Cley towermill


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Norfolk Windmills

c.1890
c.1890

Cley towermill was built c.1819, possibly by William Farthing. The 5 storey mill had a horizontally boarded, octagonal dome shaped cap with a petticoat that was topped with a ball finial. The cap held a gallery and an 8 bladed left handed fan. There were 4 double shuttered sails, the inner pair having 8 bays of 3 shutters and the outer pair having 9 bays of 2 shutters and 1 bay of 3 shutters. A stage was set around the 2nd floor that had two opposite doors. When the mill was built c.1819, the sails were powering 2 pairs of French burr stones, a flour mill and jumper but by 1876 this had been increased to 3 pairs of stones and a smut machine had been added.


The property has two physical dates built in:

1. On the outside of one of the flint buildings, pieces of red tile have been laid into a cement backing above one of the windows and form the number 1713.

2. The entrance hall that was added to the south of the tower when the mill was converted, has a piece of old timber built into the wall about three feet above the ground that has the date 1713 carved into it.

Neither date has any bearing on the date the mill was built and both have only been in situ since around the time the mill was converted to residential use in 1921. Colonel Blount was of the opinion that his grandmother had the dates inscribed as a representation of the earliest date shown on the deeds for the property.


Mill working c.1910
Mill working c.1910

The terrace of cottages in front of the mill in the above photograph were converted from old warehouses between 1906 and 1910 and were named Beau Rivage. Nos. 1, 2 and 3 are shown in the photo.


Capital Windmill
To be Sold & Entered upon Immediately
All that capital New erected TOWER WINDMILL with Fan tail, two pair of French Stones, flour mill & jumper, all in the most complete repair & situate at Cley next the Sea in Norfolk, adjoining the Quay. A very extensive business is capable of being carried on here at a comparatively trifling expense, as the flour may be sent out to sea without any land carriage.
For price & further particulars apply to Mr. William Farthing or to Mr. John Farthing at Cley or to Messrs. Withers, Holt.

Norfolk Chronicle - 26th June & 3rd July 1819

When William Farthing died, his widow Dorothy carried on the business and the mill was put up for sale in 1876 when she died. At that time the mill was copyhold of the Manor of Cley and was in the occupation of Stephen Barnabas Burroughs.


Desirable Mercantile Situation for Merchants, Millers etc.
To be Sold
A Most desirable ESTATE situate at Cley next the Sea in the county of Norfolk comprising a capital messuage with offices, granaries (capable of containing 400 quarters of corn), three spacious coal-houses, two coal yards, well enclosed stables, straw house & every other requisite outbuilding.
Also a capital TOWER WIND CORN MILL recently erected & situate & standing upon the Quay at Cley next the Sea aforesaid at which there is an ample depth of water for loading & unloading Grain etc. The above Estate from its contiguity to the harbours of Blakeney & Cley is admirably adapted for carrying on an extensive business in the Corn Coal & Flour trades & is well worthy the attention of any person desirable of embarking in any of the above trades.
Apply to Mr. William Farthing, Cley or to Messrs. Withers, Solrs. Holt.

Norfolk Chronicle - 8th & 15th July 1820

 

c.1905
Postcard with hand written date 17th August 1905

Tithe map 1841
Tithe map 1841 - as redrawn by Harry Apling


Tithe Award 1841
Map 1841
Owner: John Farthing
Occupier: John Lee

No. 443
No. 445
No. 447

Granary, Coal House etc.
Wind Mill, Yard etc.
Stable & Cart Shed

 

0a. 0r. 14p.
0a. 0r. 20p.
0a. 0r. 2p.
parts of 0a. 3r. 8p.

No tithe


During the first half of the nineteenth century the mill was owned by John Farthing and let to John Lee, a merchant. John Lee, a prominent person, not only rented the mill from Mr. Farthing but also a granary, coal house, stable & cart shed, while from George Legge he rented two malthouses, a coal house and a house.
Windmills of England - R. J. Brown - 1976


George Legge owned Mill Hill where the old postmill had been sited.


To Millers
WANTED, a strong active man to Work a TOWER WINDMILL; a character from last Situation required.
Apply to Mr. L. Randall, Cley or at Norfolk News Office on Saturday November 8th by one o’clock.

Norfolk News - 8th November 1862

Situations Vacant
TO MILLERS
Wanted, a respectable honest man to WORK a WINDMILL. One who is willing to make himself generally useful.
Apply to S. B. Burroughes, Miller, Cley next the Sea, Dereham.

