Research of Sarah Tanner


Chronological Archive Notes

Chafford Mill


It was not possible to ascertain where some of the original source material was located however references are quoted where possible.

AWA: Arjo-Wiggins Archive           BL: British Library          CKS:  Centre for Kentish Studies, Maidstone     GHL:  Guildhall Library

HMA: Hayle Mill Archive                JVS: Jean Stirk.              MALSC: Medway Archives & Local Studies Centre   

NPM: National Paper Archive held at Manchester Museum of Science & Technology     RA: Royal Archive, Windsor Castle  

TNA: The National Archive  [The name shown after the date in the De La Rue entries is that of the man signing the order]                                                                    

[Much of the archive formerly in Sevenoaks Library has now been moved to CKS]



1691    21 April  Indenture : Marriage Settlement :

Between Sir George Rivers Bart., of Chafford

Dorothy his wife, grants to 2,3,4 Trustees.

1.      Manor or Lordship of Ashurst , Kent

2.      Chafford or Chafford Place & Chafford park with lands etc 250A

3.      A barn and land called Fordcombe Fulling Mill & Chepted Mead 100A, late occupied John Woodhams –

all above in Penshurst, Ashhurst, Speldhurst and Chiddingstone.

4.      The Manor House of Ashurst & lands in occupation Saml Rogers belonging to same 100A

5.      Tenement in which Roger Rogers now dwelleth with the Fulling Mill 8A, Coney Burrow  Fields 12A :

all in Penshurst and occupied by Roger Rogers

6.      Chafford Island 16A in Penshurst in occupation Roger Rogers

7.      Mill house with 2 water mills, one a Wheate Mill and the other a Malt Mill called Chafford Mills in

Chafford Park in Penshurst in occupation of Robert Hollamby

[Sevenoaks Ward Book : Penshurst 1 -  page 12 box 10 Sevenoaks Library]         

 ‘the mill house and 2 mills 1 wheat and 1 malt, commonly known as Chafford Mills’

            [Original at CKS under old ref :  KAO303 T 7-9]


1729    Oliver Stidolph married Sarah Browne 26 August 1729 at West Hoathley Sussex and their son William was baptised 2 April 1734 at Edenbridge. 

He first appears in the parish registers at Penshurst in May 1737 when his son Thomas was baptised there.

[Parish Register Entries for Stidolph

1729 26/8 Oliver Stidolph = Sarah Browne at West Hoathly Sussex

                1734 2/4 William Stidolph was baptised at Edenbridge

                1737 12/5 Thomas son of Oliver & Sarah Stedolf baptised at Penshurst

                1740 24/8 Ann dau of Oliver & Sarah Stidolph baptised at Penshurst

                1752 10/2 Hamlin Stidolph was buried at Penshurst

                1765 23/4 Wm Stidolph = Eliz. Mills at Tonbridge

                1766 2/5 Elizabeth dau of William Stidolph papermaker and wife Elizabeth was baptised at Penshurst

                1768 24/8 Sarah dau William and Elizabeth Stidolph was christened at home by Boyce Rector of Ashurst

                 [listed in Penshurst register but does not appear in Ashurst register]

                1771 8/6 Martha dau of Willm & Elizth Stidolph was baptised by Edwd Boyce Rector of Ashurst at Penshurst

                1772 18/4 Oliver Stidolph was buried at Penshurst

                1772 6/8 Hester Mary dau of Willm & Elizth Stidolph was baptised at Penshurst

                1775 29/3 Sarah Stidolph was buried at Penshurst

                1778 20/5 Susannah dau of Thos and Elizabeth Stidolph was baptised at Penshurst             

                1780 9/5  Sophia Ann dau Willm & Elizth Stidolph was baptised at Penshurst

                1782 17/2 Oliver son of Thos and Elizabeth Stidolph was baptised at Penshurst

                1784 28/12 Wm 2 Hamlin Wm & Elizth Stidolph was baptised at Penshurst

                On JVS card Stidolph ? Grandson William Hamlin Stidolph Papermaker married Sarah

                in 1784 Edenbridge ?    LG 1827 William Hamlin Stidolph bankrupt of Bagnor Mill Berkshire]



1754    Kent Poll Book

            Oliver Stedolph  Penshurst  House and land himself


1757-   Penshurst Rates:

1772    Oliver Stidolph  Rate £5 assessment of 2/6d in Hall Borough Penshurst -

            but Richard then William Woodhams  for Fulling Mill Island Rate £3 assessment 1/6d

            [See appendix 1][Ref:  CKS  1721-60  [P287/5/1]  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1756    6 May  Oliver Stidolph of Penshurst in the County of Kent, paper maker on his Paper Mills, Fulling Mills and Corn Mills only under one roof in his own occupation not exceeding  £600             Stock therein only not exceeding £400    £2.10.0 Michelmas

            ‘Sun Fire Insurance Policy 152247.[Guildhall Library ref MS 11936/114]

‘Although the above policy specifies three mills, the fulling mill appears to have become redundant after this date which might account for the Chafford Estate investing at that time in a more profitable venture, possibly at the Stiddolphs’ suggestion.  The fact that the paper mill came into being as a separate entity at a comparatively late date implies that it was designed to accommodate an engine of sorts requiring a power transmission to suit.  If it had been a paper mill with hammers and mortars then the fulling mill could have been adapted for use in the traditional process as earlier fulling mills had been.  But this would have been a most unlikely course of action in 1756.’

 [The Elder James Whatman by J.N.Blaston  1992 p296/297]


1759/  There are entries of a Ralph Swanton paper maker in the Penshurst Parish registers

1760    [Transcripts of Penshurst PR’s at Sevenoaks Library]


1762    Wm Stiddolph  of Pensherst (sic)  papermaker took an apprentice, Sam Bostock £10

            (SOG: Apprentices of Great Britain Index IR/1/23/101) 


1766    2 May Elizabeth daughter  of William Stidolph papermaker and his wife Elizabeth was

baptised at Penshurst [Transcripts of Penshurst PR’s at Sevenoaks Library]


1767    Whereas by Indenture dated on or about 25 December 1767 and made between Oliver Stidolph of Penshurst aforesaid Yeoman of one part and the said Robert Crofsley the other part it is witnessed that in the consideration of the sum of £800 to the said Oliver Stidolph paid by the said Robert Crofsley he the said Oliver Stidolph did devise, grant and bargain and sell unto the said Robert Crofsley his executors and administrators and afsignees all those messuages and tenements (one of them lately erected and stone built) with the barn stable fulling mill water mill paper mill and all other buildings and premises of about 15 acres then in the tenure or occupation of Oliver Stidolph and the said William Stidolph the son or their assignees for 1000 years.

[CKS ref: U36 T459]


1769    Stidolph William of Penshurst took Richard Barker apprentice £50 [IR/1/26/094]


1770    William Stidolph was making White countermarked paper by the 1770’s


1772    18 April Oliver Stidolph was buried at Penshurst 

[Transcripts of Penshurst PR’s at Sevenoaks Library -  No Will listed at FRC or CKS]


1772    Penshurst Rates: Wm Stidolph  rate £10  assessment  2/6d  [After this date occupiers were listed alphabetically]

[CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1772    29 October 1772  William Stidolph of Penshurst in the Co. of Kent, papermaker. On his Paper Mill & Corn Mill under one roof in his own occupation timber and tiled situate as aforesaid not exceeding £1000. Utensils and stock therein not exceeding £500.   £3.15.0 Michelmas

            [GHL : MS 11936/210 Sun Fire Insurance Policy No: 303789 (Vol. 210)]   


1778    Overseas of the Parish of Teston

From Wm Stubbersfield and Henry Medhurst jointly of Teston for the payment of two shillings a week for Richd Selves natural

son of Mary Selves singlewoman so long as the said Richd Selves shall be chargeable to the Parish of West Farleigh]

[CKS P132/13/1  West Farleigh, Kent document dated 1778]


1779    Penshurst Rates: Wm Stidolph  rate £20 assessment £1 and for Fulling Mill Island Rate £6  assessment 1/6d

[Ref:  CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1780    Tunbridge Wells Guide

             ‘Chafford, The Paper Mills, Are fituated on the River Medway about four miles from Tunbridge Wells, on the road leading to Penfhurft, by Lankinton-Green, and are the property of Mr. William Stidolph. The mills and appertenancies are large and commodious, and noted for making fine writing papers but they are now more effentially employed in making cartridge papers, to fupply the ordinance at the Tower of London: which commiffion, Mr Stidolph has lately acquired, through the intereft of the Right Hon.Lord George Germain.  The river, together with the dam, belonging to thefe mills, produces fine fport in angling during the fummer feafon, which frequently induces the company to make a day’s paftime there, by leave of the good natured owner, who is willing to render them every affiftance, to make the fport more agreeable and fuccefsful’.


1780    Penshurst Land Tax

            A Wm Elgar appears in the rates books as a proprietor with Edward ?Tomber as occupier  Rate £3  assessment   12/0d


1781    23 November William Stidolph became bound to Lake Young of London Merchant and Samuel Burroughs of St Mary Lambeth bricklayer assignees of the estate and effects of William Harrison late of the borough of  Suffolk glazier  £778.10.0d   £380.54 + interest but only £232.8.9 + interest remains due and unpaid.  He also became indebted to James Taylor principle sum £2000 upon bond or obligation which was lent by James Taylor to pay off debts.

[CKS ref: U36 T459]


1782/3 William Stidolph Rate £60 assessment of 15/0d and for Fulling Mill Island £6  1/6d

            [Ref:  CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1782    3 January  Stephen Monkton called in about the Trinity Term Court of Kings Bench in Westminster the debts of  Stidolph and Mills and they did not have enough to pay the principle – they brought their writ of error upon the judgement in order to gain time for payment  

[Kings Bench Records TNA]

Samuel Kendrick of Covil Court St Martins Lane in order to indemnify the said writ of error the said Samuel Kenrick for so borrowing bail the said William Stidolph and George Mills and Thomas Stidolph of Penshurst Yeoman have entered into one bond or obligation

4 December last in the penal sum of £500. [CKS ref: U36 T459]

            This writ appears to have resulted in a proposed sale of Chafford – however it obviously did not  sell as William Stidolph entered into yet another indenture to borrow more money.

The solicitors Thomas Swain and Thomas Bowdler had also not been paid


1782    TNA Ref: C12/127/9  Stidolph v Monktonb r.r 1782

TNA Ref: C12/128/34             Stidolph v Milsb 1783

TNA Ref: C12/133/9   Stidolph v Montktonb r.r.r  1783

I looked at C12/127/9 – the complainants were William Stidolph and George Mills against Timothy and Stephen Monchton who were brothers.  They entered into a mortgage to lend Stidolph money to carry on the business of paper manufacture at Chafford Mill Penshurst.  In Jan 1781  Stidolph was claiming that they renegaded on the deal. “Jan 1781 William Stidolph received a letter from Timothy Monchton asking him to meet his brother Stephen in London, they met at Leaping Bar Coffee House near Blackfriars Bridge where Stephen informed William Stidolph that Timothy Monchton had surrendered himself as a prisoner in the Kings Bench Prison. The first sheet of parchment was Stidolph and Mills deposition and the next two from the Monchton’s giving their version of events.

C33/462 folio 303 (over page) for judgement there were two entries but I could not understand from either exactly what the outcome was.   Was quite complicated you look in IND:1 for the dates. Then go to C33 to look for judgement – I was confused and forgot to write down dates so this  needs further investigation.


1782    Kentish Gazette  7th – 10th  August [copy from Canterbury Library]


To be Sold by AUCTION


On Monday the 26th Day of Auguft

At Twelve o’Clock at Garawy’s Coffee-houfe, Change-alley. Cornhill, London

Subject to fuch Conditions of Sale, as will be then and there produced

            A Valuable FREEHOLD ESTATE confisting of a DOUBLE PAPER MILL under one Roof, worked by a never failing Stream branching from the River Medway, and fupplied with a very excellent Spring fit for making the beft of Paper, with two spacious Drying-houfes detached, together with two Dwelling-houfes, one of which is handfome, genteel, and new-built, ftanding on a pleafant eminence, with a River in Front, over which is a Chinese Bridge and Fish pond adjoining, and commands a moft delightful and romantic profpect, with a Stable and other convenient Out buildings, and above twenty Acres of Meadow and Paftures Land adjoining; situate together, in the Parifh of Penfhurft in the County of Kent, about thirty four Miles from London, and four from Tunbridge Wells.

