Norfolk Mills


Drainage Windpumps
Steam Mills


Letheringsett Mill
Letheringsett Mill - Norfolk's last working mill

If you have any mill related publications
that you would like posted on this page
free of charge
by all means telephone
07836 675369

Bessingham: The Story of a Norfolk Estate, 1766-1970
This new book explores the personal role of the Spurrell family in running the Bessingham estate.  The Spurrells were related by marriage to the Joys, who owned Roughton Mill in the 18th and 19th centuries.  When the last Joy died in the 1860s the mill passed to Daniel Spurrell, who later sold it to Benjamin Bond Cabbell of Cromer Hall.  Letters and other family papers bring alive some of the characters associated with Roughton Mill.  The book also focuses on the men, women and children who lived in Bessingham and is the result of many years of painstaking research by Jonathan Spurrell, using family papers, farm records, maps and interviews with recent residents.


The Book is now in bookshops in Norwich and North Norfolk
and also available online -
or 'Bessingham History Project' on Facebook 


Norfolk Parish Treasures
Mid Norfolk & The Broads
Peter Tolhurst


Hardback Price: £25.00
Softback Price: £20.00

384 page book with 850 colour photos and
165 black & white illustrations

There are medieval churches and country houses in abundance but
Norfolk Parish Treasures is a more wide ranging celebration of
creative endeavour and local identity. The author speculates on the
origin of place names, folk tales and ancient earthworks; he
explores rare wildlife sites, ruined churches and deserted villages,
salutes the artistic achievements of Cotman and John Piper, the
inspiration of St Benet’s Abbey for Norwich School artists and the
importance of place for Virginia Woolf at Blo’ Norton Hall and in
the novels of LP Hartley.
But what is a Parish Treasure? Few could argue with Blickling
Hall or Hickling Broad but what of those local features - the VR post
box and milestone, the ancient oak and green lane? These fragile
remnants of a lost world are an equally important part of our
heritage. Norfolk Parish Treasures is also a glorious salvage
operation; a collection of the most beautiful artefacts - Iron Age
chariot pieces, Roman drinking cups and Saxon brooches - from our
distant past.
Following the success of North and West Norfolk (2014) and
Breckland and South Norfolk (2015), Mid Norfolk and The Broads is
the last in the Parish Treasures series. Ambitious in scope,
sumptuously illustrated and packed with fascinating information this
cabinet of curiosities is a celebration of the county’s enduring
attraction ready to take its place alongside the Norfolk Shell Guide
and Pevsner’s Norfolk.

Biography of Sir Berney Brograve who built Brograve Mill

Sir Berney Brograve

Price: £5.58 from Amazon

In the dark days of the 18th century Sir Berney Brograve had a lot to lose. His fortune. Seventeen children. Two wives. Peace of mind.

Embroiled in a battle of wits he terrorised the locals. But he felt vulnerable in his 16th century manor house perched precariously on the edge of the crumbling East Anglian coast.

He didn't sleep well. Smugglers fired cannonballs at his house at night. The French threatened to invade. Even Mother Nature tormented him. Year after year the North Sea eroded his sanity with each inundation of his land, leaving disease and death in its wake.

Add squandered inheritance, suicide and a scandalous divorce, eventually the house of Brograve came crashing down.

This is the real story behind the legend of the notorious ghost of Waxham.

Corn Milling

Edited by Dr. Heather Edwards
for The Parson Woodforde Society  

A new and improved edition of this part of the diary of the Revd James Woodforde is now available. The diaries of James Woodforde proved very popular when extracts from them were first published in the 1930s. The full text of the diary is now available, and in this volume the diarist's words bring vividly before us the quiet country life of the Rector of Weston Longville, his family and friends in the late 18th century.

The volume is likely to be of interest to many people researching family history in Norfolk, as literally hundreds of individuals are mentioned by name in Woodforde's pages.

This particular section of the diary also preserves a remarkable record of the aftermath of the eruption of the Laki fissures in Iceland in summer 1783. Throughout Europe and beyond, bizarre weather conditions and epidemics of illness were experienced, and there are few records of these phenomena as detailed as Woodforde's day-by-day account.

Heather Edwards is the author of The Earliest West Saxon Charters (1988) and of biographies of six early West Saxon kings in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography , and has also contributed articles to scholarly journals.

The volume can be obtained from:-

J. Alderson
Newland, Park Street, Castle Cary
Somerset, BA7 7ED

Price £27.50 including postage and packing within the U.K.