Norfolk News - 25th September 1875


William Leggatt is instructed to Sell by Auction at the George & Dragon Inn, Cley next the Sea, on Friday 17 march 1876 at 5 for 6 o’c
All the following valuable ESTATE, late the property of Mrs. Farthing, deceased.
Excellent TOWER WINDMILL
Substantially built Family RESIDENCE
Small Dwelling House
Three Cottages & Extensive Coal WAREHOUSES & GRANARIES, situate near the Quay at Cley next the Sea.
Further particulars in future papers & of Sydney Cozens-Hardy, Solr., Surrey Street, Norwich or the Auctioneer, Holt.

Norfolk Chronicle - 23rd February 1876

Notice re
Dorothy Farthing, deceased, late of Cley next the Sea, Widow.

Norfolk Chronicle - 26th February 1876

Cley next the Sea
William Leggatt will Sell by Auction at the George & Dragon Inn, Cley next the Sea, on Friday March 17, 1876 at Five for Six o’c the undermentioned ESTATE, late the property of Mrs. Farthing, deceased in five Lots.
Lot 1. All that excellent TOWER WINDMILL with patent sails, driving three pairs of stones, with flour mill, jumper, smut machine etc. together with the granary adjoining, two coal warehouses, cart lodge, gig house & two stables, with hay loft over, now in the occupation of Mr. S.B. Burroughes. An extensive business has been carried on for years on these premises which are well situated on the Quay.
Lots. 2, 3, 4 & 5 …
Possession of all the Lots may be had on Old Michaelmas day next. All the above property is Copyhold of the Manor of Cley next the Sea. Fins arbitrary.
The property may be seen on application to Mr. F. Stangroom, Grocer, Cley next the Sea.
Particulars of Mr. Sydney Cozens-Hardy, Solr., Surrey Street, Norwich & Fakenham & of the Auctioneer, Holt.

Norfolk Chronicle - 4th & 11th March 1876

c.1906
Hand coloured postcard c.1906

Preliminary Announcement
Cley next the Sea, Norfolk
William Leggatt is instructed to sell by Auction at the George & Dragon Inn, Cley next the Sea, on Monday July 5, 1886 at 4 for 5 o’c Valuable FREEHOLD PROPERTIES situate in the High Street & on the Quay, Cley next the Sea & comprising BRICK TOWER WINDMILL, Counting house with Granary over, Coal stores, Stables, Cart Lodges & DWELLING HOUSE in the occupation of Mr. S.B. Burroughes.
Commodious FARM RESIDENCE lately occupied by John Turner, Esq., deceased, with walled-in Garden, Warehouses & necessary Offices, large Warehouse & Granaries at present unoccupied & double Cottage, Outhouses & Yard in the occupation of Harmer & Bishop as yearly tenants.
Apply to the auctioneer or George Wilkinson, Esq. Holt, or Chittock & Woods, 17 Bank Plain, Norwich, Vendors’ Solicitors.

Norfolk Chronicle & Lynn Advertiser- 12th June 1886

Cley next the Sea, Norfolk
Mr. William Leggatt is instructed to offer for Sale by Public Auction at the George & Dragon Inn, Cley next the Sea on Monday July 5, 1886 at 4 for 5 o’c in the afternoon, the following
VALUABLE FREEHOLD PROPERTIES situate at Cley next the sea, in the county of Norfolk, either in One Lot or the following Lots.
Lot 1. A most substantially built BRICK TOWER WINDMILL
With Five Floors & Patent Sails, driving Three Pairs of French Burr Stones & Machinery of the best description.
COUNTING HOUSE, Granary, … COAL STORES etc., also small DWELLING HOUSE … with frontage to the Quay, now in the occupation of Mr. S.B. Burroughes as yearly tenant at the very low annual rent of £50.
An Extensive Business has been carried on for many years upon the above Premises.

Particulars of the Auctioneer, Holt, George Wilkinson, Esq., Solr. Holt & of
Chittock & Woods,
17 Bank Plain, Norwich,
Vendors Solicitors.

Norfolk Chronicle & Lynn Advertiser- 26th June & 3rd July 1886

In 1892 Stephen Barnabas Burroughs also had a baking business in Langham and a coal & corn merchant business in Holt. In 1912, Kelly's directory only lists the Burroughs Brothers as bakers in Cley and Stephen Barnabas Burroughs as agent to Lt. Col. T. F. A. Watson Kennedy J.P. & farmer. However, Sydney Stephen Burroughes was also running a large business from Holt towermill.

 

c.1931
c.1931

When Sarah Maria Wilson bought the mill in 1921 she converted it to a holiday home. The machinery was removed and the sails and cap were fixed. The granary and outhouses were converted into stables and a boathouse.
The brake wheel and crown wheel were cut in half and used as door arches.
Three pairs of right handed 4ft French burr stones were built into the terrace to the north of the mill and another was set in the ground near the gate to the northwest of the property.
A pair of left handed 3ft. Niedermendig, Blue, or Cologne (Cullen or Cullin) stones were also set into the terrace and a nother similar stone was set as a doorstep to a flint outbuilding on the east side of the mill. These stones would have been brought in from the Rhineland in the 1700s. In November 1976, Harry Apling commented that the stones
could very well have come from some earlier nearby Post Mill having anticlockwise sails, but driving the stones off head & tail wheels direct, without a great spur wheel.


