Monument record MCC2280 - Post medieval windmill (site of), Butt Road, Colchester


Post medieval windmill, west side of Butt Road (straddling Nos. 67-69). See also MCC5718.


Grid reference TL 99259 24694 (point)
Map sheet TL92SE


Type and Period (1)

Full Description

Windmill, Butt Road.<1><2><3><4>

A potter's kiln was found when the old windmill, which stood on the south side of Butt Road near the Salisbury Hotel, was pulled down in 1890. In that year the Museum acquired 'a portion of the top of a Roman pottery kiln on which the vessels were set for baking' (given to the museum by Henry Laver (COLEM1890.55).<5><6>

The history of milling at the Butt Road site begins in May 1660, when George Sandford bought land for the Mill. In September 1662 Sandford conveyed to John Gibson the younger (miller of Middle Mill) that the Mill was now completed.<7>

VCH 1994 (p.263) records that the mill was rebuilt soon after 1779 and, again, after a fire, in 1787. In 1824 it was a post mill with three pairs of stones over a brick round-house. It was repaired after storm damage in 1852 but demolished in 1881.<8>

Note that Butt Road is labelled as Mill Street on Monson's 1848 map, but the name had changed to Butt Road on the OS First County Series Epoch 1, 1874-87 (1:2500).<9> (Note, the mill is also depicted on James Deane's plan of 1748, The Iconography of Colchester).

The remains of the curving (red) brick base (the southwest outer part, based on the position and circumference), surviving to c.1.60m in height, are preserved within the basement of 69 Butt Road (viewed and photographed on 16/07/20), allowing the windmill to be accurately located (straddling Nos. 67-69). NB. It seems likely that the visible wall in the basement is the remains of the below-ground foundation of the brick round-house, and that the earth around/on the outside has been dug out (i.e. this would mean that the mill was demolished to ground level, with only below-ground foundations surviving). The wall appears to have been cut away/through by the brick foundation of the later house.<10>

Sources/Archives (10)

  • <1> Cartographic materials: Sparrow, Thomas. 1767. A survey of the Ancient Town & Borough of Colchester.
  • <2> Cartographic materials: Chapman, John and Andre, Peter. 1777. A Plan of Colchester. In chains.
  • <3> Monograph: Morant, Philip. 1748. History of Colchester (Wire's copy).
  • <4> Cartographic materials: Chapman, John and Andre, Peter. 1777. Map of Essex.
  • <5> Monograph: Hull, M. Rex. 1963. The Roman Potters Kilns of Colchester. XXI. p.9.
  • <6> Monograph: Hull, M.R.. 1958. Roman Colchester: Reports of the Research Committee of the Society of Antiquaries of London. No. XX. p.248.
  • <7> Serial: Farries, Kenneth G.. 1984. Essex Windmills, Millers and Millwrights Volume 3. Volume 3. p.89.
  • <8> Monograph: Cooper, Janet (Ed). 1994. Vol. IX, The Borough of Colchester, A History of the County of Essex. Volume IX. p.263.
  • <9> Cartographic materials: Monson, E (Mr). 1848. Colchester 1848. 13.3 " to the mile.
  • <10> Photograph: Tipper, Jess. 2020. Digital photographs of remains of Post medieval windmill, Butt Road, Colchester.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (4)

Record last edited

Aug 27 2020 9:14AM

Comments and Feedback

Do you have any more information about this record? Please feel free to comment with information and photographs, or ask any questions, using the "Disqus" tool below. Comments are moderated, and we aim to respond/publish as soon as possible.