Stiffkey Mill
River Stiffkey

Contact

Drainage Windpumps
Steam Mills

12th October 2003
12th October 2003

Stiffkey was originally pronounced Stewkey and still is by some locals. A watermill was working in Stiffkey in the 1200s and was probably rebuilt several times until the mill finally ceased working in the 1800s. The mill was three storeys high but its construction is so far unknown, although it was probably made of brick and weatherboard. It was quite a small mill and only ran two pairs of stones.


In the first volume of the Papers of Nathaniel Bacon he discusses in a letter to his father the possibility of building a mill with some of the money from the sale of property. He bemoans the fact that the other towns on the river Stiffkey all have watermills but Stiffkey does not. By 1579 there are estate books and accounts showing that Stiffkey by then had it's own mill.


The 3 arch bridge once adjoining the mill 12th October 2003
The 3 arch bridge once adjoining the mill 12th October 2003

The watermill was worked in conjunction with the towermill at the top of the hill and after Felix Frankling died in 1857 both mills were worked by Samuel Frankling as tenant to Felix Frankling's trustees, who charged Samuel a rent of £80 per annum. Samuel Frankling became insolvent and eventually made a Deed of Assignment to his creditors and paid a first dividend in March 1865.

Both the watermill and the windmill were advertised for sale on several occasions and in June 1865, were eventually offered for sale without reserve. However, as they still remained unsold, Charles Daniel Frankling
decided to become an annual tenant. He continued ran the business from 1872 until 1881, during which time the watermill ceased operation.


The watermill had ceased operation by 1881 and was put up for auction described as a three storey warehouse.


Remains of brickwork 12th October 2003
Remains of brickwork 12th October 2003

A few years ago an old Terrier of Stiffkey came into my possession on the purchase of a collection of early Norfolk charters. It dates from the reign of Edward the First, 1272-1307 ...
tempe E pm f Henr terij
(Henry reigned 1216-1272)
Wyllm Turtevyll and Wyllm Hevynhgm heldeth in the towne of Styfkey ...
And j watermyll and Anoder Wyndemyll
Norfolk Archaeology, H. L. Bradfer-Lawrence - 1928

Valuable Freehold Estates.
To be sold by Public Auction by Mr. HOUGHTON at the Townshend Arms Inn, Stiffkey on Wednesday 25 November at 3 o'clock.
By order otf the Trustees for Sale under the Will of the late Mr. Felix Frankling, deceased.
Lot 1.
All that brick built TOWER_WINDMILL with patent sails driving two pairs of stones and Flour Mill with tackle and machinery complete.
Also Cottages...
Coal-House and Land...
Lot 2.
All that WATER CORN-MILL with two pairs of stones, flour mill, tackle and machinery complete.
Also Dwelling House, Chapel etc.
The above described property is in excellent repair.
Apply to Mr. Loynes, Solicitor or the Auctioneer, both of Wells.

Norfolk Chronicle - 28th October & Norfolk News - 31st October, 7th, 14th & 21st November 1857


STIFFKEY, Norfolk
Messrs. Spelman have received instructions from the Executors of the late Mr. Felix Frankling to Sell by Auction on Friday September 18, 1863 at 5 for 6 o'c in the Evening at the Feathers Inn, Holt, in three lots, the following FREEHOLD PROPERTY consisting of the Old Established Water and Wind CORNMILLS, Bake office and DWELLING HOUSE, Garden and Premises in the occupation of Mr. Samuel Frankling. Also several COTTAGES and Gardens all situate at Stiffkey, Norfolk.
Particulars in future papers and may be had of Mr. Loynes, Solicitor, Wells and of the Auctioneers at Norwich and Yarmouth.

Norfolk News - 29th August 1863


Water and Wind Corn Mills, Bake office, Dwelling house, Garden and Premises, Cottages and Garden. (To be sold by Spelmans)
On Friday September 18, 1863 at 5 for 6 o'c at the Feathers Inn, Holt. Pursuant to the instructions of the Executors of the late Felix Frankling
Lot 1. The old established WIND & WATER CORN MILLS with Bake office and Dwelling house attached, Stables, Cart Lodge and Premises situate at Stiffkey, Norfolk in the occupation of Mr. Samuel Frankling.
Particulars of Mr. Loynes, Solr. Wells, Norfolk or of the Auctioneers, Norwich and Yarmouth.

Norfolk Chronicle & Norfolk News - 5th & 12th September 1863


To Millers and others
Freehold Well Established Premises
STIFFKEY, Norfolk
For Sale by Private Contract (with Possession) the excellent WATER CORN MILL and Brick Tower_WINDMILL, Bake office, Dwelling house, Stabling, Lodges and convenient Outbuildings at Stiffkey, Norfolk.
These Premises are Freehold, situate in a fine Corn District and within four miles from the Port of Wells and the Railway Station.
A Prosperous Business has been carried on there for upwards of fifty years and the Business is capable of great extension by the addition of Steam Power.
To view the Premises apply to the tenant, Mr. Samuel Frankling.
For further particulars and to treat for the purchase, apply to Mr. Knights, Earl Derby, Forest Gate, Stratford, or to Messrs. Furley, Callaway & Furley, Solicitors, Canterbury.

