Drainage Mills (Windpumps)
Steam Mills

Hilgay postmill stood just to the east side of West End and was probably operating on its site for at least 250 years.

Wheel & Millwright, Joiner & General Smith
Thanks his friends for their patronage during the last 30 years & solicits a continuance of their commands in the above branches of business.
Steam & Horse machines of all kinds carefully attended to.
Agricultural Implements of the most approved principles built or repaired.
Joiners & Smiths work of every description.
Timbers sawn by steam power.

Lynn Advertiser - 13th October 1866

WANTED immediately, a steady man as JOURNEYMAN WHEELWRIGHT & CARPENTER, constant work for a good hand.
Apply to John Whittome, Millwright etc., Hilgay, Downham Market.

Lynn Advertiser - 18th November 1871

For Sale
An Iron Wind Shaft suitable for a post or tower mill.
Apply to J. Whittome, Millwright, Hilgay, Downham Market.

Lynn Advertiser - 26th June 1880

John Whittome died in 1891 and was buried in Hilgay churchyard, to the south of the church. The distinctive headstone bore the carving of a large tower windmill with a stage, possibly Denver and was inscribed:
In loving memory of
John Whittome
died May 10th 1891
aged 74 years
also of
Elizabeth his wife
died March 31st 1894
aged 76 years
God is love

The postmill stood to the south of the footpath, site now two cottages.
Family house was built by John Whittombe in Holt's Lane with a steam mill and foundry nearby.
Windmill belonged to George Whittome (grandfather) and his cousin Richard Whittombe.
Mill demolished before 1900.

Frederick Edward Whittombe, 322 Wootton Road, Kings Lynn - 26th May 1972

O.S. Map 1890 - 1891
Postmill top left; Hilgay Ely Road smockmill bottom centre
O.S. Map 1890 - 1891
Image produced from the www.old-maps.co.uk service with permission of Landmark Information Group Ltd. and Ordnance Survey

It has not been possible to accurately place all individual millers with a respective mill in Hilgay.

White's 1845: John Scott, millwright

White's 1845: William Whitham, beerhouse

Whites 1864: John Whittombe, millwright & c.
White's 1864: Mary Ann Whitten, baker

1875: Charles Hooton, miller

Kelly's 1912: George Whittombe, wheelwright

The Whittome family also ran Hilgay Ely Road smockmill for several generations.

The Great Levell Drayned - Dugdale 1662: Windmill

Ogilby Britannia London to Kings Lynn map 1675: windmill

Index of Wills 1725: John Eaton, miller

Index of Wills 1787: Philip Bovell, miller

Poll Book 1802: William Whitsom, miller

O.S. map 1824: Windmill

Bryant's map 1826: windmill

White's 1836: Robert Whitten, corn miller

1850: John Whitton, miller

1853: Robert Whitten, miller

White's 1854: Robert Whitten, corn miller

1868: John Whittome, miller & millwright

1872: John Whittome, miller & millwright

White's 1883: John Whittome, corn miller, wheelwright, engineer, millwright, iron and brass founder and smith

10th May 1891: John Whittome died aged 74 and was buried in Hilgay churchyard

31st March 1894: John Whittombe's wife Elizabeth died at the age of 76

Kelly's 1896: George Whittome, engineer, millwright, machinist, smith & miller (wind & steam)

Kelly's 1900: George Whittome, engineer, millwright, machinist, smith & miller (wind & steam)

Kelly's 1904: George Whittome, engineer, millwright, machinist, smith & miller (wind & steam)

Kelly's 1908: George Whittome, wheelwright, engineer, millwright, machinist, smith & miller (wind & steam)

1980: Mill site occupied by two cottages

If you have any memories, anecdotes or photos please let us know and we may be able to use them to update the site. By all means telephone 07836 675369 or

Nat Grid Ref TL61879825
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Copyright © Jonathan Neville 2007