Many parts of the mill machinery can be turned to account in fitting up the interior as a dwelling. At Cley Mill, Norfolk, the arches of the doors are made from the brake-wheels & crown-wheels cut in half. These arches look very effective, with their quaint mortice teeth, which have a similarity to the dog-tooth carving in ancient buildings.
Old Watermills & Windmills - R. R. Hopkins - 1930


During the second world war Col. Hubert Blount's aunt, Sister Rachael, lived at the mill and along with fellow nun Sister Catherine, worked within the local community. The Duchess of Bedford often visited the nuns at the mill until she was lost at sea whilst flying her own aircraft.


Marjorie L. Davies sketch - 1948
Marjorie L. Davies sketch - 1948

The windmill at Cley … on the North Norfolk coast has been selected by Norfolk County Planning Committee for the first of a number of windmill restorations it is hoped to make … it has already received a considerable amount of attention from the owner, but urgently needs new sails & other repairs. The cost was put at £1300.
Eastern Evening News - 29th March 1960

During the first half of the nineteenth century the mill (towermill) was owned by John Farthing and let to John Lee, a merchant. John Lee, a prominent person, not only rented the mill from Mr. Farthing but also a granary, coal house, stable & cart shed, while from George Legge he rented two malthouses, a coal house and a house.
Windmills of England - R. J. Brown - 1976


... at some time during the war or possibly in the 1953 floods, my greandmother's records, which she kept in the mill, were lost. She (Mrs. Sarah Maria Wilson) bought Cley Mill in 1921 from Burroughes Flour Mills for £350 & converted it into a dwelling house as a holiday home for our family. The late Mr. Cecil Upcher was architect. It came to me at my grandmother's death in 1934.
Lt. Colonel Hubert Blount, Hammer Hill, Cley - 23rd November 1976


1951
1951

At the time of the great sea flood of 1953, Colonel Blount found the mill standing in 8 to 9 feet of water and the occupants marooned within. The front door had floated off and he dived in to come up at the top of the staircase on the first floor.


SAVILLS COUNTRY HOUSES
NEAR BLAKENEY Offers in excess of £100,000
One of the most famous landmarks on the North Norfolk coast with grounds of approximately
½ acre

8/10 Upper King Street, Norwich, Norfolk.
Eastern Daily Press - 29th May 1982
January 1983 - Mill had not sold and remained in the Blount family


New owner of Cley Mill:-
Charles Blount, Peach House, Gangbridge Lane, St. Mary Bourne, Andover, Hants.
Considering Sale.

Friends of Norfolk Windmills Newsletter - April 1981


CLEY MILL - a familiar North Norfolk landmark - is to be turned into a guesthouse.
Permission for change of use and listed building consent for alterations necessary, was given at a meeting on site yesterday by North Norfolk District Council development committee.
The application was by Mr. C. Blount and as well as turning the mill into a guesthouse he will be turning adjacent outbuildings into three self catering units.
... grade two listed building ...
The application was approved unanimously.

Eastern Daily Press - 22nd April 1983


EDP advert 4th Aug 1983
Eastern Daily Press advert
4th August 1983

Cley next the Sea
New fantail frame and fantail made by John Lawn erected by crane yesterday.
Eastern Daily Press - 6th August 1987


Watercolour by John Watson 1993
Watercolour by John Watson 1993

CLEY WINDMILL
Estimated cost of new sails, gallery & fantail £45,000.
Grants totalling £19,000 from English Heritage & County Council.
S.P.A.B. Mill News Newsletter - 28th July 1986


5th June 2004 5th June 2004
5th June 2004

EDP 19th Dec 2006

Colonel Charles & Jane Blount turned the mill into a guesthouse in 1983 and continued to run it until 2005 when it was taken over by their nephew John Woodhouse and his wife Val. In May 2006 they advertised the mill for sale. Charles Jane Blount's son James, after leaving the armed forces, became known as the singer and songwriter, James Blunt.


