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John Rennie and the Albion Mills (1784-91)

Jim Moher Those who have heard of the famous Scottish engineer, John Rennie (1761-1821), will probably remember him for his civil engineering achievements at the turn of the nineteenth century, such as the building of new London and Waterloo bridges. In fact, like many engineers of those days, Rennie also made considerable contributions to the…

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Sugar and slavery

Sugar & Slavery: Reproductive Mills is a new Mills Archive digital exhibition, launched in October 2021. It is the first of a series of online exhibitions. This exhibition sheds light on the links between technological developments in sugar milling and enslaved women’s reproductive systems, especially in the early nineteenth-century before the abolition of slavery. The exhibition…

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Mills make the world go round

By Mildred Cookson and Nathanael Hodge Mills are most well known for grinding corn into flour. However, over the centuries mills powered by wind, water and other power sources have been used for many other types of industry. You can find out more about some of these here: Paper mills Gunpowder mills Fulling mills Cotton…

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Niall Roberts (1922-2010)

Author: Michael Harverson Niall’s active interest in mills began when Wimbledon Common windmill, close to his home in New Malden, was restored and opened as a mill museum in 1976. He and his wife Julie acted as weekend guides there and organised the rota faithfully for many years. When he retired from the civil service,…

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Kenneth G Farries (d 1986)

Kenneth G Farries was one of the most productive and influential authors on windmills in the 20th century. The work of Ken Farries is probably unique in mill literature: five volumes devoted to the windmills, the millers and the millwrights of Essex, published in the 1980s, following his comprehensive study of The Windmills of Surrey…

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Don Paterson (d. 2002)

Don Paterson was a great lover of Lancashire mills with roots at Bretherton.  In 1982 he and Mildred Cookson decided to start up a North West Mills Group with Don as the chairman.  They produced a newsletter of which Don was the editor until 2000, he then went on to produce the annual review for…

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