May be viewed and printed Particulars had, of

Mr Woodgate and Mr Mills, Attorneys, at Sevenoaks;

Suffex Tavern, Tonbridge Wells; Bell, at Bromley;

 Bull, at Maidstone; and of Mr.BENGE, Effex-ftreet, Strand, London


1783    Indenture between William Stidolph and George Mills 11th July 1783
Between Robert Crossley of Sevenoaks, George Mills gentleman Sevenoaks and Stephen Woodgate Gentleman Sevenoaks, Thomas Horton Sevenoaks Schoolmaster and William Stidolph papermaker of the one part and James Taylor of Kingsdown Gentleman and Thomas Swayne of Tonbridge Gentleman – [this is when they got tied to Swayne and Taylor] two messuage and tenements one of these lately erected and stone built situated in Penshurst now in the occupation of William Stidolph with a barn, stable, fulling mill watermill paper mills [CKS ref: U36 T459]


1783    Indenture of five parts dated 12 July 1783 between Robert Crofsley the younger of Sevenoaks in Kent wheelwright of the first part, Thomas Horton of the same place schoolmaster of the second part, George Hills of the same place gentleman and Stephen Woodgate of the same place gentlemen of the third part William Stidolph of Penshurst Kent papermaker of the fourth part and James Taylor* of Kingsdown Kent gentleman and Thomas Swayne of Tonbridge gentleman of the fifth part. [CKS ref: U36 T459]

            [*James Taylor drew up his will on the 4 November 1772 in which he made his son-in-law William Elgar, husband of his daughter Hannah, sole executor,  and left Hannah, her heirs and assignees all his lands, messuages etc.  He mentioned his grandchildren Thomas, Hannah, James Taylor and William children of the above William and Hannah Elgar.  James Taylor died in 1787 and probate was granted to William Elgar on the  2 November.  On the

15 September 1812 administration of James Taylor’s will was passed to his son William Elgar on the death of his father]


1783    11th and 20th of July 1783 and by an endorsement 24th January 1784 the buildings and premises with their and every appurtenances belonging and also all those certain pieces or parcels of land arable, meadow and pasture containing 15 acres in the parish of Penshurst Kent theretofore in the tenure or occupation of Oliver Stidolph and late of his son William and also all that part or parcel of meadow, ground in the parish of Penshurst commonly called or know by the name Ffulling Mill Island containing 4 acres one rood and 32 perches late also in the tenure or occupation of the said William Stidolph and also all that small piece or parcel of land to the south east of Ffulling Mill Island and being separated by the River Medway also in the occupation of William Stidolph with all the Engines, Screw Presses, Vats wheels utensils and implements in and about the aforesaid mill and premises and used in the business of Paper Making situate lying and being on the south east of Ffulling Mill Island the same being separated by the River Medway and are (?) and assured etc. [CKS ref: U36 T459]

            The release upon trust to sell - Mr Robert Crossley by the direction of William Stidolph to

 Mr Taylor and others dated 12 July 1783.  
Directed by the within named Robert Crossely and from the other named William Stidolph the consideration or sum of £1060 pounds within mentioned and for which the said Robert Crossley given a receipt on the back of the Indenture of Assignment within mentioned to bear date the day at one before the day of the date of the within written Indenture.
Witnessed Thomas Bowdler and George Lindgard
Received upon the day of the date of the within written Indenture by the within named Thomas Horton of and for the within named William Stidolph the consideration or sum of £240 within mentioned to be by them to be paid.
Signatories: Jer Cheveley Geo Lingard John Gamman and Chas Fletcher
Sealed and delivered by the within named Robert Crossley, Stephen Woodgate, James Taylor and Thomas Swayne in the presence of Tho Bowdler and George Lindgard.
[on the back of 9 sheets of Indenture]
Mary Horton Seven Oaks Kent, widow and sole executrix concerned in the last will and testament of Thomas Horton. Clement Horton of the Tower of London (eldest of the two sons)  gentleman and William Horton of Sevenoaks School Master.
So Thomas Horton died on 11 July 1783
Indenture dated 24 January 1784     .

[CKS ref: U36 T459]

1784    28 December 

Wm 2 Hamlin   Wm & Elizth Stidolph were baptised at Penshurst - this appears to be the last entry for William Stidolph in the registers.           

            [Transcripts of Penshurst PR’s at Sevenoaks Library]


1785    Précis:  The deed ran on as Stidolph borrowed another £200 and then by 1 June 1785

he owed £1,060 and no more plus interest, £240 and no more plus interest and a

further sum of £340 and no more plus interest.

Penal sums of £1,400 and £700 + interest at 5% per annum

Other creditors listed [all amounts plus interest]

Stephen Monkton of Brenchley Yeoman                                                           £200

Costs to Robert Sharp and Jane Sharp of Sevenoaks blacksmith                       £ 30

Piggot of Brasted widow                                                                                   £110

Richard Cossum of Hastings                                                                             £280

Wooden of Otford butcher                                                                               £100

John St or k or h Riverhead Sevenoaks malster                                                 £110

James Morris of Tonbridge gentleman                                                               £100

John Still Chiddingstone                                                                                    £ 80

James Richardson of Withyham Sussex                                                             £ 18

William Poorless of Rotherfield Sussex fellmonger                                             £ 14

Thomas Stooind Tonbridge gentleman                                                               £ 10

            The following description appears in the deeds:

‘in the paper mills two engines with a large water wheel  2 cog wheels  2 swain wheels lead pipes and brass corks and gear complete one stuff chest brick and lead  one ditto   two large vats with frou potto  complete  eight presses with iron screws complete one iron stove and funnels one sizing copper and iron work thereto belonging and fixed in the lofts and drying houses all the treble sides standard standers and lines complete and all the implements utensils and fixtures now being on the same premises  [……] said engines iron presses vats wheels utensils implements and premises

the solicitors also have to take out or continue fire insurance at £3,000

As a result of the accumulation of debt William Stidolph was forced into bankruptcy   .

[CKS ref: U36 T459]            


1785/7 Penhurst Rates:

Occupier late Wm Stidolph Mill Island £6 Rate  assessment 2/0d

            Wm Stidolph or Occupier Rate  £100 assessment £1/13/4d

            [Ref:  CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1785    Tuesday 8 March - Saturday 12 March  London Gazette

            Commission of Bankruptcy against William Stidolph of Chafford Mill in the parish of Penshurst, Co. of Kent, Paper Maker Dealer & Chapman to appear 19 March at 11 o'clock   26 Mach 10 o'clock and 23 April next at 5 o'clock in the afternoon at the Guildhall London and make a full discovery and disclosure of his Estate & Effects when and where the creditors are to come and prove their debts, at the second sitting to choose assignees and at the last sitting the said bankrupt is required to finish his examination and the creditors are to assent or dissent for the Allowance of his certificate.    All persons indebted to the said bankrupt or to have any of his effects are not to pay or deliver the same but to whom the Commissioners shall appoint but give notice to Mr Berry Canterbury Square Southwark


1785    Penshurst Rates   

            Occupier late Wm Stidolph Mill Island Rate £6 assessment 2/0d

            Wm Stidolph or Occupier Rate £100 assessment £1/13/4d

            Thos Woodhams was paying for late Stidolphs Rate £11 assessment £1/7/0d

            [Ref:  CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1785    June    Gentlemans Magazine 

Stidolph Wm Chafford Mill, Kent Papermaker bankrupt


1785    Saturday 10 December - Tuesday 13 December     London Gazette

            William Stidolph hath in all things confirmed to the directions of the several Acts of Parliament concerning bankrupts and his certificate will be allowed and confirmed


1786    1 July  Morning Post & Daily Advertiser            In the auction announcements

            Chafford Paper Mill by Mr Skinner & Co

On Wednesday 12th July at 12 o’clock at Garraway’s Coffee House, Grange Alley, London

in one lot immediate possession given

            A very desirable freehold estate advantageously situated in the Parish of Penshurst adjoining the Turnpike Road 4 miles from Tunbridge Wells and 34 from London  comprising an exceedingly good and  convenient  double paper mill, worked by a never failing stream branching from the River Medway and by an excellent spring sufficient to work both vatts in the dry season with every useful building and messuages attached

            A genteel dwelling house lately erected and neatly fitted up with suitable offices and gardens situate on an eminence commanding beautiful prospects and 20 acres of very good meadow and pasture land

            To be viewed 10 days preceding the sale when particulars may be had on the premises at the Rose and Crown Tunbridge Town, White Hart Sevenoaks Common at the place of sale and of Mr Skinner & Co Aldersgate Street.

            [British Library ref:  Burney Catalogue 769.b]


1786    London Gazette Tuesday 10 October - Saturday 14 October

            The Creditors who have proved their Debts under a Commission of Bankrupt awarded against William Stidolph late of  Chafford Mill in the Parish of Penshurst Kent are desired to meet the assignees of the said bankrupt on the 18 October at 6 o'clock in the afternoon at the Kings Head Tavern Bridgefoot Southwark


1786-   Land Tax Assessment Penshurst Town and Upland

1788    Proprietor was Occupier late W Stidolph  with just occupier rent 4.0d ¼ly assessment 16.0d


1787    Penshurst Rates 

            Wm Stidolph or occupier for Mill Island                         Rate £6 assessment                 1/6d

            John Woodhams for pt Chafford                                    Rate £4 assessment                  1/0d 

            John Woodhams for Chafford                                        Rate £96 assessment             £1.4.0d

            Occupier late Wm Stidolph Houses Paper Mill Island    Rate £100 assessment          £1.5.0d

[Ref:  CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1787    2 November

            James Taylor, one of the parties to the Indenture dated 12 July 1783 died.  His will was proved to the sole executor,

            his son-in-law William Elgar* a grocer of Maidstone.

            [*1798    Lease (of lease and release, release missing) parties (1) William Elgar of Maidstone, Grocer and wife Hannah, daughter of James Taylor formerly of Horton Kirby late of Kingsdown deceased (ii) Thomas Fry of Wrotham, yeoman, property called Great Brickhills and Little Brickhills (11 acres) ? acres) at Sandling in Boxley, Broomfields in Wilmington (8 acres) , land in Dartford Salt Marsh (1 acres) Mays Lane alias Chalk Orchard in Wilmington (2 acres) 6 acres in Darent Wood, Darenth including Coopers Sole or Mount, Darenth and orchard called Styleway (4 acres) in Wilmington.

 [Medway ref: 05 de Series 0501 0750/DEO727]


1788    Land Tax Assessment Penshurst  Hall Borough

            Mr Taylor & Mr Swain owners and occupiers paying 0.18 rent assessment 1.16.0


1788    20 February    Mr Swayne and Mr Elgar Agreement    Articles of Agreement
Between Thomas Swayne of Tonbridge Gentleman and William Elgar of Maidstone executor of the last will and testament of James Taylor
Précis from Deed ‘To put up for sale by public auction [before the 6th date of March] in pursuance of the directions for that purpose (/) in and by the said trust deeds and also shall and will on or before the 22nd day of the same month of March execute at the expense of the purchaser to such person or persons as shall or may happen to become the purchaser thereof … be settled by Mr Fenton…said estate shall be advertised by Thomas Swayne for public sale by auction twice in the Maidstone Journal and three times in the Kentish Gazette and London Evening Post and that said estate and premises shall be put up for public sale at the Bell in Maidstone on Thursday the 6th of March next at 12 noon by the said Thomas Swayne or some person on his behalf at the sum of £1400 and that in case no person shall not bid more for the same the said William Elgar shall be adjudged purchaser thereof at that price.
Elgar is also allowed to match any outside bids providing he covers costs and charges as well.
- looks as if there is still a loan of £3,000 on Mill.
- or Thomas Swayne borrowing this sum of Thomas Elgar?
- or binding each other perhaps to run the mill together?

            Copy of Auction particulars below in which  the Paper Mill is referred to as Chafford Paper Mills - double paper mill.

            [CKS ref: U36 T459]

1788        Thursday 6 March at noon

            Sale by Auction at the Bell Inn Maidstone of Chafford Paper Mills

To be viewed by applying to John Crundwell, near the Premifes; and further Particulars had, of Mr Bowdler, Attorney, at Tonbridge-Town

On the reverse

Mr Argles

I Thomas Swayne the seller of the within mentioned Estate and Premifses do hereby give you Notice that I have appointed Thomas Bowdler of Tonbridge Gent to bid at the Sale of the said Estate and Premifses for me   And I the said Thomas Bowdler do hereby give you Notice that I have agreed to bid accordingly   Witnefs our Hands the 6th day of March 1788.

Notice to Auctioneer of Power see attached

[CKS Ref  U36 T459]



1789    Penshurst Rates           

Messrs Damiza* or occupier for  Mill Island Rate  £6 assessment 2/0d. [this entry was under letter 'S' where previous entries for Stidolph had been listed]

            Rate  £94  assessment  £1.11.4d [Ref: CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]

            [*A George Demezar is listed as an employee in 1803 and he died aged 50 when of Chafford Mill and was buried at Penshurst 4/1/1818.  Another George appears in 1833 – so  it is possible that an earlier  family member was perhaps Mill Manager and was shown in the rates books.  Also between 1784 and 1786 in the London Directory A William Demezer Paper Manufacturer 75 Whitechapel is listed, (in 1786 Paper  Maker and Stationer). However he appears in the London Gazette  1789 May 17 - Thurs May 20 declared bankrupt and again April 9-11 William Demezer of Whitechapel Stationer & Dealer.]       


