Drainage Mills (Windpumps)
Steam Mills

Sprowston southern tower mill was known by many as Bond's Mill and it may have been preceded by a post mill. It stood to the south of the northern_towermill and the adjacent eastern_mill on the same site. All three mills stood in the area of gravel pits, clay pits and brickfields serving much of the building needs of the city. Sprowston_postmill stood a short distance further north.

The mill had the most varied uses of any in Norwich.
They were; - corn milling, bark grinding, oil milling and rice milling.

The mill used patent sails to power 2 pairs of French burr stones, a jumper and a stripping machine.
In 1858 a pair of cones were being run to grind bark, greaves, oil cake etc.

Henry Bond had taken the mill by 1827. The mill lost its cap in a gale in 1827.

Last Sunday afternoon during a violent gale of wind from the W.N.W. approaching almost a hurricane, a windmill at Bungay was blown down, and two others, one at Hempnall and another at Sprowston lost their caps and sails.
Norfolk Chronicle - 19th January 1827

Henry Bond was born c.1794 in Winterton, Norfolk and had married Martha Tuck at Winterton on 12th November 1823. In 1825, a son, Henry William was born and on the 23rd June 1827, a daughter, Harriet Jane was born. Then on 13th November 1828, a daughter, Ann was born and in 1830 a son, Frederic Charles, was born.

Thomas Bond was listed in Pigot’s Directory of 1830

On the 20th August 1831, a daughter, Martha, was born, on the 28th May 1833, a daughter, Elizabeth, was born. In August 1834, Henry William Bond died, aged 93. On the 16th December 1834, a daughter, Caroline, was born, on the 25th February 1836, a son, William, was born and on the 1st June 1837, a son, George William, was born. In November 1836, William Bond died, aged 8 months. In  October  1838, Frederic Bond died as an infant.

Some land near Thomas Bond’s mill at Sprowston was for sale in 1838. The mill was marked on the 1838 map . In June 1840, Caroline Bond died, aged 5. Henry Bond was listed in Blyth’s Directory of 1842.

To be sold or let
At Sprowston

A brick Tower Wind Mill driving two pairs of stones, with a cottage etc.
Apply to Mr. Welch, Strumpshaw.

Norwich Mercury - 15th January 1842

Tower Mill, with Patent Sails,

RESPECTFULLY acquaints the Public, that he is instructed to SELL by AUCTION. on Saturday, the 24th of September, 1842, at Three o'clock in the Afternoon, at the Norfolk Hotel, in the city of Norwich, all that
With Patent Sails, two pair of French Stones, Flour Mill and Jumper, Stripping Machine, &c. &c. situate at Sprowston, near Norwich.
Also, a Cottage adjoining, with a Granary, Stable, and Cart-lodge, in the occupation of Mr. Henry Bond
The mill stands remarkably well for Wind, is substantially built, and capable of doing considerable Business, being within a short distance of the city.
Land-tax 1s. per annum
For particulars and conditions of Sale apply at the Office of Mr. Durrant, Solicitor, Surrey Street, or at Mr. Spelman’s O
ffices, St. Giles’ Street, Norwich.
Norfolk Chronicle - 17th September 1842

Spelman Sale Catalogue

Sale of an excellent Freehold Brick Tower Wind-Mill with Cottage etc. eligibly situated in Sprowston in the County of Norfolk which will be offered for Sale by Auction
By Mr. Spelman
At the Norfolk Hotel, St. Giles Street, Norwich
On Saturday the Twentyfourth of September 1842
at Three o'clock in the Afternoon.
All that Freehold Brick Tower Wind Mill
With patent Sails, two pairs of French Stones, Flour Mill and Jumper, Stripping Machine etc. etc. situate at
Sprowston, near Norwich.
Also a COTTAGE adjoining with Stable and Cart lodge, all in the occupation of Mr. Henry Bond.
The Mill stands remarkably well for wind, is substantially built and being within a short distance of Norwich is capable of doing a considerable Business at a trifling outlay.
Land Tax One shilling per annum.
The purchaser can, if required, be accommodated with immediate possession.

Tithe Award 1844
Map - W. S. Millard & Son, Norwich, 1843
Owner: Thomas Caryll
Occupier: Henry Bond
No. 410
No. 411
House, Mill & Garden
0a. 1r. 2p.
0a. 1r. 39p.

