drainage pump
River Yare


Halvergate Lockgate drainage mill is also known as Freethorpe Mill and in the past as Banham's Black Mill or Duffel's Mill. The mill stood in an isolated spot on the Halvergate Marshes next to Breydon Water about 1½ miles to the west Lockgate Farm, which itself was demolished in 1981, after lying derelect for many years. The four storey black tarred, Grade ll listed mill is is actually in the parish of Freethorpe approximately two miles west of Gt. Yarmouth. The tower stood 35 feet high to the curb, with a base diameter of 24 feet. A small cottage stood about 25 yards to the north of the mill.

The mill used 4 patent sails that turned clockwise to drive a 19 ft. diameter scoop wheel with 7 inch paddles. Despite being only 800 yards from the junction of Halvergate Fleet and Breydon Water, the mill actually drained Acle Marshes that lay to the north of the mill.

8th August 1976 5th July 1988
8th August 1976
5th July 1988

November 2004
November 2004

My family lived and worked Lockgate Mill from 1944-1945. My father's name was Leonard William Rose, I was two years old at the time and do not remember it. We then moved across the marshes to Scaregap farm.       
Fred Rose - 24th June 2010

I used to birdwatch here in the late 50's early 60's  being a follower of Arthur Pattersons books and sheltered in the delapidated house on many occasions - the house was almost falling down but you could still get upstairs and I remember the many horizontal laths of wood on the walls which I assume were plastered over at one time. I picked up two metal discs which were the end pieces of the reinforcement rods holding the place together but had fallen to the ground - still use them as weights in my garden !     
Ron Sheldon - 6th April 2017

c.1923: Gordon Addison, Lockgate Farm

1800-1825: Mill built

Dan Banham - earliest recorded mill keeper

c.1922: Bob Banham

1944-1945: Leonard William Rose

c.1945: Leonard Carter

1953: Sails blown off in a gale

1988: Protective aluminium cap fitted

2001: Majority of machinery destroyed by fire after being set alight by vandals

2008: Scoop wheel remains still adjacent to outside of mill

2023: Mill added to the Save Britain's Heritages list of buildings at risk register

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. TG 48020714
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Copyright © Jonathan Neville 2005