16 results

Company Profile: Whitmore and Binyon
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling

Whitmore and Binyon was a British Engineering Firm based at Wickham Market, Suffolk. When the roller milling revolution took place at the end of the 19th century it was already one of the oldest established engineering and millwrighting workshops in England. It briefly survived the transition to roller machinery and was one of the many manufacturers of it in England until the plant was sold in 1901. What follows is a brief timeline of the history of the company: 1780 – Wickham Market…

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Company Profile: Whitmore and Binyon 2
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling

Whitmore and Binyon was a British Engineering Firm that started life in 1780 when Mr. Nathaniel Whitmore opened an iron works. However, it was his son, Mr. John Whitmore, who made the Wickham Market Iron Works successful when he set out on his own in 1827, 15 years after Nathaniel Whitmore had died. Under John Whitmore the business grew. By 1843 the Iron Works employed 15 men and had its own fire engine. By 1851, 20 men were employed and by 1860, 60 men. In this same year Mr.…

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Holman Bros., Millwrights of Canterbury: A History
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling

A history of the Canterbury millwrighting firm, Holman Brothers Ltd., detailing the family and business history over 150 years. Initially started by the late Geoff Holman, completion passed to The Mills Archive staff and volunteers. This is a more detailed online version of a bound book presented to Geoff's family in September 2014; a copy of which can be found in our library.

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Important Individuals
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling

Name: Henry Simon Birth: 7 June 1835 in Brieg, Silesia. Death: 22 July 1899 in Manchester, England. Education: Engineering diploma from the Swiss Federal Technical College in Zurich. Occupation: Engineer Notable Accomplishments: Founded Henry Simon Ltd, producer of roller mill machinery. Installed the first complete roller mill plant in Britain for MacDougall Brothers in 1878. By 1892 had built over 400 mills in the UK, Europe, South Africa, India, South America, Australia and Japan with Henry Simon Ltd. plants established in Sydney, Australia in 1893 and in Nagasaki,…

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Mills of Finland
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling, Technological innovations

Rex Wailes’ Finnish Mills collection has been catalogued and digitised as part of the Reading Internship Scheme run by The Mills Archive in collaboration with the University of Reading. It has been completed to expand the Archive’s international collection online, and illustrate how far the collections cover worldwide, following the extensive travels of Rex and others around the provinces of Finland. Rex Wailes (1901-1986) was a pioneering British engineer who first took an interest in mills while working with…

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The Decline of Wind and Water Mills
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling

There was a time when every village had its wind or watermill; when mills were everywhere - an essential part of the economy. But over the past few centuries they have all but vanished. The collections of the Mills Archive allow us to tell the story of how this change came about. They also tell another story - of the people who sought to save the disappearing mills for posterity.

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The Great Fire of Embrook
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling

In 1884 a thriving paper mill near Wokingham, in Berkshire, was burnt to the ground. Newspaper reports revealed inconsistencies in the circumstances surrounding the fire, and despite generous insurance indemnity, within 6 years the firm was bankrupt. How did it happen?

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Watermills and Windmills of Middlesex (Second Edition)
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling

Originally this book was to be about windmills only. They had long held a certain fascination for me, and it seemed appropriate I should one day write a book about them. Watermills, to my mind, had none of their distinctive character, and therefore to be honest weren’t quite so attractive to me, although I nevertheless appreciated them as one should all historic buildings.  There having already been many windmill books of a general nature, I wanted to tackle the…

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Women in Milling
Categorised under: Themes on Mills and Milling

An investigation the role of women in the milling industry, based in part upon the 1881 census returns and also books, articles and other online resources from the Mills Archive catalogue. I have largely focused on the nineteenth century and later.

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