Held at:

Private collection




Original photograph


Digital Archive: Photograph of the Mill Stores [Mill House]

Place name:

Michaelchurch Escley




This photograph of the Mill Stores, known today as Mill House, is presumed to have been taken in the early 1900s. The property is located just across the road from the water corn mill at Michaelchurch Escley and was built about 1835 as accommodation for the miller and his family.


Photograph courtesy of Grace Davies & Antony Fernandez



The particular history and occupancy of the property is documented elsewhere on this website, but by 1901 when Charles Price took over as miller it was also a grocery and general store for the village, served as the local Post Office and incorporated a bakery producing bread from flour ground at Michaelchurch Mill. Charles Price worked the mill between 1901 and 1917 while his wife ran the shop and bakery, so if the photograph was taken between those dates the lady at the door in the photograph is probably Mrs Price. If taken after his death in 1917 the lady may well be his sister who inherited the mill and moved there from Longtown with her husband Charles Lewis who took over as miller while she ran the shop and bakery, with their sons helping out in both businesses.

The large chimney on the lean-to at the right of the picture indicates that was where the bakery was located; it had wood-fired brick ovens which are said to have been removed in the 1960s. The chimney is no longer in evidence today and was presumably removed at the same time. The bakery at the Mill Stores closed about 1942 when the corn mill ceased operations because of agricultural controls during the Second World War and flour was no longer available locally. The mill never reopened for milling flour and animal feed, nor did baking resume at the stores - although baking was re-started at Michaelchurch around 1946 when Charles Lewis’s son Eric converted the corn mill itself into a bakery with modern steam ovens. Baking continued there for many years until the business finally moved to Kingstone. The Mill Stores meanwhile continued to operate as a village shop and Sub Post Office until near the end of the twentieth century, when it closed. It is now a private dwelling house.


A detailed study of the history of Michaelchurch Mill and the associated Mill Stores is available elsewhere on this website.

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