1789    Land Tax Assessment Penshurst Town & Upland and Hall Borough

            Owner Mr Ellgar Occupiers Mesrs Demeza & Stroud


1790    Land Tax Assessment Penshurst Town & Upland and Hall Borough

            Owner and Occupier Mr Ellgar


1791    Penshurst Rates   

            Mr Elgar Mill Island Rate          £6 assessment 2/0d   Mr Ellgar Rate £90 assessment £1.10.0d

            Mr  Thos Elgar Rate £6 assessment 3.0d

Mr Thos Elgar  Rate £90 assessment £2.5.0d [this presumably for the Mill]

[CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1791    Land Tax Assessment Penshurst Town & Upland and Hall Borough

            Owner & Occupier Mr Thos Elgar



1792    Penshurst Rates:

            Mr Willm Elgar Rate £90 assessment £1.2.6d

            Thos Woodhams still paying for Fordcombe & Mill Lane late Stidolph                                             

            Wm Woodham  Chafford Rate £96    assessment £1.4.0d

            Mr Wm Elgar Rate £6 assessment 1/6d [presumably this is for Fulling Mill Island]

            [CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1792    Universal Directory of Kent does not give any lists of inhabitants in Penshurst, Tonbridge or Tunbridge Wells


1794    Penshurst Rates:

            Mr Willm Elgar Rate £90 assessment £1.2.6d

            Thos Woodhams still paying for Fordcombe & Mill Lane late Stidolph                                             

            Wm Woodham  Chafford Rate £96   assessment £1.4.0d

            Mr Wm Elgar Rate £6    assessment 1/6d

            Thos Snatchall for part Chafford Rate £126 assessment £1.11.6d

            [CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1794    Between 1794 and 1801 The actual Land Tax documents for Penshurst Town & Upland and Hall Borough  bear “W Elgar” watermarks some with a date some without  - the latest found being on the 1801 assessment W ELGAR 1798.  These assessments are on separate sheets and I do not think that this proves that Elgar was still involved with the business after Turner took over Chafford 1796. [see appendix]


1796    Wove paper made by W.  Elgar, who controlled Chafford Mill has also been found dated 1796. 

            [Balston p 192 and watermark in Society of Antiquerus Sumptibus Vol IV plate VII

            8 July 1802]  [Papermaking in Britain 1488-1988 Richard L. Hills p.77]


1796    Jane Austen’s Letters collected and edited by Deirdre Le Faye 1995.

Notes to letters from p.355

Letter 3: To Cassandra Austen from London to Stevenson Tuesday 23 August 1796.

One leaf quarto wove. Watermark ELGAR & SON [written on both sides]

            Note at end ‘The device which appears on many of the letters of a coronet above an elaborate escutcheon up which a post-horn, sometimes with initials or monogram below (Heawood Nos 2752-63) was used by a number of different papermakers at the end of the eighteenth century.


1796    Penshurst Rates:

            Mr Wm Turner Rate £6 assessment 2/0d  


1796    Penshurst Land Tax

            Mr William Turner £4  rate 16.0d first appears [CKS Film 124]


1796    William Turner & Sons of Chafford : William Turner is listed attending a General Meeting of the Master Papermakers of Kent at the Star in Maidstone [Balston Papers JVS] No Elgar Listed


1796    William Turner was a master paper maker, Meeting of Paper Makers of Kent and Surrey

            (25 Feb 1796) PSM (Papers from Springfield Mill*).  The mill was in his hands after 1800

                [*Springfield Mill was built by William Balston (foundling apprentice of James Whatman II) during 1805 -1807. Balston always thought that Whatman would leave Turkey Mill to him but in 1794, disillusioned by endless problems with the workforce, Whatman sold to the Hollingworth brothers but with a partnership position for Balston. However, Balston fell out with the brothers and started to build a mega mill on the Springfield site. William Balston was Chair at many of the union meetings.   [Information from Maureen Barcham Green]


1796    Account taken from the diaries of Joshua Gilpin published in the Quarterly, October 1996 No2 about his visit to paper mills in Kent, 1796. 

            Apparently, he visited William Turner on (Saturday) 12 March 1796.

            “B.Rotch and J Field went to Tonbridge.  After bread fast called on Piper, Shewed me a plan of Smith mill [and] elevation of the engines etc. Called on William Turner, mould maker. Saw a number of moulds.  Same as usual but strengthened in the middle by a brass wire running through the ribs one end to the other.  Did not see [Turner] himself but left word about his prices.  I find that 54 inch felting cuts very well for larger Post and medium may be cut lengthways of the stuff and one width makes 3 folds wide.”

            [Information from Maureen Green: These diaries are in Pennsylvania Historical Museums Commission, Harrisbury PA USA; Division of Archives and Museums. Joshua Gilpin ‘Journal and Notebooks’ 1790-1801.  Apparently he returned in 1811-14.]


1798    Penhurst Rates

            Mr Wm Turner Rate  £70.12 assessment £1.3.6d

            [Ref:  CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1798-  There is a gap in the Penshurst Rates between these dates but not in the land tax assessments

1802    where William Turner is shown paying tax


1798    Land Tax Sheet for East Malling for 1798 had hallmark  ELGAR & SON


1799    12 June          

            William Turner is listed at a General Meeting of Master Paper Makers at the George & Vulture Tavern Cornhill London [Ref: JVS]


1800    William Turner attended the ‘General Provincial Meeting of Master Papermakers’ held at the Star Inn in Maidstone.

             [Box B Maidstone Museum  Ref: JVS]


c1801  Turners Papers 1798-1820 by Peter Bower

            Blair Atholl looking towards Kiliecranke

            White wove drawing paper watermark W ELGAR 1796


1802    Kent Poll Book  [GH]

            William Turner  Penshurst

            John Green  Speldhurst


1802-4 Penshurst Rates:

            Mr Wm Turner Mill Island Rate £6 assessment 6/0d  

            Mr Wm Turner Rate  £70.12 assessment £3.10.7d

            [Ref:  CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1800-7William Turner is paying land tax in Ashurst


1803/4   William Turner attended the ‘General Provincial Meeting of Master Papermakers’ held at the Star Inn in Maidstone. [Balston Papers ref:  JVS]


1803    19 September  

At a general Meeting of the Master Paper Makers held at the Bell Inn Maidstone it  was resolved that the names of the workmen employed at

the different Mills in the County, prior to the Ninth July last, be immediately transmitted to the Chairman, in order for their being printed and circulated.

[Balston Papers: Ref: JVS]


1803    22 September  Letter from Chafford Mill


            I have enclosed the names of those men who were in my employ prior to the 9th July last

            I am    yr obd    serv t      Wm  Turner

            Thos Hews:     Jn Neal:     Rob t Hunt:  Wm Storm: Thos Fisher:  Geo Clear: Edw Franklin,

            Geo Demiezer:  Geo French:    Wm Vanil:  Wm Constable:  John Childs:  Jms Heath.

            [Balston Papers: Ref: JVS]


1805/6 Land Tax Assessments for Penshurst bear watermark W TURNER 1802


1806-   Penshurst Rates: Mr Wm Turner   Rate £195     assessment varied from £2+ - £7+ 

1811    [CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1811    8 November Land Tax Assessment for Penshurst Town & Upland bears watermark

            W TURNER & SON


1812    William Turner attended the ‘General Provincial Meeting of Master Papermakers’ held at the Star Inn in Maidstone. [Balston Papers JVS]


1812    8 October George William Turner eldest son of William Turner of this Town papermaker and Freeman of the Corporation (Maidstone) desired to be made free by his father’s copy - was made free by patrimony  6d fine [CKS Film 569]


1812    8 October William Turner a younger son of William Turner of this Town papermaker and Freeman of the Corporation desired to be made free by his father’s copy - was made free by patrimony  40s fine [CKS Film 569]


1812    The Nottinghamshire Archive Office holds correspondence of the United Company of Framework Knitters which was formed in 1812

            to campaign for legislation to improve conditions in the hand operated knitting industry.

            The collection contains 112 letters dated between February and August 1812.   One with countermark  W TURNER & SON  wove  Leicester  6 

            [BAPH Quarterly 2    p7 Glenys Crocker] [NAO ref: CA3984/I/1-179 In Jan 2005 they were unable to locate which letter had the watermark].  


1812-   Penshurst Rates:

1816    Mr Wm Turner  Rate £190    assessment varied from £2+ - £9+ 

            [see appendix  [CKS  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]


1813    Watermark G & R Turner 1813            [CKS  KAO P 173 5/2 part II]

            G & R Turner marks are rare but have been found in Cotman & Bonington drawings.

            [Balston p.289 JV]       (John Sell Cotman 1782-1842 and Richard Parkes Bonington 1802-28)     


1813    Jane Austen’s Letters* collected and edited by Deirdre Le Faye 1995.

Notes to letters from p.355

            Letter 94: To Cassandra Austen from Godmersham to London Tuesday 26 October 1813

            Two leaves quarto laid watermark W.TURNER & SON 1810: red wax seal with impression of ship.

            Postmarks A 27 Oc 27 1813 Faversham 47. [Pierpont Morgan Library New York (ref MA 2911)]

                [*Jane Austen’s Letters collected and edited by Deirdre Le Faye 1995

Note at the end – The device which appears on many of the letters of a coronet above an elaborate escutcheon up which a post-horn, sometimes with initials or monogram below (Heawood Nos 2752-63) was used by a number of different papermakers at the end of the eighteenth century – including some of those names above.]


1813    Jane Austen’s Letters collected and edited by Deirdre Le Faye 1995.

Notes to letters from p.355

            Letter 95: To Cassandra Austen Godmersham to London Wednesday 3 November 1813

            Two leaves quarto laid. Watermark W TURNER & SON 1810 small red wax seal design not clear.

            [Pierpont Morgan Library New York ref MA 977-34)]


1813    Jane Austen’s Letters collected and edited by Deirdre Le Faye 1995.

Notes to letters from p.355

            Letter 96: To Cassandra Austen Godmersham to London Saturday 6 – Sunday 7 November 1813

            Two leaves quarto laid watermark  W TURNER & SONS 1810

            [Pierpont Morgan Library New York ref MA 977 – 35]


1814    Jane Austen’s Letters collected and edited by Deirdre Le Faye 1995.

Notes to letters from p.355

            Letter 107: To Anna Austen from Chawnton to Steventon Friday 9 – Sunday 18 September 1814

            Two leaves quarto, wove watermark W TURNER & SON  no date

            [MS St Johns College 279]


1815    Jane Austen’s Letters collected and edited by Deirdre Le Faye 1995.

Notes to letters from p.355

            Letter 124: To John Murray from London Hans Place to London Albermarle Street Friday 3 November 1815

            One leaf quarto wove watermark W TURNER & SON no date

            [CKS Chevening Collection U1590/C.474/Autograph Letters Miscellaneous - as at 2005 this had been returned to the Chevening Archive]


1815    Jane Austen’s Letters collected and edited by Deirdre Le Faye 1995

Notes to letters from p.355

            Letter No 125A  To Jane Austen from London Carlton House to London Hans Place Thursday 16 November 1815.

            Two leaves quarto wove watermark W TURNER & SON no date p4 blank accompanied by remains of wrapper part of folded quarto sheet Postmark Two by post unpaid Jermyn St

            10 o’clock 16 No 1815 F.Nn    [Pierpont Morgan Library New York ref MA 103-10 & 11]


1816    William Turner is listed attending a Meeting of the Master Papermakers of Kent at the  Star in Maidstone [Balston Papers JVS]


1816    William Turner was the proprietor and master paper maker at this mill

            (Excise General Letters 8 October 1816)  [To date these letters not located TNA]


1815-   James Roberts, David Hollomby, Thomas Knellar, William Davis are listed as of Chafford Papermakers 1819 in the Penshurst Baptism Registers.

1819    [Original registers seen at the Parish Church of  St.John the Baptist Penshurst]


1816    8 October :When the allocation of Excise numbers were being made to paper mills William Turner, paper maker, of Chafford,

            received the number 389 and his mill was placed in the Sussex Collection* [Excise General letters 8 Oct]

            [*Information from the Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library, London.

This is a huge collection of cuttings and the like, that H.E.S Simmons collected over a lifetime.  The information runs into something

like 40 volumes of photocopies, arranged geographically.]   


