Mills Archive

  • Web
  • Email
  • Telephone
      +44 (0)118 950 2052
  • Address
    • 44 Watlington Street, Reading RG1 4RJ, England, UK
  • Opening Hours
    • 10:00-15:00 Mon-Fri
  • Facilities for Disabled Persons
      The Archive occupies an historic building dating from 1688, and access for people with mobility problems is limited. Our premises are on the ground floor of Watlington House and in other parts of the building. There is level access to the Archive’s Library and Research Room from the car park at the front of the building. We can reserve a car parking space for disabled users on request. Toilets and kitchen facilities are in the basement, down a steep and winding flight of internal stairs. There is no lift. The designated emergency exit is via the front entrance to the assembly point in the car park. In the event of the front entrance being blocked, emergency exit is possible via the back door, leading to a flight of external steps. The Mills Archive also holds occasional events in the Garden Hall at the rear of Watlington House. There is a small car park and we can reserve a space on request. The Hall is accessed at the rear by two steps and at the front by one step. The doorway is a standard size so is not wide enough for a wheelchair. There are outside toilets next to the Hall with level access though they are not equipped for disabled use. Responsibility for additional facilities for disabled users within Watlington House and its grounds rests with the house management, to whom we are happy to forward any comments.
  • History

    The Mills Archive was established in 2002 as a permanent repository for historical and contemporary material on traditional mills and milling, and to make that material available for public inspection and use in research and learning. It is managed by the Mills Archive Trust and has rescued over a million documents and images that might otherwise have ended up in a landfill site.

    The archive was originally set up to care for four historically important Foundation Collections. The private collections of M. M. Cookson, J. K. Major and A. Stoyel are three of the largest collections of material on traditional mills and milling in the UK, and represent between them more than 130 years researching and working with mills. The fourth collection consists of material deposited over the years with the SPAB Mills Section by various mill researchers and enthusiasts; as the Section does not have the space or the expertise to develop these collections it has agreed to pass them to the Mills Archive to better care for them. In addition to these, the archive has been given many other collections of varying size. These show the rich and diverse crafts, buildings, machinery, equipment and people involved with mills in the UK and around the world.

List of Collections(View as Search Results)