Drainage Mills (Windpumps)
Steam Mills

Drayton postmill was one of a pair of mills on the same site. One was a smock mill, which is said to have been moved from Hellesdon, where it has been noted that the smockmill was blown down there in 1842. The other windmill was almost certainly a postmill.

In 1851, Jeremiah Howard was given as a miller and timber merchant aged 37 living in Drayton with his wife Sarah, 36, and also his nephew Frederick Butcher Randall, 17, and niece Maryann Howard, 11. Jeremiah Howard was born c.1814 in Hellesdon, Norfolk and Frederick Randall was born c.1834 in Taverham, Norfolk. Jeremiah Howard was listed in White's Directory of 1854 and Melville's Directory of 1856 as a flour and saw miller and also in White's Directory of 1868 as a corn and saw miller. Jeremiah Howard died in March 1887.

In 1881, Jeremiah Howard was given as living at 1, Upper Drayton Road, Drayton with his wife Emma, 38, and daughter Annie, 20. The mill was marked on the 1885 Ordnance Survey map.

HOWARD. - On the 29th ult., at the Mills, Drayton, Jeremiah, the much beloved husband of Emma Howard, aged 73.
Norfolk Chronicle - 2nd April 1887

ALL that well-known old-established BUSINESS, recently carried on by the late Mr. HOWARD, sold in consequence of his decease, situated in Drayton, near Norwich; the Engines, Boiler, Horses, Wagon and other Plant and Carriages, with the Stock-in-Trade, to be taken by valuation. - Apply to Messrs. Hunter, Auctioneers, St. Andrew's Hall Plain, Norwich.
Norfolk Chronicle - 30th April 1887

The mill was dismantled after Jeremiah Howard died, as a pair of French stones and some mill sails were included amongst the plant disposed of by auction in July 1887. It would seem that Jeremiah Howard had been running the smockmill to produce flour and was using steam engines to power a sawmill.

About Three-quarters of a-Mile from Drayton Station.
Viz., an 8-Horse-Power Vertical Engine, an Excellent 7-Horse-Power portable Engine, and a Valuable 8-Horse-Power ditto. A 4ft. 6in. Drum Threshing machine, Straw Elevator, Drums, Shafting, Driving Bands,
A CIRCULAR SAW TABLE, for a 40 in Saw, with Carriages and Tramway, another valuable Circular Saw Table, a Number of Circular and Other Saws, Boiler Guages, &c.
TWO POWERFUL HORSES, Carriages and Farm Implements, comprising: - A Norwich Pony Car, Vis-a-vis Pony Phaeton, Luggage Cart, an excellent Road Waggon on Springs, Tumbril, Two capital Timber Drags, Water Cart, Several Iron Tanks, Horse Roll, Plough, Harness, Chaff Engine, Root Pulper, &c.
Timber and Outdoor Effects, including a Pair of 4-ft French-Burr Mill-Stones, Mill Sails, Timber, Timber Ties, Plank, Scantling, Boards, Hurdles, Timber Jack, Racket-Brace, Tools, Chains, Wrought and Cast Iron, &c.
MESSRS HUNTER have received Instructions from the Executrix of the late Mr. J. HOWARD, Steam Sawyer, Drayton, to Sell by Auction the above Property, upon the Mill Ground, at Drayton, on Monday, July 11th, 1887.
The sale will commence at Twelve o'clock.
Catalogues of the Auctioneers, St. Andrew's Hall Plain, Norwich.

Norfolk Chronicle - 2nd July 1887

O.S. Map 1884
O.S. Map 1884
Mill marked in red with Drayton smockmill just to the southeast
Courtesy of NLS map images

Census 1851:

Jeremiah Howard (37) b.Hellesdon, miller and timber merchant
Howard (36) wife
Frederick Butcher Randall
(17) nephew
Maryann Howard
Address: Drayton

White's 1854: Jeremiah Howard, flour & saw miller

Melville's 1856: Jeremiah Howard, flour & saw miller

White's 1868: Jeremiah Howard, corn & saw miller

Census 1881:

Jeremiah Howard (37) b.Hellesdon, miller and timber merchant
Emma Howard (38) wife
Anna Howard (20)
Address: 1, Upper Drayton Road

O.S. map 1884: Windmill (Disused)

March 1887: Jeremiah Howard died

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 TG18981330 (approx)
-1851 to 1887+
All historical material within this page © Michael Roots Top of Page
Web design and website © Jonathan Neville, Norfolk Mills 2004