1817    October : Change of occupation at Mill no 389 at Chafford in the Sussex Collection.  Present occupiers G. W. & R Turner, Paper Makers

             [Excise General letter 8 Oct] ][Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1818    Maidstone  15 June  

            At this Court Richard Turner a younger son of William Turner papermaker and freeman of the Corporation desired to be made free by his father’s copy 40s fine  (free by patrimony) [CKS film 569]


1818    There are surviving records for the Kent Manor or Hundred of Somerden dating from

            1713-1833 but there was no mention of either Stidolph/Elgar/Turner until 1818 when

            Richard Turner first appears in a list ‘Inquisition for the King’

            [Sevenoaks Library Ref: U1000/9/M14-16]


1818/   Penshurst Rates: 

1819    Wm Turner Rate £120. assessment £3.0.0d

            Turner George & Rd for Mill  Rate  £70   assessment £1.15.0d  

            [see appendix 11]  [CKS Film


1820    Paper machine producing 36” paper was built  [was this installed at Chafford ?]

            [Arjo Wiggins Archive]


1821    May Penshurst Population Account                                                   

            Wm Turner Papermaker 4 males 3 females

            3 males between 20-30 one between 50-60 l female 15-20 1 between 20-30 and

            1 between 50-60 : The following men were listed as papermakers

            Wm Davis, Thomas Hands, James Ovenden, John  Piper, James Roberts, James Reddy,

            John Ovenden, Thos.Bloodworth, John Gillett, Henry Dry and David Hollamby, Barbary Davis, John Parson, Thos Allcorn

            [CKS P287/18/15/2]


 1822   Penshurst Rates:

            Wm Turner Rate £80   assessment £2  

            Turner Geo & Richd  £47  £1.3.6d

            Land Tax Assessment for Penshurst Hall Borough bears watermark G & R TURNER 1821


1825/6 Penshurst Rates:

            Turner Willm £80.  Turner George & Rd   Rate  £47. assessment £1.3.6d

             [Ref:  CKS ]


1826    3rd April         

            Richard Turner and Eliza Edwards were granted a marriage Licence (Arch of Lewes Marriage Licences) they were married

            at Withyham East Sussex on 11 April 1826. the copy from ESRO is very poor and I cannot read the witnesses


1822-   John Anthony, George Mawcumber, Mesheck Nash and Thomas Alcorn are shown as employed at the

1828    Paper Mill in the Penshurst Baptism Registers.[Registers seen at the Church]


1828    19 November 

William Turner aged 65 was buried at Penshurst  

            [Altar Top:  Sacred to the Memory of William Turner died 15 November 1827 aged 66 years

Elizabeth his widow died 12 January 1837 aged 79 years William son of the above of Chafford died 28 December 1858 aged 47 years North Side – Sarah the widow of David Edwards late of Withyam died 15 November 1842 aged 76 years  West End  Mary daughter of Richard and Mary Turner of Chafford in the Parish died September 1832 aged 9 months  South Side  David Edwards late of Withyam in Sussex died 11 July 1836 aged 53 years.]


1829    23 May          

            On the twenty third day of May admon of the goods and chattels and credits of William Turner late of Penshurst in Kent Paper Maker deceased was granted to Elizabeth Turner widow the relict  £1.500

            [Prob 6/205 pp179-250][there was no mention of William Turner in the index to Inland Revenue documents IR27/211 1829 ]


1829/   Penshurst Rates:

1830    Turner Messrs  Rate £173.5.0d   assessment £4.6.7½d   [CKS Film 124]


1828-   Penshurst Land Tax 

1831    Turner Messrs George & Richd themselves [CKS Film 124]


1829/   London Post Office Directory

1830        G & R Turner paper manufacturers St James Place Bermondsey


1830    Emily Turner daughter of Richard and Eliza born at Bermondsey according to 1851 census - does not appear baptised at Penshurst.


1830    Friday June 18th.        London Gazette

            Notice is hereby given that the partnership heretofore existing between us the undersigned, George William Turner and Richard Turner carrying on a business as paper manufacturers under the firm G & R Turner at Chafford, in the Parish of Penshurst, in the County of Kent, and at Bermondsey, in the County of Surrey, but which business at Bermondsey was in fact the sole property of the said George William Turner, was on the 11 day of June dissolved by mutual consent.  The debts due to and from the said partnership, in respect of the business at Chafford, will be received and paid by said Richard Turner who will continue the business there on his separate account.  The business at Bermondsey will be carried on by said George William Turner on his own account, separately as heretofore, and all debts due in respect of thereof will be received and paid by him.

            Dated 15 June 1830


1830    18 October  Arabella Eliza daughter of Richard Turner Paper Manufacture & Eliza

            was born she was baptised at Penshurst 2 June 1831 [CKS DR6/RT2/287/1-4 BT's Penshurst]

            She married Henry Warden in 1848 who owned Chafford Mill from 1868.


1931-   Penshurst Rates: 

1834    Turner Richd    Rate £173.5.0d.   assessment £4.6.7½d


1830-   William Field, William Lucas, Thomas Horscroft, George Demeza, Thomas Mullard and William Lucas are shown as Papermakers

1838    of Penshurst in the Penshurst Baptism Registers [seen at the Church].


1831    Turner’s Later Papers  A Study and Use of his Drawing Papers 1820-1851  by Peter Bower 1999  Chapter on White Papers p 55

A Collection of sketchbooks used by Turner on his 1831 tour of Scotland

TBCCLXXI  Loch Long    Blue wove paper covered boards, foolscap octavo (6 ¼ x 4) containing three folded sheets of an off-white double-faced laid writing paper watermarked Britannia and countermarked W TURNER 1828.  Made by William Turner at Chafford Mills, Fordcombe Kent (see also Gandolpho to Naples Sketchbook (TBCLXXXIV) for another example of William Turner’s  paper used by Turner). There is no evidence that William Turner ever supplied stationers other than in London and the home counties.


1831    Mr. Turner, an English paper-maker, obtained a patent for a peculiar strainer, designed to arrest the lumps mixed with the finer paper-pulp, whereby he could dispense with the usual vat and hog in which the pulp is agitated immediately before it is floated upon the endless wire web of the Fourdrinier apparatus. It could also be applied advantageously to hand paper machines.

 Munsell, J., 'Chronology of the Origin and Progress of Paper and Paper-making' (New York; London: Garland Publishing House Inc., 1980), p.93. Munsell was originally published circa 1860s.(MG)


1831    21 March     Patent        Turner George William 6095 Machine for making paper

            A grant unto George William Turner of the Parish of Saint Mary Magdalen Bermondsey in the County of Surrey paper maker. For his invented or found out ‘certain improvements in machinery or apparatus for making paper’. England & Wales and the town of Berwick on Tweed

            [TNA C73/38  This was a close roll of several yards! I did not read it but seemed to be about a sieve – would cost at least £14 to photocopy and this did not include the two plans – in the same roll there was a patent for J Edward Newman Fourdrinier for cutting paper]


1831    Pigots London Directory  under Paper Makers and Paper Warehouse Wholesale

            Turner William & George Blue Anchor Mill, Blue Anchor Lane and Fountain Mill Fountain Stairs Bermondsey


1831-   Pigots London Post Office Directory

1834    G.W. Turner paper manufacturers Fountain Mills Bermondsey


1832    Penshurst Land Tax [CKS Film 124]

            Turner Richd himself


1831        7 August

            Mary Agnes Turner daughter of Richard Paper Manufacturer & Eliza was baptised at Penshurst - she was buried aged 8 months on 29 September

            [CKS DR6/RT2/287/1-4 BT's Penshurst]


1832        Check list issued 28 Nov 1832 – Mill No 389 [Chafford] was in the Tunbridge Wells 2 Ride of the Sussex Collection,

            but its location and occupier are not stated.

            [Excise General Letters] [Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1833    Alfred Lord Tennyson used plain white wove paper, watermarked: R.Turner / Chafford Mills

            to draft some of his poems*. [In memoriam, fragments (E.T.)] [n.p.,n.d.} 10f. (19p.)

            [Tennyson, Alfred Tennyson, Baron 1809-1892. Papers: Guide – Houghton Library Harvard College Library,  MS Eng 952.1 / 101  Loose Papers]

                [*‘The paper in the folder (101) is watermarked as described in the finding-aid; there are ten sheets measuring 23 cm. wide and 18.5 cm. tall;
each sheet folded in half to make four pages 11.5 cm wide, and the first and third pages have a circular boss in the upper left-hand corner with a
crown in the middle and the words "London" above the crown and "Superfine" below it.
A penciled note (E.T.) indicates that this fragment is in Emily Tennyson's hand. It begins with the following stanza of "In Memoriam:"
Fair ship that from the Italian shore
Sailest the placid ocean plains
With my lost Arthur's loved remains
Spread thy full wings and waft him oer
The last stanza included in this fragment is:
Rise happy morn! rise holy morn!
Draw forth the cheerful day from night
O Father, touch the East and light
The light that shone when Hope was born
There is more information about the collection of Tennyson papers in the "Scope and Content" section of the finding-aid:
[Susan Halpert, Reference Librarian, Department of Public Services, HOUGHTON LIBRARY Harvard University]

1833    16 March :  Correction to General Letter of 28 Nov last.  Mill No 389 at Chafford in the Sussex Collection, Tunbridge Wells 2nd Ride.  Mill now occupied by Richard Turner Paper Maker [Excise General letter] [ Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1833        3 October

            Richard David Rains Turner son of Richard & Eliza Paper Manufacturer was baptised at Penshurst  [CKS DR6/RT2/287/1-4 BT's Penshurst]

            He later had Roughway Mill


1834    The Tunbridge Wells Visitor 20th September 1834

            On Wednesday morning, their Royal Highnesses the Duchess of Kent, and the Princess Victoria, attended by their suite, paid a visit to Mr Turner’s paper manufactory, at Chafford.  The weather being uncommonly fine, and the beauty of the scenery of the surrounding country, made the excursion more agreeable to the Royal party.  On their arrival, their Royal Highnesses were received by Mr Turner, Captain Cooper, and Mr Madden, M.C.  Their Royal Highnesses and suite, were then conducted into the different rooms, and the whole process of the manufactory was fully explained to them by Mr Turner, from its commencement to its completion. Their Royal Highnesses having expressed their admiration of the different papers offered to their inspection and more particularly of the coloured ones, the whole process of which they had witnessed. Mr Turner immediately requested they would do him the honour of accepting some of each. Prior to leaving the premises, Mr Turner respectfully solicited their Royal Highnesses would condescend to pass through his dwelling-house, which they most graciously acceded to; and on their entrance into the drawing-room , were received by Mrs. Turner, mother of Mr. Turner, an elderly lady, to whom her Royal Highness the Duchess of Kent, showed marked civility.  The party having partaken of some fruit, expressed the gratification their Royal Highnesses had received from the polite attention of Mr. Turner, they walked  through his pleasure grounds, and took their leave. On entering their carriage, a very fine specimen of Hop was presented by a gentleman to Her Royal Highness the Princess Victoria, with a request that she would accept it as the produce of a Kentish hop garden


1834    The Princess Victoria wrote in her Journal

            Wednesday 17th September

            At 10 we went to Mr Turner’s paper mill near Speldhurst with lady Flor, Lehzen, Lady Conroy, Victoire, The Dean of Chester and Sir J.C. [John Conroy]. It was very curious.  We came home at 1.

            [Ref: RA/VIC/QVJ/1834: May-November]


1835    Kent Poll Book

            Under Maidstone:  Turner George William St Mary Magdalen Bermondsey. 

            Under Penshurst :   Turner Richard Penshurst


1835    Freeman List of Maidstone:

            George William Turner free 8/10/1812              London   Birth

            William Turner free 8/10/1812                          Penshurst  Birth

            Richard Turner free 15/6/1818                          Penshurst   Birth


1935    Critchett London Directory

Turner & Davey paper manufacturers Fountain Mills Bermondsey


1835    5 May George William Turner Paper Manufacturer of Fountain Mills, Bermondsey Wall, London bankrupt [JVS] No reference found in the London Gazette giving the above full address but found entries below:   


1835    Tuesday 5th May        London Gazette

            Bankruptcy awarded against George William Turner and Henry Davey of Bermondsey in the County of Surrey Paper Manufacturers, Dealers and Chapman they being declared bankrupt hereby required to surrender themselves to Charles Frederick Williams 12 May at Ten and on the 16 June next at 12 noon and make a full disclosure of their estates and effects, when and where the creditors are to come there to prove their debts.


1835    Friday  15th May        London Gazette

            The creditors who have proved their debts against George William Turner and Henry Davey of Bermondsey in the County of Surrey Paper Manufacturers are requested to meet the assignees Saturday 6th June next at 11 a.m. at the Court of Bankruptcy in Basinghall Street.


1835    Tuesday 18th August London Gazette

            Whereas the Commissioner acting in the prosecutions of a Fiat bankruptcy against George William Turner and Henry Davey of Bermondsey in the County of Surrey Paper Manufacturers hath certified to the Right Hon Lord Commissioners that the said George William Turner hath in all things conformed himself according to the directions of the Act of parliament………             The certificate of the said George William Turner will be allowed and confirmed by the Court of Review 8th September next.


1835    Tuesday 18th October London Gazette

            Charles Frederick Williams one of his Majesties Commissioners for bankruptcy bearing date 1st May 1835 against George William Turner and Henry Davey of Bermondsey in the County of Surrey Paper Manufacturers, Dealers and Chapman will sit on the 5th day November next at 12 noon at the Court of Bankruptcy at Basinghall Street, London.



            This watermark is in a paper in the collection of the late E.J.Labarre, Hilversun [Holland]

            1836 (date of document) Paper-Maker, Richard Turner Chafford Mill, Kent.

            Alfred Shorter (1971) p 251 ref  Original Papermakers recorder March 1902.

            Labarre produced the Dictionary of Paper Making [Contacted the University of Amsterdam

            and although they have most of his books etc did not seem to know anything about his original manuscript collection]


1837    The list of English, Scotch & Irish Paper Makers [NPM/DIR]

            London No 1: Mill No 117 Turner & Co  Blue Anchor Lane Bermondsey

            Sussex  Mill No 390 G & R Turner Chafford


1837    From The Report from the Select Committee on FOURDRINIER’S PATENT’ with the Minutes of Evidence, and Appendix Printed 1 June 1837.

