second Valley south of Adelaide from 1877, where it still stands to this day as a restaurant after being in the Roper family for 107 years at which time it passed to new owners in 1984.   
I have done authenticated research on 'my' Roper family from father to son from 1584.       Thomas Press and his wife Sarah had two sons, John - my Gt Gt Grand father and George, and three daughters - Sarah, Mary and Ann.   
George was born 18.9.1793 at Marlingford, (was he George Roper - Miller 1836?) and John born 1.3.1786 at Marlingford removed to Greenwich and worked as a clerk for Mumfords at their flour mill in that locality until his eyesight deteriorated, then he worked for a Mr. Whitfield in the coal trade. With the advent of the 'industrial revolution' and possibly his fathers milling business being declared insolvent (presuming Thomas Roper was his father) then I can fully understand why he should seek a life elsewhere.
David F. Roper, Adelaide, Australia - 5th August 2013

O. S. Map 1881

O. S. Map 1881
Courtesy of NLS map images

O.S. Map 2005
O.S. Map 2005
Image reproduced under licence from Ordnance Survey

Census 1881: David Sayer, butcher

1783: John Clover, miller

1784: John Clover died

November 1784: Mill lease advertised for sale along with lease of Bawburgh Rd windmill

June 1785: Mill lease advertised for sale along with lease of Bawburgh Rd windmill

1789: Thomas Roper, miller, took on Thomas Eldred as an apprentice

Faden's map 1797: Mill

June 1819: Mill advertised for sale by auction as one of 5 lots after the death of Revd. Thomas Greene

White's 1836: George Roper, miller - also at Honingham Rd windmill

1839: George Roper, miller

White's 1845: William Colman, miller - also at Honingham Rd windmill

c.1850: Mill refurbished

Census 1851: Thomas W. Spice (62) b.Norwich, millers clerk
Maria Spice (56) b.Norwich
Sarah Spice (30) b.Norwich
Ebenezer Spice (22) b.Horstead, journeyman miller
Ann Swann (85) b.Halesworth, Suffolk, annuitant (mother-in-law)
Address: Mill dwelling house

White's 1854: Samuel C. Colman & Co., corn millers - also at Honingham Rd windmill

Census 1861: David Sayer, master miller aged 38 employing woman and 2 boys

White's 1864: John Dunham Gowing, corn miller - also at Honingham Rd windmill

Post Office Directory 1875: George Coote, miller - also at Hardingham

Kelly's 1879: George Coote, miller,
The Mill - also at Honingham Rd windmill

Census 1881: James William Goldsmith (39) b.Ixworth , Suffollk, journeyman miller
Jane Goldsmith (38) b.Forncett
Hedley James Goldsmith (9) b.Frinningham, Suffolk, scholar
William John Goldsmith (8) b.Frinningham, Suffolk, scholar

1882: George Coote, insolvent

White's 1883: George Coote, miller & corn merchant, Marlingford mills - also at Honingham Rd windmill

White's 1890: George William Thompson, C.C., miller and corn merchant, and 128 Corn hall, Norwich

Kelly's 1896: George William Thompson, miller (water & steam) The Mill

Kelly's 1896: George William Thompson, miller (water & steam) The Mill

Kelly's 1900: George William Thompson, miller (water & steam) The Mill

Kelly's 1904: George William Thompson, miller (water & steam) The Mill

Kelly's 1908: George William Thompson, miller (water & steam) The Mill

Kelly's 1912: George William Thompson, miller (water & steam) Marlingford Roller mills

Kelly's 1916: George William Thompson (exors. of), millers (water & steam) Marlingford Roller mills

1916: Mill ceased production

Kelly's 1922: William John Dack, Mill house

c.1922: Mill turbine used to generate electricity and pump water for the hall

c.1952: Mill ceased all working

If you have any memories, anecdotes or photos please let us know and we may be able to use them to update the site. By all means telephone 01263 713658 or

Nat Grid Ref TG1287 0834
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Copyright © Jonathan Neville 2003