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Page 7

Newsletter 102 Autumn, 2013  © Hampshire Mills Group

Days of Glory at the Mills Archive

Repairs and renovations to the Grade II listed Watlington House which houses the Mills Archive, are now complete and archiving activities have been resumed.  MAT is fully open again with something of a new look as a recent influx of funds has enabled the purchase of some new computer systems and the old, donated ones – whilst fine in themselves but wouldn’t ‘talk ‘to each other – have been de-commissioned. More elbow room has had to be managed for more new volunteers coming in to do their ‘bit’; this has meant some of the Library space has to accommodate a couple more desks but it is all better workwise.

Sir Alfred Munnings was a renowned artist who lived and raised his family in a Norfolk watermill, Mendham Mill.  Now a collection of detailed watermill sketches by his son, artist John Munnings, together with his notes and the typescript for a book has been passed to the Mills Archive where it will reside, available to researchers as the John Munnings Collection. 
 

Article Image

Shiplake Mill by John Munnnings

Bucks. Watermills Book

The Mead family handover Glory rights to MAT

Former papermill worker, Alan Mead, decided very generously to hand over all printing rights of his acclaimed history of the Glory Mills at Wooburn, Buckinghamshire to the Mills Archive Trust so that the archives will benefit from all future sales. The book, Days of Glory, has just had a third print run and these bear an inscription dedicating the proceeds to the Archives as Alan appreciates the work carried on there and the resources made available. Two members of his children were there to share in the handover. In the photograph they flank Alan and are joined by Ron Cookson MBE. The Glory Mills produced specialised photosensitive paper for many decades but was closed in October 1999 with the loss of 250 jobs.  It was just one of more than 30 Mills sites that once worked the little River Wye (under ten miles long) from West Wycombe to Hedsor where it entered into the River Thames.

At the same time as receiving the stock of Days of Glory, the Mills Archives Online Bookshop also received more copies of the Watermills of Buckinghamshire based on the research and photographs undertaken by Stanley Freese. This book has become a  ”Bible” to everyone involved in Buckinghamshire mill research.

The Munnings sketch of Shiplake Mill is well known but I don’t think anyone local knew who the artist was – until now.  Shiplake Mill was actually two mills: the larger one produced paper and the smaller, older one at the same site was a flour mill.  Located on the Oxfordshire riverbank beside Shiplake Lock it was demolished following a fire.  Sheila Viner will be carrying out a survey of the site in late September with Head Lock Keeper, who not only manages the site which still contains operational sluices, but has a keen interest in the mill’s history.

                                                                                                                                                                     Sheila M. Viner                          

 

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