Tithe map 1843 as redrawn by Harry Apling
Mill marked in red at 411
Northern and Eastern mills at 415
Sprowston postmill at 337

On the 15th September 1844, a son, Henry jnr was born. On the 8th and 9th of February 1851, two of Henry Bond’s daughters, Bessy and Martha, died within a day of each other. Bessy’s real name was Elizabeth. They were both buried on 14th February 1851.


Friday last, Bessy Bond, aged 17, and on the following day, Martha, her sister, aged 19, the beloved daughters of Mr. Bond, miller, of Sprowston, in this county.
Norfolk Chronicle - 15th February 1851

Henry Bond was given as a miller aged 57 living in Wroxham Road, Sprowston with his wife Martha (54) sons Frederick (21) a miller, William George (14), Henry (12) and daughter Ann (22). Also living with the family was his mother-in-law Elizabeth Tuck, (80).


Saturday last, to the inexpressible grief of his family and friends, Frederick Charles, aged 25, the eldest and beloved son of Mr. Bond, miller, Sprowston.
Norfolk Chronicle - 27th January 1855

Frederick Charles Bond was buried on the 26th January 1855. The mill was for sale in September 1855.


MR. BUTCHER is instructed to Sell by Private Contract, the Capital TOWER WINDMILL, Dwelling House, Stables, Outbuildings, and Garden, in the occupation of Mr. Henry Bond, at a Rent of £30 per annum.
For Price and Particulars apply to Mr. Butcher, Auctioneer, Norwich, or to Mr. Panfield, 38, Green’s End, Woolwich.

Norfolk Chronicle - 8th & 15th September 1855

Land allotted under Sprowston Inclosure Act to the late John Morse Esq.
With other property, conveyed by him to the late Jonathan Davey, Esq. under indenture of lease and release dated 5th and 6th October 1802.
Abstract to commence with these deeds.
Note in pencil:-
Bot in at £600

Conditions of Sale

To be Sold - A Bargain

A PAIR OF CONES for Grinding Bark, Greaves, Oil Cake etc.
Apply to Mr. H. Bond, Miller, Sprowston.

Norfolk News - 11th December 1858

N.B. Greaves is variously defined as being the fibrous matter or skin found in animal fat which forms a sediment in melting and is pressed into cakes for dog food, fish bait etc. It is the refuse of tallow or cracklings.
The smell of this product would be considerable in a confined space if kept for any length of time.

To be Let

At SPROWSTON, next Norwich and with possession at Christmas next.
A BRICK TOWER WINDMILL driving two pairs of Stones, Flour Mill and Jumper and Dwelling house with Wash-house, Coal-house, Stable and Cart Lodge adjoining.
Apply to Wm. Fulcher, Millwright, Mousehold, Norwich.

Norfolk News - 11th December 1858

To Millers

WANTED, by an experienced Man, a Situation in the above Trade, has been accustomed to a Steam Engine. Satisfactory references can be given.
Apply to B. Y., Sprowston Mill, Norwich.

Norfolk News - 24th December 1859


A lad named Rump, charged on remand with stealing several sacks, the property of his father, was discharged with a caution, as the prosecutor was unwilling to proceed.


William Rump, a young man about twenty, described as a miller of Sprowston, was charged with obtaining by false pretences two bushels of beans, and a sack, the property of Alfred C. Culley, of Duke’s Palace. – It appeared from the evidence that on the 15th ult. the prisoner went to the shop of the prosecutor and obtained the property mentioned by stating that it was for his father, a customer of Mr. Culley’s, who, he said, would pay for it the same afternoon. As payment was not offered, enquiries were set on foot, and it was found that Mr. Rump had not given the prisoner any authority to get the beans. – The prisoner, who bore an exceedingly bad character, was committed for trial.
Norfolk Chronicle - 5th January 1867

An attempt was made in 1868 to declare William Rump bankrupt.

(Before T. J. BIRCH, Esq., Judge)

William Rump, miller and corn merchant, Sprowston, having debts to the extent of £119.19s. 6d. The figures on the other side are £278.13s. making a difference in the bankrupt’s favour of £158.13s. 6d. – Mr. Stanley, solicitor.
Norfolk Chronicle - 8th February 1868

Henry Bond jnr took over Mile_Cross_smockmill in 1856 and Sprowston tower mill is said to have been demolished by him in 1860. However, there is some evidence that the mill stood for quite a while after this date. In Kelly’s Directory for 1875 the entry for Catton states, ... there are two windmills and a saw mill. The following advert appeared in February 1876.