            George Turner gave evidence regarding use of the Fourdrinier which indicates that the Turner’s were using one at Chafford.

            Clapperton. R.H., The Paper-making Machine, Its Invention, Evolution and Development,

            (Oxford:The Pergamon Press, 1967), p. 291

            'Another witness was George Turner, paper-maker, who said that although it was claimed that

             the Fourdrinier machine would do the work of five hand-made vats, it was capable of doing

             seven vat's work, and he frequently did this amount in his own mill.'

            George Turner was speaking on the behalf of the Fourdrinier family who were instrumental in

            the development of the paper-making machine. They went bankrupt in a big way and the

            paper-making fraternity petitioned parliament in order to gain recognition for their work and a

            state pension for surviving members of the family. The enquiry by The Select Committee of

            the House of Commons was held on the 9th of May, 1837.


1837    Nottinghamshire Archives:

            Papers of Thomas Musgrave (1788-186) Edge of Strelley [DD/E/194-DD/E/222]  Chiefly correspondence :

            Ref. DD/E/215/24 dated 10 August 1837 Watermark :  R. Turner, Chafford Mill 1835.


1838    13 September  Richard and George William’s brother William Turner (40) no occupation died at Peckham House - cause debility.

            Informant Benjm Carrington, Resident Surgeon Peckham House* [death certificate].

            He was buried at Penshurst on the 18 September William Turner aged 47 of the District of Camberwell.

            [CKS DR6/RT2/287/1-4 BT's Penshurst][No will found]

                *Peckham House, the former mansion of the Spitta family which later became a lunatic asylum, was demolished in 1954 London Encyclopaedia] [Peckham House,

Peckham licensed to Dr Armstrong appears in a list of Metropolitan Licensed Houses 1870 – 24th Report of Commissioners in Lunacy – pp XXXIV]


1840s  R TURNER PATENT TALBOTYPE watermark, produced for Fox Talbot in the 1840s. Other Turner watermarks found in papers used by photographers include R TURNER CHAFFORD MILLS 1840 (John Muir Wood),             PHOTOGRAPHIC R TURNER CHAFFORD MILLS (Robert Murray) and R TURNER 1847 (Samuel Smith)

            [BAPH Quarterly No 22 April 1997 Calotype papers and Richard Turner of Chafford Mills by Colin Osman][Although there was reference to a patent entered by Fox Talbot I could not see any mention of Turner in the index of patentees at the TNA at this date]


1841        London Trades Directory under Papermakers & Warehouses there is a Fountain Mills listed in Bermondsey     

            [Checked 1841 census Fountain Street, Bermondsey – Boyds Rope Walk -There was a papermaker but not Turner [HO107/1048/40-41]

            Also Papermill Cottage & House part of Blue Anchor Lane but could not identify anyone  listed with a paper linked occupation].


1841    6 June Census: Richard Turner(40) Paper Manufacturer listed at Chafford


1842    26 May Penshurst Railway Station was opened


1843    Board of Inland Revenue Miscellaneous papers 1843-46

            There was an account showing total expenses incurred, whether for machinery or in any other way connected with the manufacture and printing of the Penny Postage Stamps & Envelopes 1840-42 in which there was no mention of Turner or Chafford.      [TNA IR79/3]


1843    March - June  Chafford received thirteen tons of rags barged from London to Tonbridge

            The cost of barging four deliveries of rags from ‘Port of London to Tonbridge’ was £6 4s 0d.

            Other transport costs are recorded , 13th April – 14 bales and one bag of hide pieces (for making size) weighing 1 ton 3 cwt 2 qr 24 lbs, cost of barging was 11s 10d; 4th May – one ton of guano, the cost of barging including London charges was 14s.

            [MALSC Medway Navigation Accounts  financial miscellaneous ledger 1828-44 SMN FL27 p.131]

            Chafford & Roughway paper Mills, the Turners and the Transvaal  by Jeff Woolgar

            The Transvaal Philatelist v.39 No 3 (151) August 2004


1843    Children’s Employment Commission Reports 1843 Second Report to the Commissioners on Trades and Manufactures vol .9-11 of the British Parliamentary papers, reprinted by the Irish University Press in 1968 :

            Mr Turner, Chafford Mill, near Tunbridge Wells (4 interviews)

            No 85  William Nash, aged 12 years. Can read and write a little. Been here four months Employed glazing paper, stand to my work.  Come to work at five o’clock in the morning, sometimes at six, leave off at six and five, sometimes seven o’clock in the evening.  Allowed half an hour for breakfast, and half an hour for dinner. Eat meals here, cooked at home and warmed over the boiler. Paid by the time, one penny an hour; earn a week sometimes 4s, sometimes 5s. Sometimes tired with work; now and then we change work, when I take out the sheets from between the rollers. Have pretty good health; when we first comes it makes us rather bad from being so hot; well used. Like my situation very well. Hired and paid by the foreman. Can’t write well enough to sign my name.


            No 86 George Mullard, aged 13 Can read and write a little  I don’t attend school now, did a little while before I came to work here. Been here two years about next Easter. Meals, work, pay, hiring &c same as last boy. Sometimes rather makes my arms ache taking out the sheets. Haven’t been well lately, but do not think it is the work. Well treated; when hurt by machinery Mr Turner finds medicine, and not when ill by ourselves. About three years ago I was hurt, by my thigh being caught in a wheel.

            [BAPH The Quarterly 42 May 2002 Transcribed by Tanya Schmoller]


1843    Extract about children at the Mill (Chafford) from Twentieth Century English Vat Paper Mills by Geoffrey Wakeman  The Plough Press, Loughborough., 1980. Small 4to, [viii],123pp., one of 102 numbered copies, presentation inscription from the author, with the neat bookplate of the dedicatee, 31 offset litho illustrs., (reproductions of photographs, drawings, documents and water-marks) tipped-in on stubs, more samples of paper inserted in a pocket at the rear, orig. quarter blue morocco, spine lettered in gilt (slightly faded), Cockerell marbled paper sides, uncut. This book gives short accounts of fourteen English mills which were still making paper by hand in 1900.

“Nine years later (1843) Sophy Parker, aged 16, worked there as a rage cutter from 8 am – 6pm for 9d a day or about 4/6d a week with 3d for beer. William Nash 12 years old and George Mullard 13 worked twelve hours a day as glazers for 1d an hour. The girls were illiterate, the boys little better.  Most of them said they like working there. (Children’s Employment Commission Reports 1843)  Work on the glazing rolls was relatively hazardous. George Mullard was caught in a wheel when he was 10 damaging his thigh. Aboy named Haffenden had a finger amputated while cleaning some machinery worked by steam in 1857. His brother had had a serious accident three years earlier (Haffenden. Sussex Advertiser Aug 11 1859)  Henry Ovenden a  workman, was caught in the idlers in 1860 (Ibid March 6 1860).


1844    Fordcombe – Chafford Colbran 1844

            ‘Chafford derives its name from a ford of early date across the Medway, which is here a considerable stream the principal object at this place is the paper manufactory of Mr R.Turner, which is well worth inspecting’

[Spicer A.D. 1907  The Paper Trade, A descriptive and historical survey of the paper trade from the commencement of the nineteenth century:

Methuen & Co.London p.185  Ref to Chafford p.185]


1845    Replies of Collectors of taxes cutting paper into half sheets Sussex Collections

            Richard Turner of Chafford Mill Papermaker Tunbridge Wells Mill No 389

            'Occasionally cuts a few reams of paper into half sheets but in this operation there is no waste and it is of no advantage

            to the papermaker or inconvenience to the officers

            [TNA Cust 119/182]


1847    Bagshaw Kent Directory

            Richard Turner Paper Maker Pounds Bridge Penshurst Parish


1847    British Watermarks: An Introduction to Watermarks in Early Postage and Fiscal Stamps

            1840-1900 by Peter Bower [BAPH Quarterly 23 July 1997]

            From 1847* R Turner & Co of Chafford Mills, Fordcombe, Kent  supplied paper for stamps, which were printed by Thomas De La Rue & Co.

            The VR and Garter watermarked papers were hand made until June 1864, with the first supply of machine made Garter paper being

            produced by Turner & Co in December 1864.  In 1879 Turner & Co transferred their postage stamp paper production to

            Roughway Mills, near Tonbridge, Kent.

            [The De La Rue History of British and Foreign Postage Stamps, London 1958, pages 44-50  Details of the contracts between De La Rue and Turner & Co can be found pp 98-101]           [There appeared no mention of Turner until 1853 in the Ormond Hill letter books at TNA]

                [*The earliest mention to Turner supplying paper in the Inland Revenue Records of Ormond Hill at the National Archive is in 1852.]


            Field Marshall Henry Hardinge 1st Viscount Lahore 3rd son Rev Henry born 30/5/1775 in Wrotham Ensign 1799 Queens Rangers


1848    The Illustrated London News 1st April 1848 p 220

            On Friday week, Lord Hardinge* laid the foundation-stone of a chapel-at-ease at Fordcombe in the Parish of Penshurst.

            The site chosen is a piece of land generously give for the purpose by Richard Turner of Chafford Papermills

            [*Field Marshall Henry Hardinge 1st Viscount Lahore 3rd son Rev Henry born 30/5/1775 in Wrotham Ensign 1799 Queens Rangers]


1848    Richard Turner first mentioned in the accounts of the ‘Original Society of Papermakers’             [JVS]


1850    A 42” paper machines was added  at Chafford  and was exhibited at the Great Exhibition

            [Arjo Wiggins] 1862 - George Bertram (co-founder of Sciennes Works) installed a machine at the Great Exhibition in London.

            But this went to Ivybridge Mill Devon (Mill 191)]


1850    Extract From a letter dated 25 May 1850 from Thomas Augustine Malone to H F Talbot Esq

            ‘It happens singularly that we have good news of the paper manufacture Mr Turner and his brother of Chafford mills (good makers) have been conversing with Henneman (Nicolaas Henneman 1813-1898, Dutch, active in England; WHFT’s valet, then assistant; photographer) & myself & some Amateurs his friends on the requisites for a good sheet of Photographic paper.  They have already made improvements & promise they will not rest until much more has been accomplished* .

            [Fox Talbot Museum/Lacock Abbey Collections Lacock: LA50-023 Correspondence of William Henry Fox Talbot, Fox Talbot Museum LA50-023 Doc Number 06326]

                [*CALOTYPE  Sometimes called the Talbotype after inventor William Henry Fox Talbot, this light-sensitive process  began under candlelight,

                when high-quality writing paper, selected for  its smooth and uniform texture, was washed with a solution of silver nitrate, dried, soaked in a solution of potassium iodide for two or three minutes, rinsed, and then dried again.  When ready to take a picture, the photographer would coat the iodized paper with a solution of silver nitrate and gallic acid, wait thirty seconds, dip the paper in water, partially dry it with blotting paper, and then, in near-total darkness, load it into a camera.  Following an exposure of about a minute in full sunlight, the paper would develop a latent image, which, after the application of a fresh solution of gallo-nitrate of silver in a wholly darkened room, would develop into a visible image within a few seconds.  When the development had proceeded far enough, the paper was washed over with a fixing liquid, sometimes a solution of potassium bromide and sometimes a solution of hypo (similar to modern fixers).  Washing and drying completed the process.  The resulting paper negative was usually waxed to increase its transparency and then contact printed onto paper that had been treated with a solution of sodium chloride and then brushed with silver nitrate.  Invented in 1840, the calotype was preceded the year before by Talbot’s photogenic drawing, which did not use gallic acid and therefore required a longer exposure time. [Catalogue ‘Ocean Flowers Impressions from Natural in the Victorian Era’ Yale Centre for British Art.]


1851        30 March

            Census: Richard Turner (54) born Maidstone Farmer & Paper Maker Master under Papermill Penshurst


1851    In the Parliamentary Return Chafford is entered along with Sharp’s (Barcombe, Sussex) as being the two paper mills within the Sussex Excise Collection area. It had seven beating engines, four at work, three silent (H.C.1852 LI)

            [Information Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1852     ‘1852 G.W. Turner, of London, improved the paper machine by the application of the endless wire-web in combination with and passing around the cylinder, and taking the pulp up from the vat, carrying it forward and submitting it to the action of dandy roller and pneumatic trough, taking the place of the fixed wire-web and endless felt, in the cylinder machine, and the wire-web upon which the pulp flows in the Fourdrinier machine. Also for a mode of passing the paper through a trough of size, between two endless felts, obtaining a uniform and thorough saturation.'

Munsell, J., 'Chronology of the Origin and Progress of Paper and Paper-making' (New York; London: Garland Publishing House Inc., 1980), p.93.Munsell was originally published circa 1860s.(MG)

                [There appears no mention of this in the index held at The National Archive to Patentees]


1852    Photocopy from the original in the possession of Grosvenor Chater Ltd

            Paper Mills in England, Scotland & Ireland lists Mill No 389 Richard Turner Chafford Tonbridge but no mention of George William in London [NPM SM20/28 Box 2]


1852-     Island of Philae, calotype by Robert Murray taken c 1852-54. The watermark down the right hand edge was the final

1854    ER of  TURNER followed by CHAFFORD MILLS

            [BAPH Quarterly No 22 April 1997 Calotype papers and Richard Turner of Chafford Mills by Colin Osman] 

            [Copy also in Egypt Caught in Time by Colin Osman published 1977]


1853    August 26th Extract from a letter referring to the new stamps

            ‘With reference to the adhesive stamps for Receipts, Drafts on Demand and Life Policies, I beg to report that Mr Richard Turner of Chafford Mills near Tonbridge Wells is preparing a supply of Anchor water-mark paper applicable to the production of each of these kind of stamps’.