Norfolk News - 21st & 28th January & 2nd February 1865


Absolute Sale.
Old-established Water and Wind Corn Mills and other premises STIFFKEY near Wells
Messrs. Spelman have received instructions to Sell by Auction without reserve on Tuesday June 20 at 3 for 4 o'c at the Crown Inn, Wells the following Property
The old-established WATER & WIND CORN MILLS situate at Stiffkey, Norfolk in the occupation of Mr. Samuel Frankling at the annual rent of £80.
The Water Mill has three storeys and two pair of Stones.
The Wind_Mill is substantially built, winds herself, has four Patent Sails and drives two pairs of Stones.
There are an excellent Dwelling House, Cottage, Baking Office with Flour Chamber over, Stables, Waggon Lodge, a Building now used as a Chapel, numerous requisite Premises and a small Pightle of Land next the Mill.
The above very desirable Property presents an excellent opportunity for a Miller or Merchant requiring business premises. The Mills are situate in a fine corn district and within 4 miles from the Port of Wells and Railway Station. The Tower_Mill stands well for wind; an excellent trade has been carried on for the past 50 years and upwards upon this Property and it is capable of having the trade extended by applying steam power.
The Estate is Freehold and Possession will be given, if required, on completion of the purchase.
Apply to Messrs. Furley, Callaway & Furley, Solrs. Canterbury, and of the Auctioneers, Norwich and Yarmouth.
Norfolk Chronicle & Norfolk News - 3rd, 10th & 17th June 1865


STIFFKEY
Mills to be Sold or Let
The old-established Water and Wind Corn Mills at Stiffkey, Norfolk, now or late in the occupation of Mr. Frankling.
Apply Mesrs. Spelman, Norwich.
Norfolk Chronicle 11th November & Norfolk News - 11th & 18th November 1865


STIFFKEY near Wells, Norfolk
To be Sold by Auction by Mr. ROBERT SPICER
At the Lion Hotel, Fakenham, on Thursday 9 June, 1881 at 3 for 4 o'clock in the afternoon, a very desirable FREEHOLD ESTATE. In the occupation of Mr. Charles Franklyn
Comprising well erected Windmill, Bake Office with Flour Chamber over, Stable and Harness House with Loft over Waggon Lodge, Wood house and Yard, Piggeries and other premises.
DWELLING HOUSE…
COTTAGE…
WAREHOUSE of three storeys formerly used as a Water Mill. Adjoining the bake house and fronting the street is a Building now used as a Chapel, but capable of being converted into a cottage. At a short distance from the home premises is the substantially built brick TOWER_WIND MILL (five storeys) driving two pairs of 4 ft. stones, flour mill, patent sails, winds herself, with all her machinery and going gears. A small PIGHTLE OF LAND next the mill and a Stone and tiled SHED. The above valuable Freehold Property presents an excellent opportunity for a miller or merchant requiring business premises. The Tower_
Mill which is situate in a fine corn district and within 4 miles of the port and railway station of Wells, stands well for wind. An excellent trade has been carried on for the past 60 years and upwards upon this property and it is capable of having the trade extended by applying steam power.
Possession can be had on the 6th July next.
Apply to the Auctioneer, Wells or to
Edward B. Loynes, Solicitor,
Wells, Norfolk.

Lynn Advertiser - 28th May 1881


Mill site 12th October 2003
Mill site 12th October 2003

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

White's 1864: James Frankling, baker & confectioner

Kelly's 1879: James Frankling, Red Lion, & baker

White's 1883: James Frankling, baker & victualler, Red Lion

White's 1890: James Frankling, baker & victualler, Red Lion

Kelly's 1892: James Frankling, Red Lion P. H. & baker

Kelly's 1896: James Frankling, Red Lion P. H. & baker

Kelly's 1900: James Frankling, Red Lion P. H. & baker


c.1216 - 1272: Windmill & watermill

c.1578: Nathaniel Bacon

White's 1836: Felix & James Frankling, millers

Tithe award 1841: Felix Frankling. also Stiffkey towermill

White's 1845: Felix & James Frankling, millers, also Stiffkey towermill

c.July 1857: Felix Frankling died leaving the windmill and watermill to be sold by his trustees

Norwich Index of Wills 1857: Felix Frankling, miller & baker

25th November 1857: Mill & windmill for sale by auction (not sold)

1863: Samuel Frankling, miller & at windmill

August 1863: Mill & windmill advertised for sale by auction

White's 1864: Samuel Frankling, miller & baker

January 1865: Mill & windmill advertised for sale by private contract

March 1865: First Dividend declared on estate of Samuel Frankling, miller, baker & farmer, bankrupt

June 1865: Mill & windmill advertised for sale by auction

1865: Samuel Frankling, tenant to trustees of Felix Frankling. Annual rent £80.00

November 1865: Mill & windmill advertised for sale or let

June 1865: Mill for sale by auction, without reserve (not sold).

1872 - 1881: Charles Daniel Frankling, yearly tenant. Watermill ceased work during this period

9th June 1881: Mill for sale by auction, described as a three storey warehouse


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 TF97004305 approx
Top of Page
Copyright © Jonathan Neville 2003