In the High Court of Justice
Chancery Division

In the matter of the Norwich and Norfolk Provident Permanent Benefit Building Society,


In the Matter of “The Companie’s Acts, 1862 and 1867.”
Freehold, Leasehold, and Copyhold Property, in and near the City of Norwich, and at Yoxford, in the County of Suffolk.
TO BE SOLD, pursuant to an order made in the above Matters, with the approbation of the Vice-Chancellor, Sir Charles Hall, by
The person appointed by the said Judge, on Tuesday, the 14th of March, 1876, at the Royal Hotel, Norwich, at Six for Seven o'clock in the Evening, in Ten Lots.
Lot 1. – All that Freehold TOWER WINDMILL and COTTAGE, and about 90 Rods of Land appurtenant thereto, now in the occupation of Alfred Walker.
Annual rental value 
£12. 0s. 5d.
Particulars and Conditions of Sale may be had of the Official Liquidator, Mr. Samuel Culley, Queen Street, Norwich; of Messrs. Whites, Renard, and Co., 28, Budge Row, Cannon Street, London, E. C., of the Auctioneer, Bank Plain, Norwich; and of the Vendor’s Solicitor.
Dated this 8th day of February, 1876.

H. F. Church
Chief Clerk.
Queen Street, Norwich,
Vendor’s Solicitor.

Norfolk Chronicle - 26th February 1876


Tower Windmill,House, Outbuildings and Granary at Sprowston occupied by Mr. Brock.
James Mobbs, Auctioneer & Estate Agent, 4 Castle Meadow, Norwich.

Norfolk Chronicle - 25th July to 4th October 1891

Robert Mears took the mill by 1872. He was born c.1818 at Trowse Millgate and in 1861 was given as a miller aged 43 living in Philadelphia, St. Clement’s with his wife Sarah E. (45). In 1871 he was given as a retired miller aged 53 living in Philadelphia Lane, St. Clement’s with his wife Sarah E. (55). In 1881 he was given as living at Mill Lane, Sprowston with his wife Mary (50).
Henry Benjamin Brock was the next miller. He was born in Hellesdon on the 13th December 1860. His parents were Stephen and Sophia Brock (née Starling). He was the miller in 1882. The mill was marked on the 1884 map. Henry Benjamin Brock was married to Sarah Christiana Howard at St. Mary’s Baptist Chapel, Norwich on 25th March 1883. The mill may have been powered by steam only during this time. In 1908 he was at Keswick_watermill and he retired in 1920, later moving to Cringleford. He died on the 6th April 1936 and was buried at Cringleford.

The mill may have been demolished in 1906, which is the last known date that Henry Benjamin Brock was miller at Sprowston.

O. S. Map 1883
O. S. Map 1883
Mill marked in red, bottom centre right
Sprowston postmill top right marked in blue
Courtesy of NLS map images

1826: Mill working as a corn mill

January 1827: Mill lost its cap in a gale

1827: Henry Bond, miller

Pigot's 1830: Thomas Bond, miller, Sprowston

August 1834: Henry William Bond died, aged 93

1836: Henry Bond, miller

O.S. map 1838: Windmill

1839: Henry Bond, miller

1840: Henry Bond, miller

Blyth's 1842: Henry Bond, miller

January 1842: Mill advertised for sale or let

September 1842: Mill advertised for sale by auction

Tithe map 1843: Windmill

Tithe Award 1844: Owner: Thomas Caryll; Occupier: Henry Bond

1845: Henry Bond, miller

1846: Henry Bond, miller

1850: Henry Bond, miller

1850: Mill working as a sawmill

1854: Henry Bond, miller

1855: Henry Bond, miller

September 1855: Mill advertised for sale by private contract

1858: Henry Bond, miller

December 1858: Pair of cones for grinding bark, greaves or oil cake advertised for sale

December 1858: Mill advertised to be let

1859: Henry Bond, miller

1866: John Rump, corn miller

1867: John Rump, corn miller

1868: John Rump, corn miller

1876: Alfred Walker, miller

February 1876: Mill advertised for sale by auction

1868: John Rump, corn miller

1872: Robert Mears, miller

1875: Robert Mears, miller

1879: Robert Mears, miller

1881: Robert Mears, miller

1883: Robert Mears, miller

1883: O.S. map: Windmill (Corn)

1891: Henry Benjamin Brock, miller (Steam)

October 1891: Mill advertised to be let

1892: Henry Benjamin Brock, miller (Steam)

Kelly's 1904: Henry Benjamin Brock, miller (Steam)

1908: Henry Benjamin Brock moved to Keswick watermill

6th April 1936: Henry Benjamin Brock 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 TG23951073
-1807 to 1876+
All historical written material within this page
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