            [IR42/13 p34 Board of Inland Revenue Secretary (Stamps) Postage Stamps

Journal or Drafting Book of Mr Ormond Hill of the Stamping Branch]


1854    Letter written on paper watermarked R TURNER CHAFFORD MILL 1854

Written by Joseph Haydn to his daughter Kate Maria (aged 13) (known as‘Tess’)

(25th was the only Monday in Sept at the time)  Admiralty, Whitehall

Monday, Sept 25

            My darling Tess

            I have not been able to go to the Treasury, where Mr Powell, the Solicitor to the Mint, has now his Chambers. This want of time may empress you, as the Treasury is, we may say, next door to the Admiralty, but please God! I will see about Grays Inn Gardens in a day or two.  You know you can bring as many young ladies as you like, and as often, to the private gardens in the Temple and the distance is not so very great.

            You will be rejoiced to hear that Henry has already been promoted at the Admiralty to something better than he had here at first, and in Mr Barrow’s own department, and sooner. We had a visit from a niece of mine, a young lady whom I did not see since she was a child. She and another young lady came in to us, most unexpectedly, on Saturday.  The former, of course, slept in that night with Mama, and on Sunday, yesterday, went by railway train to Windsor. She is also going to Winchester, but will return to London on Wednesday, and it is likely you will be in time to see her, when you pay us a visit on Friday afternoon, as she may stay with us a day or two. If so, you must bring her with you, when you come to see me at the Admiralty, as you have proposed, on Saturday, and she will have an opportunity of witnessing the working of the Electric Telegraph. But you will know all from Mama, I suppose tomorrow evening, as she intends to call upon you.  Sarah dined with us yesterday ………………….

            called upon on Saturday, has been much persuading Mama to get Jack into King’ College, and has promised her all his interest to effect that object. If we succeed he will have, of course, the first rate classical education, free of charge.

            I saw your last note to Mama, and am glad that you write in such good spirits, and are so happy.  May God bless you, my darling child.

            Your affectionate father

            Tess                               Joseph Haydn

             [In June 1854 Sir John Barrow got him (JH) work as an extra clerk at the Admiralty at 3 guineas a week; his job was to ‘prepare a digest and index of several volumes of dispatches from the Principal Secretaries of State during the last century’ (letter to the Royal Literary Fund 1855) work, which he enjoyed and did well. But his luck did not hold, for, on Easter Tuesday 1855, he suffered a stroke; a public subscription was organized by Moxon and the impresario Alfred Bunn, a friend of Haydn’s Dublin days. Extract from Oxford Dictionary of Biography]           


1854    October 20th Letter to the Board

Hon Sirs   

I beg to recommend that Mr Turner have an order to make 30 reams of VR paper for Adhesive Foreign Bill Stamps

and that he be referred to this department for particulars

[IR42/13 p70 Board of Inland Revenue Secretary (Stamps) Postage Stamps

Journal or Drafting Book of Mr Ormond Hill of the Stamping Branch]


1854    October 27th Letter to the Board

Hon Sirs 

I beg to recommend that Mr Turner have an order to make 100 reams of Anchor paper for Draft Receipt Stamps  and that he

be referred to this department for particulars

[IR42/13 p71 Board of Inland Revenue Secretary (Stamps) Postage Stamps

Journal or Drafting Book of Mr Ormond Hill of the Stamping Branch]


1854        lst November

            Chafford is mentioned in a report of the Original Society as a ‘First Class Mill, employing the following number of members: 17 men, 2 boys. [JVS]


1854    November 2nd 

Letter to Richard Turner Esq.

Sir   Herewith are enclosed to you 6 sheets of paper and a guide for the quality of the ‘VR’ and anchor water mark paper which

you are about to make.  A very little more toughness is required with this exception the texture and fineness of these sheets is precisely

what is wanted. Both these papers to be prepared chemically as the last made VR paper was; by the addition of the pulp of the

same proportion of prussiate of potash. Entire freedom from hard spots and grit of all kind is absolutely essential.

I am  Sir Your obedt Servt       

            [IR42/13 p72 Board of Inland Revenue Secretary (Stamps) Postage Stamps

Journal or Drafting Book of Mr Ormond Hill of the Stamping Branch]


1854    November 13 letter to The Board

            Hon Sirs

             I beg to recommend that an order be given       to Mr Turner to make five reams of paper for Admiralty Court Stamps

            and that he be referred to this department for particulars.

            [IR42/13 p73 Board of Inland Revenue Secretary (Stamps) Postage Stamps

Journal or Drafting Book of Mr Ormond Hill of the Stamping Branch]


1854        Friday 8 December Extract Mentioned in a letter from Henry Fox Talbot to Nevil Story-Maskelyne

            ‘I tried these expts with Whatman’s paper  & Turner’s paper, which I thought were the best’

             [Fox Talbot Museum/Lacock Abbey Collection Lacock : Correspondence of William Henry Fox Talbot ref 07088]


1854    22 December Extract from a letter from Henry Fox Talbot Lacock Abbey Chippenham to William Crookes

            ‘I will at present mention one, which if successful would be of considerable interest. Since collodion is made of different kinds of paper,

            amongst others of Turner’s photographic paper which is nothing but common writing paper I believe’

            [Agfa Fotohistorama Cologne collection FH4424 Document number 07098]


1855        Extracts referring to Turner and Chafford from The De La Rue History of British & Foreign Postage Stamps 1855-1901 by John Easton

[British Library ref: 8247/11]   Chapter on  Inland Revenue p 4 – 5.

            The Minutes of the Board of Inland Revenue show that twenty-five reams of paper for the Fourpence were ordered from Turner & Company,  Chafford Mills, Fordcombe, on June 14, 1855, and that instructions to prepare for the perforation were issued on July 2nd.  On July 24th it was noted that the Post Office would require four thousand ‘Specimens’, and it was determined that the stamps should be issued on July 31st.

On November 3, 1855 the Board instructed Turner to make a further thirty reams of paper for the Fourpence….

The Reams contained 500 sheets each, and each sheet contained 240 stamps.

…between 30 September 1855 to October 1861 it appears a total of 133,129 sheets were supplied producing 31,950,960 stamps.


1856    A letter from Portals to Turner sent in February 1856 thanks him for providing samples of paper sized at Chafford Mills but notes that they contain fine wrinkles1. It also states that they have abandoned the Donkin sizing machine. Another letter four months later explains that Portals were not prepared to pay Turner a licence fee because of the ‘entire failure of the sizing machine for sizing single sheets of paper’2 Then, in December 1856, Portals wrote to Donkins stating that ‘neither the drying cylinders nor the sizing machines are yet at work. ‘they have not as yet performed one hour’s work with any but the most unsatisfactory results and I apprehend that the entire machine must be abandoned’3. Again in July 1860 Portals wrote to Donkin as follows: ‘That the apparatus will ultimately succeed I can scarcely entertain a doubt, but the result will have been obtained after very many experiments which have cost much time, much thought and a considerable outlay extending over eight years’4. Clearly the whole project had been a disaster. [extract from an article by Alan Crocker BAPH Quarterly] 1.HRO:132M98/D2/3 Letter from Portland to Turner of 18 February 1856

2. HRO: 132M98/D2/3 Letter from Portlas to Turner of 11 June 1856. 3.HRO:132M98/D2/3 Letter from Portals to Donkin of 29 December 1856. 4. HRO:132M98/D2/3 Letter from Portals to Donkin of 21 Jul 1860.


1856    15 October    Letter from Richd Turner to John Barcham Green Hayle Mill

Chafford Mill

            Dear Sir

            Will you be kind enough to inform me what number of reams you have made for a day’s work of Bank Fscap 8 per ream, made of all canvas, the size of the moulds as under, & you will oblige

            Yours very truly

            Richd Turner

            Length (but eve the dabbles) 17¼ by 14¼ two sheets on each mould 

[HMA 7/2/10/46] 


1856    Extracts referring to Turner and Chafford from The De La Rue History of British & Foreign Postage Stamps 1855-1901 by John Easton [British Library ref: 8247/11]

            The first entry in the Correspondence Book (Unnumbered) which concerns Postage Stamps is dated  December 14, 1856,

            and confirms that the paper for the Indian stamps was supplied by R. Turner of the Chafford Mills, Tunbridge Wells [p183] 


1857    Kent Poll Book 

            Penshurst  Turner Richard  Chafford Mill


1857    Sussex Advertiser August 11 1857

On Saturday last, as a lad named Haffenden was engaged cleaning some machinery, while it was being worked by steam, at the Chafford Paper Mills, his hand was drawn into the machinery and severely lacerated, one finger being cut clean off.  On being removed to the Tunbridge Wells Infirmary, it was found necessary to amputate one of the injured fingers.  He is doing well.  About three years ago his brother met with a serious accident at the same place.

            [Info Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1859    Extracts referring to Turner and Chafford from The De La Rue History of British & Foreign Postage Stamps 1855-1901

by John Easton [British Library ref: 8247/11]

Letter from Waren De La Rue to  Ormond Hill dated February 7, 1859 The third paragraph refers to the surfacing of the paper,

carried out by De La Rue, as an additional precaution against fraud.

‘ I have delayed some days answering your letter of the 20th ulto, in order that I might have an opportunity of discussing the subject therein referred to with a friend, and also of reflecting on the cause of the defects in the Anchor paper, with a view to their prevention.

            I am, after due reflection, enable to state that the defects you complain of are preventable, and that you would be fully justified in rejecting all paper having the objectionable blue stains, or that having blue spots.  Mr Turner is so far right when he said that the prussiate of potash is the cause of the blueness in the paper, and also for the blue spots, but I cannot for a moment admit that either the blueness, or the blue spots, are a necessary consequence of the employment of that salt.  As far as the blue spots are concerned we may readily dismiss them, for they are unquestionably due to the presence of small particles of iron in the paper, which ought not to exist therein, for more than one reason.

The V.R. paper is always white, but in this Mr Turner puts no prussiate of potash, although he was originally instructed to do so; but, as he made a great trouble of having to do this, we put prussiate of potash into the white colour we use in preparing the paper, and thus obtain the requisite security against the reissue of the stamp.

Although we employ prussiate of potash, you have never reason to complain of the blueness of the V.R.sheets when printed, and you have here distinct evidence that the employment of prussiate of potash does not necessarily produce the defects complained of, and which, in the case of the Anchor paper result entirely (so far as regards the general blue shade) from the decomposition of the prussiate of potash itself. Now prussiate of potash is a very stable salt – I may pronounce it to be one of the most stable – and I feel justified in stating that its decomposition in some of the paper manufactured by Mr. Turner is the result of want of the necessary precautions. Prussiate of potash, by oxidizing re-agents, is convertible into red prussiate of potash (ferric cyanide of potassium) by a removal of a portion of the potassium potash, but it is necessary that free acid, or an acid salt, should be present, or that it should be in contact with decomposing organic matter (stale size).

I am, however inclined to attribute the decomposition of the prussiate of potash, and the production of Prussian blue and red prussiate, to the existence of free chlorine, or chloride of lime, in small quantities, in the pulp from which the paper is made, and which could be got rid of by using the antichlore (sulphide of soda).

If Mr Turner will, in the first place, employ pulp free from iron particles ,be careful, after thorough washing of the pulp, to add some antichlore in the engine, and lastly, not to employ size in the slightest degree putrescent,  I am convinced that he will obviate the defects complained of. I assume that he takes the precaution to employ alum free from iron, and that he does not dissolve hi salum in iron vessels, and hence I do not suggest the probability of the defects arising from such an obvious cause.


Both the V.R.and the Anchor paper are good, as regards texture and surface.


1859    9 February      Letter to Ormond Hill Esq.  Chafford 

            “Dear Sir,

            I am making the V.R. paper, which has the prussiate of potash in it, and which is free from spots, and has only slight shade (blue) in it, less than the piece you sent me as a sample.  

            As I am on this sort of paper, at the vat, I propose making a little more of the Garter;  as I have about 12 reams left :  I will make the quantity of up to 40 reams, and hold it in stock till you require it.

            Yours obediently,

             Rd Turner”

            [A History of The Adhesive Stamps of The British Isles available for postal and telegraph purposes  

            by Hastings E.Wright and A.B.Creeke Junr. 1899 p 97] [BL ref 8247.q.44


1860    Sussex Advertiser March 6, 1860

            On Tuesday last an accident occurred to a workman named Henry Ovenden, employed in Mr Turner’s paper mills at Chafford. From what we can learn he was engaged in taking some sheets of paper as they came off the rolls of a machine which was in motion. Whilst doing this, by some means his right hand was drawn between the rollers, as was also a part of his arm.  Although both his hand and arm were much hurt we are glad to say no bones were broken. [Information Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1860    23 March Extract from a contract between Warren de La Rue, Jonah Nathan & William de La Rue and the Commissioners.

