Northwold Mill
River Wissey



c.1900
c.1900

Photograph from the Didlington Estate sale catalogue 1910
Photograph from the Didlington Estate sale catalogue 1910
Photo by kind permission of Paddy Apling
http://apling.freeservers.com/Didlington/NorthwoldMill.htm


Northwold Mill was situated on the edge of the Didlington Estate. It was built of white brick and weatherboard with a slate roof. It was almost Georgian in its solid rectangular style.

The lucam had no support from underneath, which was quite unusual for a Norfolk mill.

It was presumably demolished some time after Claude Messent's drawing in 1938.


c.1920 with many broken windows 6th March 2004
c.1920 with many broken windows
6th March 2004

Hardingham_Mill lately rebuilt for Messrs. Taylor & Tingay, the new water wheel and important wheel work at Northwold Mill for Messrs. Cokers whereby three bushels of corn can be ground where one was ground before...
Excerpt from letter from William Thorold to Roger Micklefield - 1836


BUY YOUR FLOUR, BARLEY MEAL, and SPLIT BEANS, direct from JOHN HARROD'S WATER MILL, NORTHWOLD, where you will get the HIGHEST QUALITY at the LOWEST PRICE.
Norwich Mercury - 8th March 1873


Pippa Miller's copy of Claude Messent's 1938 original
Pippa Miller's copy of Claude Messent's 1938 original

NORTHWOLD WATER MILL, in the Parish of Northwold. Held by Messrs. D. & M. OFFLEY, under Agreement, dated 17th February, 1904, on a Yearly Michaelmas Tenancy, subject to twelve months' notice. A capital brick and timber and slated Corn Mill in good working order.

NORTHWOLD MILL FARM, in the Parishes of Northwold, Didlington, and Cranwich. Held by Messrs. D. & M. OFFLEY, under Agreement, dated 17th Feb., 1904, as a Yearly Tenant, subject to twelve months' notice. A capital flint and slated Farm-house, with Five Bed Rooms, Two Sitting Rooms, Kitchen and Offices. Excellent Buildings, brick, thatched and tiled, 3-bay Cart Shed, Three-Stall Stable, Two Chaff-houses, Three Loose Boxes, Gig-house, Piggeries, Implement-house, Cattle and Horse Yards with hovels, Barn with Granary, Four Boxes, Root Store.

[Mill & Farm together] Acreage 335.095; Rent £150.0.0

Extract from the Particulars of Sale of Didlington Estate, 1910


June 1968
June 1968

Bypass June 1968 Headrace June 1968
Bypass June 1968
Headrace June 1968

Mill dam February 1983 Tailrace February 1983
Mill dam February 1983
Tailrace February 1983

Mill dam 6th March 2004 Tailrace 6th march 2004
Mill dam 6th March 2004
Tailrace 6th march 2004

Headrace 6th March 2004 Wheelpit 6th march 2004
Headrace 6th March 2004
Wheelpit 6th march 2004

As a boy I lived at Methwold. I am certain Northwold Mill was intact 1944/45.It was certainly there July 1945 because I cut my foot swimming in the pool and Mr. Bateman took me by car to the doctor in Northwold.  I used to go swimming and fishing and remember exploring inside. It was non operative then. I vaguely remember climbing in from the wheel somehow.  All else that I remember was netting - perhaps eel nets - spread about. Also climbing up to different floors. I don't remember machinery. When swimming in the pool we boys were joined sometimes by American airmen, I believe from Bodney.
Basil Kybird - 5th March 2007

I guess - admittedly without any documentary evidence - that William Coker may have been introduced to milling at Shipdham in the 1820s; but I can tell you that his father and he co-signed a 21-year lease of Northwold Mill on 13 Dec 1832 (Norfolk Records Office, MC84/13, 523X8).  One way or another, I believe that Fuller Snr. bought the freehold of Northwold Mill Farm for William's occupation, possibly from The Hon. Henry William Wilson of Didlington Hall.  (One of Fuller Snr's grandsons born in 1833 was christened William Wilson Coker - he eventually qualified as both a surgeon and a physician and practised in Chicago IL until his death in 1909 - and I cannot find any other reason where the 'Wilson' might have come from, except as a form of tribute.)
You may be interested to know that the 1851 Census (TNA, Northwold, Norfolk, HO 107/774/11/7, p.6) shows that William employed a 20-year-old called John Harrod as a miller ... John appears to have taken over the lease of the mill in about 1868, and is certainly mentioned as the miller in Northwold in Kelly's Directory of 1883 (viz. EC 'Paddy' Apling's excellent website).
The evidence suggests to me that William did not renew his lease in 1853, but concentrated on his farming instead until his relatively early death in 1860.
Anthony Coker - 19th July 2017

O. S. Map 1883

O. S. Map 1883
Courtesy of NLS map images


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

Index of Wills (Northwold) 1621: Henry Brewett

Index of Wills (Northwold) 1750: Jonas Gill

Faden's map 1797: Northwold Water Mill

13th December 1832: Fuller Coker and son William co-signed a 21 year lease for the mill

1836: Important wheel work carried out by William Thorold, millwright

White's 1836: William Coker, corn miller

White's 1845:
William Coker, corn miller

Census 1851: William Coker miller; John Harrod (20) employee miller

1860: William Coker died

White's 1864: John Harrod, corn miller

1873: John Harrod, miller

Kelly's 1879: John Harrod, miller & farmer, Water mill

White's 1883: John Harrod, corn miller & farmer

Kelly's 1892: Daniel & Michael Offley

1900: Estate and mill sold

Kelly's 1912: Daniel & Michael Offley

Kelly's 1922: James & Thomas Offley

Kelly's 1925: James & Thomas Offley

Kelly's 1929: Sidney Frank Lee Warner

Kelly's 1937: Sidney Frank Lee Warner

1944: Mill building still intact, although possibly without machinery

2004: Mill site & farm for sale


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 TL77159626
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Copyright © Jonathan Neville 2004

 

Bridget Neville Julia Stevens