I have been investigating the death of John Hillier Blount who died in an air accident in World War 1 in Beverley East York. He is an ancestor of the Blounts who owned the Cley Windmill. This is part of a project to research the 17 airmen who are listed on a plaque in All Saints' Church, Bishop Burton who died in World War1 and were based at the Beverley Aerodrome. I've attached the information we've collected so far and would welcome any additional information.
Bryn Jones - 17th April 2009


John Hillier Blount family history

Rick Wakeman gets married for the fourth time

ROCKER Rick Wakeman has got hitched for a fourth time – to a woman younger than his eldest son.
Yes keyboard star Rick, 62, tied the knot with Rachel Kaufman, 37, in a ceremony at a seaside windmill. A source said Rachel's parents Pat and David were the only guests at the low-key wedding.
A friend of the couple said: “Rachel actually said yes to Rick's proposal a few years ago. This will be a wonderful festive surprise for his fans.”
Rick's agent - and Nookie Bear ventriloquist - Roger de Courcey yesterday confirmed the couple wed on December 14 at the windmill in Cley-next-the-Sea, Norfolk .
He said: “It was a very small wedding and reception, a private affair. Rick thoroughly enjoyed a pleasant day and he is very happy. He did say he wasn't going to marry again but Rachel is a lovely lady and she must have changed his mind.”
Rick has four sons and a daughter by his previous three wives. His eldest, Oliver, is 39, two years older than Rachel.
The happy couple, who live in Norfolk , met in 2006 when freelance writer Rachel put the rock star through a medical to discover what his lifestyle had done to his body.
Rick, who has sold more than 50 million records during his 40-year career, had said: “I was worried about an ageing old rocker like me marrying a lovely young girl like Rachel.
"So I asked her parents' permission before I asked her for her hand in marriage. Thankfully, they said yes."

Louie Smith, Daily Mirror - 30th December 2011


22nd April 2014
22nd April 2014

c.1819: Mill built, possibly by William Farthing

June 1819: Mill advertised for sale

July 1820: Mill advertised for sale

Bryant's map 1826: Windmill

White's 1836: John Lee, corn & coal merchant, miller & maltster

1840-1919: Steven Barnabas Burroughs and Burroughs family

Tithe Award 1841: Owner John Farthing; Occupier John Lee

White's 1845: John Lee, corn & coal merchant, miller & maltster

1846: John Lee, miller

1850: William Edward Powell, miller & merchant

1853: Lawrence Randall, miller

White's 1854: Lawrence Randall, corn miller, coal & cake merchant

1862: Lawrence Randall, miller

White's 1864: Lawrence Randall, miller & coal merchant

Register of Electors 1874: Lawrence Randall -
House, mill & land as occupier. On the Quay

c.1875: Mrs. Dorothy Farthing (widow) died

1875: Stephen Barnabas Burroughs, miller

February 1876: Mill advertised for sale by auction in occupation of S. B. Burroughes, copyhold of the Manor

Kelly's 1879: Stephen Barnabas Burroughs, miller, baker & corn merchant

White's 1883: Stephen Barnabas Burroughs, miller & corn merchant & baker

June 1886: Mill advertised for sale by auction in occupation of S. B. Burroughes, annual tenant at a rent of £50. Freehold

Kelly's 1892: Stephen Barnabas Burroughs, miller (wind), baker & coal & corn merchant; & at Holt & Langham

Kelly's 1896: Stephen Barnabas Burroughs, baker, corn, flour, cake, pollard, coal & manure merchant & wind miller; & at Langham; & farmer at Wiveton Hall Farm

Kelly's 1900: Burroughs Brothers, bakers, corn, flour, cake, pollard, coal & manure merchants & wind millers

Kelly's 1904: Burroughs Brothers, bakers, corn, flour, cake, pollard, coal & manure merchants & wind millers

1908: Burroughs Brothers, millers

1921: Mill bought by Sarah Maria Wilson from Burroughes Flour Mills for £350 and converted to holiday home.

c.1921: Machinery removed; cap and sails fixed

1934: Mill inherited by Col. Hubert Blount (grandson of Sarah Wilson)

31st January 1953: Mill under 8 to 9 feet of water during the great sea flood

1st February 1976: Lt. Col. Hubert Blount died

1960: Sails replaced

1979: Colonel Charles and Jane Blount

May 1982: Mill advertised for sale

21st April 1983: Planning consent granted to turn the mill and complex into a guesthouse & self catering units

EDP 8th January 1987: John Lawn & John Bond take down fan assembly for renovation

5th August 1987: New fantail and frame installed by John Lawn, millwright

1987: Miss Caroline Hederman, property manageress

2004: Mill used for self catering and B&B accommodation

2005: Colonel Charles & Jane Blount retired leaving the mill to be run by nephew John Woodhouse & wife Val

2006: Charlotte Martin property manageress

May 2006: Mill advertised for sale by Strutt & Parker for c.£1,500,000

December 2006: Mill sold to Julian & Carolyn Godlee of Hertfordshire

2007: Mill still to offer self catering & B&B accommodation with the restaurant being opened to non residents

2006: Charlotte Martin property manageress

14th December 2011: Rock star Rick Wakeman, married for the 4th time at the mill



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