             ‘It is agreed as follows: The Firm shall provide the paper to be used in the manufacture of the said stamps which is to be precisely similar in all respects to that now supplied by Mr. Turner’           [TNA  IR79/5]


1860    ‘Two watermark moulds bearing a Pineapple watermark were made in July 1860 for the wove paper of the stamps and were subsequently handed over by Somerset House to the Crown Agents for the Colonies on 22 December 1866.  The paper was hand-made by Turner & Co at Chafford Mill, Fordcombe, Tunbridge Wells in Kent, being handmade the paper varies considerably in thickness’.

 [BAPH Quarterly No 23 p21/24 Watermarks in Early Postage Stamps 1840-1900 Peter Bower] 


1861    7 April Census: Richard Turner (64) born Maidstone Paper Maker employing 34 men 11 boys 30 women and 8 girls Eliza (56) Richard (27) paper makers son, Sarah A (24) paper makers daughter, Charles (17) paper makers son, Arabella Warden daughter M (30), Edith Warden (8) g.dau, Agnes Warden (7) g.dau, Arthur Warden 8 mths g.son all born Tunbridge Wells,

            3 visitors and 2 housemaids and 2 nurses living at Chafford House. [RG9/490/22/8]


1861    Penshurst Rates:   Richard Turner   Rate  £320.5.0d  assessment  £4.0.0¾d

            Also for 19 Cottages owned by Richard Turner Chafford occupied by Ovenden & others [CKS]


1861    Return of claimants for drawback of duty on paper by General Order [TNA Cust119/200]

            There were no claimants in the Tunbridge Wells District in the return dated 14 September

            but a Mr Turner is listed claiming on 5 tons in the return dated 30 August in the Maidstone District.


1862    Post Office Directory of Kent

            Richard Turner Esq Chafford, Fordcombe Green is listed in both the Court Section and under Paper Makers


1863    Penshurst Rates

            Richard Turner owner and occupier of Paper Mills House and Lane Chafford plus the cottages

            and house in Fordcombe  [CKS]


1863    April 6  Letter from Richard Turner to J B Green

            Dear Sir                                                                                   Chafford

            If you are at home on Thursday we will do ourselves the pleasure of paying you a visit.

            Yrs truly

            Rd  Turner

            [HMA 7/2/111]


1863    Aug 19  Letter from Richard Turner Chafford Mills to J B Green Hayle Mill

            Dear Sir

            We shall be happy to see you on Tuesday next.  I am not quite sure as I have no correct …….

But I think the Patent has only 2 years more from Nov next and should certainly not think of asking you the full premium.

            Yours truly   Rd  Turner


1863    Aug 12                                                                        Chafford

            Dear Sir

If you will say what day next month it will suit you to pay us a visit & let me know I will arrange to be at home. Don’t fix on Monday

Yours truly

Richd Turner    

[HMA 7/2/118]


1863    28 August                                                       Chafford Mills

            My Dear Sir,

I will arrange with Mr Hollingworth (I can do so). Send me pack of green Bank Pose & I will dry it thro my Drying Machine & size it at once

            Yrs truly

            R Turner

            [HMA 7/2/119 Watermark R Turner Kent Watermark – cheque book/securities paper]



1863    September 16 Letter from R Turner to John Barcham Green

            Dear Sir

If you are going to apply the Glavanized Sheeting for Roofing I would advise you look over at our garage  the ….doors will for ceiling &c

Yours &   

R Turner


1863    Nov 15 Letter from Richard Turner Chafford Mills Tunbridge Wells to J. B. Green Hayle Mill                      

            Dear Sir

            I shall have occasion to be in Maidstone on Tuesday & I will call on you and wish to take particulars of your Rag Duster – I hope you will be at home

            Yours truly   Richd  Turner             [Ref: HMA Nov 1863 7/2/122]


1863    Aug 19  Letter from Richard Turner Chafford Mills to J B Green Hayle Mill

            Dear Sir

I do not remember how much longer the Patent for our sizing Machine has to run – the Patent was left in the hands of Mr Palmer of Bedford Row.  I do not remember the number.  I will ascertain these from Tranters

I shall be most happy to see again & go over the Mills. If Thursday next will suit you. I will have all ready for you           

            Yours truly   Rd  Turner


1864    Paper for De La Rue* letterpress stamps were made by R Turner & Co, Chafford Mills, Fordcombe, Nr Tunbridge Wells.  This was transferred to Roughway in 1878. [see entry under 1878]  Up to c.1864 all paper was hand-made; thereafter was gradually replaced by machine-made.

            [*The position of De La Rue's was as a contractor to the Inland Revenue for British revenue and postage stamps and  to the Crown Agents for orders from Colonial governments.  This meant that orders for paper for British stamps were placed by the Inland Revenue which received the supply and issued it to De La Rue as required, the firm, however, laid down the specification and, via the Inland Revenue, dealt with the papermaker on technical matters.

[BAPH Quarterly No 30 June 1999 British Watermarks: De La Rue’s Paper and Watermarks by Harry Dagnall]


1864    Jany 19th          Letter from Rd Turner to John Barcham Green at Hayle Mill

            Dear Sir

            I have sent your letter to Mr Hollingworth. If you recollect when you first applied some molds you I thought the Patent had 2 years to run but I was not sure & that you could ascertain the fact by applying to Mesrs Palmer the patent was left in his hands & you said that you would find out from him or the Patent Office. When I saw Mr Hollingworth I [….]  [..] your application & he said “is it be the same as others paid”, viz 200£ I replied as this Patent had so short a time to run, 100£ was I thought fair, & he agreed.

            Subsequently I understood from him & yourself that you had agreed for this sum.

            When you settle let me know my moity – one half

            Yrs truly 

            Richd Turner 

            [Ref: HMA Jan 1864 7/2/125]


1864    January 21      Letter from Rd Turner to John Barcham Green at Hayle Mill

            Chafford Mills

            Dear Sir,

            I have received the enclosed from W Hollingworth. I am content to receive 40£ for my moity and I suppose W. Hollingworth will do the same, but you must arrange with him. If the patent be renewed we shall expect a further sum & in which case I am sure it will be to your benefit.

            Yours truly,    Rd Turner

            [Ref: HMA 712/124 Jan]


1864    22nd January   Letter from Turkey Mills Maidstone to J. B.Green Hayle Mill


            Understanding from our sizer that yours is coming to Turkey Mill to day we beg to say we object to his coming into our Mill

            in consequence of an unpleasant letter received through Mr Turner from you

            Your obt servs  Hollingworth Ltd

            [Ref: HMA Jan 1864 7/2/125]


1864    May 10  Extract from a letter written whilst in Lewes  from William Thomas of Soho to John Barcham Green of Hayle Mill

            “I saw S Savage last night & find Turner is in for about 22,000£ at a meeting of Creditors he offered 6/8 in 3 instalments 2-2-2/8 but he could not give or get any security – they would not accept it – he owes the Lewes Bank 7000£ & has behaved very bad to Savage he owed him a Bill 40£ which came in just as he stoped & only 4 days before induced him to send in 140£ worth of rages – which is a heavy pull on a young beginner but he says he shall get over it. I dare say I shall see him again & hear more about it.

            Remaining yours truly

            W Thomas”

[There is no evidence that this was Turner of Chafford and there was no reference to a bankruptcy in the London Gazette – however it appears the Mill was offered for sale – see below –and Henry Warden appears to have taken over shortly afterwards]


1864    Extract from Sales Details LOT 9

            A very important freehold estate comprising the Chafford Paper Mills

            Established for a period of nearly 100 years, with good supply of Water

            A neat residence, with offices and land

The Chafford Paper Mills are fitted with every convenience for the carrying on of a profitable trade, supplied with water from the River Medway and comprise Bleaching and Rag Boiling house and Rag Engine House with lean-to, Laboratory, Vat House, Old and New Machine Rooms, Glazing, Sizeing and Finishing Shop House, Salle with air drying Lofts and Sizeing Shop lean-to each. Passage, Finishing and rage warehouse over.  Size Boiling House, Steam Engine and Boiling House, Stoke Hole and Waggon and detached buildings viz – Millwright’s Shop, Gas Retort House, Smithy, Gas Holder and Cutting room with Rag Warehouse over.

            [ JVS]             

[This sale obviously did not take place and it is at this date that Henry Warden probably purchased the business].


1864    Paper Trade in Great Britain & Ireland 1921-22

Richard Turner Chafford Tunbridge Wells – Writing Papers, Hand and Machine Made,

Tissue &c.   [ St.Brides Printing Library]


1864/5 Penshurst Rates:

            Turner Rich Esq  Rate £400  assessment £2.10.0d  [CKS]


1864    26 August

            Letter from Rd Turner to John Barcham Green

            Dear Sir

            I have been so much away from home lately on business and I am sorry to say that your letter has been mislaid

            I have just concluded a partnership with my brother in law and the business will be carried on in the name of “Turner & Co”.

            Thanks for your offer of  the […]but at present we could not make use of it, it is strong but I am afraid would be

            hardly clean enough for what I shall be making for some time. My father & mother send kind regards

            [HMA Ref 7/2/145 August 1865]


1864    Penshurst Rates:  Turner Richard David Rains Esq Occupier and Hy Warden Esq Owner of

            House & Paper Mill Chafford   [CKS]


1865    Register of Incoming Papers. 1865-70 

            28 November Mr O Hill – 15 reams ‘balance’ paper of 3 reams of Flag & Anchor Paper – application for an order to

            Turner of Chafford Mill to make – received 29 Nov returned 30 Nov. [TNA IR79/50]


1866    19 Jan O Hill   Turner Application for order to supply 70 reams ‘Garter’ Paper  70 VR and 70 PM received 26 Jan returned 27 Jan  [TNA IR79/50]


1866    24 Feb  O Hill Application for orders to Turner to make 20 reams of Anchor paper for 3d and 6d Inland Revenue Stamps

            received 3 March returned 5 March [TNA IR79/50]


1866    March      Board  The officer at Chafford Mill directed to receive a new dandy roller (made by De La Rue & Co)

            and to use it for making paper received 15 March returned 16 March

[TNA IR79/50]


1866        May 12 

            Letter written by Rd Turner to John Barcham Green at Hayle Mill 

Chafford Mill Tunbridge Wells

My dear Sir

Would you have the kindness to let me know the number of Reams to days work that your men would make of the Hale Loan of the reduced size whether any difference on account of attention – to moulds.

I promised Mr De La Rue that I would hold no conversation with you with respect to price but I presume there can be no objection to my knowing the days work, as otherwise it will be difficult to make any calculation, half a ream per day will make a considerable difference.  I hope you are busy.

Your truly

Rd Turner

[Geo.Wilmot Shoreham Mill Sevenoaks under bid Turner for this Job. 3 Mills were vying for it – Hayle Mill, Chafford and Shoreham – info Maureen Barcham Green]

[HMA 7/2/202]



1866    12 May  O Hill  VR moulds made by Turner without authority received 23 May returned 11 June  [TNA IR79/50]


1866    May 25          

            Letter to J B Green Esq

            My dear Sir

            We have been applied to for a large order for Bank note paper – which as nearly as I can judge would keep two vats employed for 12 months –

            Could you make any part of this ? If so I shall be happy to meet you in London on Monday next at 3 p.m. or on Tuesday before 12 o’clock. 

            The order would not be given before 3 months from this.

            Hoping you are all well & with kind regards our people

            I remain  

            Yours Truly 

             R D R Turner

            [HMA 1868 7/2/195]           


1866    May 28          

            Chafford Mills, Tunbridge Wells to J B Green Esq

            My dear Sir

            I shall be happy to meet you at the Bridge House Hotel on Wednesday next at 3 o’clock

            Yours sincerely   

             R D R Turner

            [HMA May 1866  7/2/154]                                 


1866    31 May  O Hill  Turner  Increase of charge for the manufacture of various watermark papers  received 5 June returned 7 June  [TNA IR79/50]


1866    22 Aug   Hore              Respecting the removal of ‘Pine Apple Moulds’ from Chafford Mills to the

            Office of the Crown Agents for the Colonies received 1 Jan 1867 returned 2 Jan

            [TNA  IR79/50]


1866    Post Office Directory of Kent

            Fordcombe Green about 2 ½ miles south is a hamlet of the Parish (Penshurst)

            Here is an extensive paper mill worked by R.D.R.Turner and Co which gives employment to a great number of hands. 

            R.D.R Turner is not listed under Private Residents

1866    28 September from De La Rue 110 Bunhill Row EC  to J B Green                      

My dear sir

We are now working three machines instead of two – therefore pray do not fail to let us have 80 reams a day until

you have finished your quantity and let me know by telegraph tomorrow how much more we shall receive from you.

You will understand my being so urgent, not to have you miss a day of 80 reams – I cannot use your and Turners

paper at the same time I must therefore clear you off before I begin his. I leave town tomorrow for my [..]  quarters

and want your telegram to arrange matters before I leave London

Yours very truly


The whole of Turners paper has to be returned to them to resort into the numbers of the sheets.


