Bardwell Mill was built in the late 1820s and, at the date of this picture, was owned and run by Charles Harrison.
After his death in 1900, his widow Mary continued to run the mill with her nephew Charles Alderton. In this picture, dating from around 1888, will be Charles and Mary Harrison, with probably Charles’s sister Julia and her husband, Alfred May Alderton. The sails were removed in the 1920s, but have now been restored, and the mill is in working order again.
-- This picture is part of a remarkable collection of 4,000 photographs in the care of Bury St Edmunds Past and Present Society which offers a glimpse into the town’s history.
Taken by two families of professional photographers, the Spantons and the Jarmans, the images span a period from the 1860s through to the outbreak of World War Two. The fragile glass plate negatives were donated to the society in 1997 and in recent years many of these have been ‘digitised’ thanks to a Lottery grant and donations - a further £2,000 is needed to complete the task. They can be viewed at www.burypastandpresent.org.uk where you can also find details about membership and the group’s programme of events and lectures. The Spanton-Jarman collection is held at the Bury St Edmunds branch of the Suffolk Record Office. For more details about the Record Office, including its programme of talks and courses, visit www.suffolkarchives.co.uk.