Harling Memories

Harry Apling's wonderful book
Norfolk Corn Windmills
along with around
1,500 other mill titles and documents
are available from
Alan Ticehurst

The Diary of Mary Hardy
a new work in four volumes published on 30 April 2013 

edited by

Margaret Bird

This absorbing 36-year daily record 1773-1809 by the wife of a farmer, miller, maltster and brewer shows us how 18th-century milling fitted into the local economy. Millers were often farmers and shipowners as well.
Mary Hardy tells of manufacturers' many problems. They faced water rights disputes, poor harvests, and the constant threat of bankruptcy. Building the huge watermills by Colls at Briggate and Rouse at Letheringsett led to ruin. The Hardys, by contrast, prospered.

Mary Hardy diary 1
Diary 1 was written on the Norfolk Broads, where the Hardys used keels and wherries to carry their produce. 
The other three were written at Letheringsett, near the coast, from where the Hardys shipped to Liverpool, Yorkshire and Tyneside.
Mary Hardy diary 2
Diary 2 describes the bold move to convert the Hardys' maltings and brewery to water power 1783-84 and incorporate a corn watermill.
Mary Hardy diary 3
Diary 3 includes the highly unusual daily diary of the teenage brewery apprentice Henry Raven, who in the 1790s was trained in malting, milling and millwrighting as well as brewing.
Mary Hardy diary 4
Diary 4 relates how The Hardys gave up cornmilling after their miller moved to Walsingham in 1798. At the upstream watermill Zebulon Rouse hosted Methodist meetings, was held in London for debt, and in 1804 was confined after attacking Mary Hardy's washerwoman. 
They will be available in certain local bookshops, such as the Holt Bookshop and also online from Amazon:  Price - £33.50 for each Diary volume. Purchasers can buy four for three: RRP £100.
Direct from the Burnham_Press_website - payment by cheque - £31.50 including UK postage for each Diary volume, or four for three at £94 including UK postage.

Full details of the contents are on the Mary Hardy websites:

You can read about the Hardys' maltings, where Henry Raven worked, at 
Letheringsett Brewery Cornmill

New Book Available Now!

A-Z of Norfolk Windmills

A superb visual round-up of more than 130 colour photographs by well-known aerial photographer, Mike Page with historical commentary by Alison Yardy, a recognised local enthusiast on Norfolk windmills.
This stunning book showcases Norfolk's wide variety of windmills including the beautifully restored, the picturesque derelicts, and some rather unusual examples of conversions to other uses.

Seeing Norfolk 's mills from the air provides a whole new perspective.

144 page Hardback Book
published by Halsgrove

Please if you wish to order

From the Norfolk Windmills Trust

A 38 page colour guide
Price: £2.50 + 50p post and packing

Available from the Trust: telephone 01603 222705
Norfolk Windmills Trust, County Hall, Martineau Lane, Norwich, NR1 2SG

NORFOLK'S WINDMILLS by river, road and rail
Luke Bonwick

Now available!

Price £6.99 + £1.
50 p&p

LB Book

An A5-size paperback book, designed as a guide to visiting and understanding
the county's best mills.

The book examines over 30 mills
those which were used for corn milling and for marshland drainage
as well as several 'unusual' mill sites.

It describes the personalities behind the mills
the millers who operated them and the millwrights who built and maintained them
and also looks at Norfolk's modern alternatives to the traditional windmill.

Example pages from the book are shown on the website listed below.

Please contact Luke Bonwick by for more information.

Mills Archive Trust
Mill Archive Trust

The Mills Archive Trust has books on Norfolk Mills available
on their website at
and usually they are good value.
For example they  offer Harry Apling's Norfolk Corn Windmills at £20.00
Luke Bonwick's Norfolk's Windmills by River, Road and Rail at £5.00.

A full list may be obtained by going to the site and then searching for Norfolk

Harry Apling's wonderful book
Norfolk Corn Windmills
along with around
1,500 other mill titles and documents
are available from
Alan Ticehurst
who holds the remaining stock
The book is a hardback with a dustjacket priced at £30.00 each incl. p&p

Alan Ticehurst, 49 Gore Park Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN21 1TG
Tel. 01323 736474

Please note that all photographs and material on this site are subject to copyright and must not be reproduced without prior permission from the owner.

However, if you are interested in purchasing a full size digital photo,
many are available, subject to copyright.

us or telephone 07836 675369
and don't forget to provide details of which photo you are interested in.

Copyright © Jonathan Neville 2008