1866    3 October 

            Letter from R Turner from Chafford Mills, Tunbridge Wells to J B Green Hayle Mill

            My dear Sir

            Pray excuse my not having answered your letter before. I was in London all of Monday and yesterday

            was so very busy that I was obliged to neglect my correspondence. The telegram was intended for us as you

            have no doubt heard from De La Rue.

            Hoping you are all well.  

            I remain, Yours truly

            R Turner


1866/7 Penshurst Rates Turner R.D.R. Esq Rate £411.15.0d  assessment £2.11.5½d  [CKS]


1867    15 Jan  F Hill  Ordered 80 reams of Flower, 10 reams of Cross and 70 VR watermarked papers

            from Mr R D Turner received 23 Jan returned 24 Jan  [TNA  IR79/50]


1867    Warren De La Rue and Ormond Hill (Deputy Superintendent and later Superintendent of the Stamping Department at Somerset House) had a poor opinion of Turner, the chief complaints being the colour of the paper, cockling, spots due to the presence of iron particles, the excessive depth of impression of the watermark which affected the printing quality of the paper, and the varying thickness of the sheets.

            Ormond Hill  referred to this last matter in a letter to Warren De La Rue dated 17 May 1867.

"That Turner is a very troublesome fellow as I told you the other day. He never keeps anything right, as soon as one fault is cured he runs into another.  I think you will be able to have the paper sorted and we must make Turner pay for the loss both in the trouble of sorting &c and the cost of the paper".

The spots on the flower paper [i.e. that with a flower or spray watermark] are soft and I think not nearly of so much importance as those on the garter paper which are hard.

He wrote again on 20 March 1868:

"We have received from Mr Turner a consignment of garter watermarked paper, some of the reams of which are made up of thick sheets and weight  11lbs. 4ozs., and other are made up of thin sheets and weight only 9lbs. 4ozs."

            [BAPH Quarterly No 30 p1-7 British Watermarks: De L Rue’s Paper & Watermarks – Harry Dagnall].


1867    11 April Anchor Paper small 3 specimen sheets to O.H. D.L.R. and Turner [TNA IR79/50]


1867    15 July Order to Turner to make 100 reams of ‘Flower’ Paper [TNA IR79/50]


1867    28 October Bedford  Dandy Roller – Please to allow officer at Chafford Mills to have it sent to

Smith for repair received 30 Oct returned 7 Nov   [TNA IR79/50]


1867    Extracts referring to Turner and Chafford from The De La Rue History of British & Foreign Postage Stamps 1855-1901

by John Easton             p.678  South Australia Two-pence                                                        [British Library ref: 8247/11]

The Agent General suggested in a letter dated Nov 11 1867 that Cowan & Sons, who made the star watermark for the recess-printed stamps, might either make the paper to De La Rue’s specification or that the moulds might be used.  This proposal was presumably dealt with in a letter of December 10th which is referred to, but not included in, the correspondence book.  De La Rue were told to go ahead on December 11th and Turner, of The Chafford Mills, Tunbridge Wells confirmed on January 17th 1868 that the moulds would be ready very shortly. 


1868    February 7      London Gazette   p.612

Notice is hereby given that the partnership heretofor subsisting between Richard David Rains Turner and Henry Warden of Chafford Mills in the parish of Penshurst in The County of Kent Paper Manufacturers under the style of R.D.Turner & Co has this day been dissolved by mutual consent.  All debts due and owing by the said late firm will be respectively received and paid by the undersigned, Henry Warden, and the said business carried on by him and on his responsibility alone, under the style of Turner & Co – dated 4 February 1868. [GHL]


1868    18 March

            Letter written from Geo.Wilmot Shoreham Nr Sevenoaks to John Barcham Green

            Dear Green

            It seems an age since I either saw or heard anything of you. I hope you are quite convalescent – I have had a nasty touch of influenza lately, which is anything but agreeable. What are you doing about this Factory Act. – I thought I was not liable as I do not employ 50 people, but it appears from an Inspector from the Gov who has called here today that the number of hands makes no difference – I shall be glad to hear how you manage with your Lay Boys, young women etc.  I suppose on Good Friday you will not open the Mill at all – I have usually shut down at 9 a.m. – which has given the Men ample time to get tolerably well soaked and have seriously thought of working all day thinking of the two evils this would be the least – I suppose you are buying your fines for 27/- to 28/- new & new cuts  38/- to 40/=- Hides all at 45/-, Ox pieces dry – 28/-.

            I am tolerably well off for orders – I have not any stock & I send out as fast as the Papers come round; do you know what Balston are doing – have they all their vats at work on short time or how?  Is it correct that R.Turner Junr. Chafford is giving up his Mill?  I have heard so between ourselves.

            Believe me   Your very truly   Geo.Wilmot

            [HMA 7/2/181 A]


1868        Penshurst Rates:  Warden Henry Rate £327  [CKS]


1868    Letter from Rd Turner to John Barcham Green Hayle Mill

            Chafford Mills Tunbridge Wells    April 14 1868

            My dear Sir

            Can you kindly inform me where the best treble lines are to be procured ?

            Hoping you are all well

            Believe me   Yours truly   

            Rd Turner

            [HMA 7/2184]


1868    21 April O Hill  Mace Flower and VR watermark order Turner to make Ireland Petty Sessions paper order Turner to make

            Received 24 May returned 28  [TNA IR79/50]


1869    Letter from Richard Turner to John Barcham Green Hayle Mill Maidstone

            Feb 17   Chafford Mills  Tunbridge Wells

            My dear Sir

            I saw Mr DLR yesterday and have agreed to abide by your decision as to the price of the Loan Paper – Trusting to hear from you on the subject

            I remain      Yours truly

            Rd Turner

            [HMA 7/2/199]    


1869    8 November Watermark papers Garter and Flag ordered of Turner received and returned

            13 Jan 1870  [TNA  IR79/50]


1870    5 January  O Hill  Garter paper  - R.D.Turner called upon to pay £1.10.0 for resorting which had to be done at this office 

            received 16 Jan returned 21 Jan    [TNA IR79/50]


1870    Post Office Directory of Kent  Penshurst

             R.D.R. Turner appears under Private Residents and

            in the Commercial Section Turner & Co, paper makers, Fordcombe


1870    March  Dallimore   removal to excise in order to become ‘Teller’ at Chafford Mills

            received 21 March returned 22 March    [TNA IR79/50]


1870    7 May  O Hill  Cross Paper Order to Turner to make 20 reams [TNA IR79/50]


1870    29 October  O Hill   ‘VR’ Paper Turner has had 19/4 for Tellers overwork who sorted it for him here   [TNA IR79/50]


1870    Extracts referring to Turner and Chafford from The De La Rue History of British & Foreign Postage Stamps 1855-1901

by John Easton             [British Library ref: 8247/11]

Letter from Ormond Hill to De La Rue 28 April re the construction of the dandy rollers which was a complicated matter

and gives interesting details of the share that the firm took in their construction.

“The Board has ordered Mr. Amies of Maidstone [Surviving  records for this company at CKS]

To prepare a three sheet cross marked roller for making paper for the 5/- Postage Stamps.  Also a three sheet garter roller for

making paper for the 4d., Postage Stamps.

………..Please put your selves fully into communication with Mr Amies, whom I have directed to communicate with

you on the one hand and Mr Turner on the other, to the end that the master bits and rollers generally may be such as will

work satisfactorily when finished and produce good paper.


1871    25 February  O Hill  Flower paper defective – Turner pays £5.3.2 for sorting of 61 reams         [TNA IR79/51]


1871    17 March  O Hill  ‘VR’ paper small – order for two reams to be issued to Turner                     [TNA IR79/51]


1871    2 April

            Census: Henry Warden (Richard Turner’s son-in-law) is listed as a Paper  Manufacturer and Land Owner

            employing 31 men 45 women 6 boys and 6 girls living at Oakfield Court, Camden Park Road, Tunbridge Wells             [RG10/928/116]


1871    2 April

            Census: Richard Turner is listed as an Annuitant and his son Richard D.R Turner is shown as paper maker

            living at Chafford House            [RG10/925]


1871    29 April  O Hill  Flower Paper – submits that Mr Turner be called upon to pay £4.1.4

            the cost of sorting 56 reams of defective – Turner paid              [TNA IR79/51]


1871    6 July  G Talbot  Dandy Roller – request that it may be given to Mr Turner in order that it may be altered.  [TNA IR79/51]


1871    18 July  Watermark paper manufacture of proposal to transfer the making of from Mr Turner to Messrs Hollingsworth of Maidstone.  [TNA IR79/51]


1871    18 July  Anchor watermarked paper manufacture to be transferred to Messrs Hollingsworth of Maidstone returned 19 September  [TNA IR79/51]


1871    De La Rue’s  attack on Turner's paper was reopened in July 1871 when De Le Rue wrote to the Inland Revenue:

‘Messrs. Turner, the present makers of the Stamp Papers, are not giving us satisfaction, and we are desirous that Messrs. Hollingworth of Maidstone should undertake our Contracts.  We have had some conversation with Mr .O. Hill on the subject and believe that he also is dissatisfied with Messrs. Turner's paper, and agrees with us in thinking that Messrs. Hollingworth's make is more suitable for adhesive stamps."

Despite Hollingworth's paper being entirely satisfactory Turner continued to make the bulk of paper for DLR. Relations between Turner and DLR were at times somewhat strained, nevertheless Turner's paper was found to be more suitable for DLR's purposes than any other, a point made by the firm in correspondence with the India office in 1880 when the latter wanted De La Rue to use another papermaker for their stamps.

"If paper equally as good as that which we obtain from Messrs. Turner can be procured from any other mill employed by the government, we should be perfectly willing to procure the Indian Adhesive Stamp paper from the same source.  We know from experience that many unforeseen difficulties arise in manufacture when any change is made and therefore we should be exceedingly loath to leave Messrs Turner.

In 1880 the paper contract came up for renewal and Turner retained the contract and it says much for his expertise (and patience) that his mill was able to make paper to this standard and at an acceptable price.  There could not have been many other users of paper that required such accuracy.

            [BAPH Quarterly No 30 p1-7 British Watermarks: De L Rue’s Paper & Watermarks – Harry Dagnall].


1871    31 July  O Hill  Flower Paper Turner to make 5 reams  [TNA IR79/51]


1871    16 August  Hollingsworth to make 200 reams of Anchor Watermark paper as an experiment received 5 October. 

            Board gave permission for De La Rue to have an Anchor roller made at their own expense for Messrs Hollingsworth’s Mill.  [TNA IR79/51]


1871    1 September  O Hill ‘VR’ paper Turner to make 30 reams.  [TNA IR79/51]


1871    The De La Rue History of British & Foreign Stamps 1855-1901 by John Easton                   [British Library ref: 8247/11]

            From chapter on Crown Agents – Procedure Paper p294/5

            Hitherto the paper for the Colonial postage stamps had been supplied by the firm. From time to time they received instructions for the Crown Agents to make fifty reams, and the order was placed with R Turner at the Chafford Mills. On December 22 1871 Sargeaunt wrote the follow letter

            “We learn from the Inspector of Stamps to this Department that on the 30th ultimo 10 rms of C.C. postage paper was handed to him, and on his making enquiry he was informed that such paper was in lieu of a similar quantity which had been destroyed a short time previously and returned to the manufacturer.       It was subsequently intimated to the Inspector by one of your subordinates that the paper in question was a surplus remaining over, after delivery of 56 rms on the 30th October last, by Messrs. Turner, who had expressed an intention to destroy such surplus but had been requested by you to forward it to Bunhill Row.      Before offering any remarks on the subject we shall be glad to receive from you a report thereon.’

            After an investigation the firm [De La Rue] sent the following report on January 4,1872

            ‘With reference to your letter of the 22nd ult. Requesting us to acquaint you with the circumstances under which 10 rms of C.C. Postage paper were forwarded to your officer by Messrs. Turner in lieu of a similar quantity of paper which had been destroyed, we beg to say that we have questioned Messrs. Turner on the subject and are surprised to find that they have been in the habit of retaining any surplus of the paper which might be made, with a view to including it in a future delivery, and that the 10 reams in question were drawn from the surplus made in executing your order of the 25th September last.  We entertain no doubt that when Messrs. Turner first undertook your work, the necessity of repulping all the undelivered paper was duly impressed upon them, and we much regret that they should have departed from those instructions.  We think it, however, just to say that in manufacturing special papers it is impossible correctly to estimate the allowance for spoilage, so that it frequently happens that a considerable quantity is made in excess, which Messrs. Turner explain they could not repulp except at a serious disadvantage, as it would be comparatively valueless as a material for new paper.

            Confirming what we have verbally informed you, there is an excise officer in constant attendance at Chafford Mills to supervise the manufacture of the Inland Revenue and India Stamp papers, and, feeling the importance of the Colonial Stamps being checked in each stage of their production, we venture to recommend that the Board of Inland Revenue should be applied to allow their officer also to control the Crown Agents’ Stamp Papers.          


1872    19 January Richard Turner aged 75 died and was buried at Fordcombe Church


1872    4 May Richard Turner was shown as a Paper Manufacturer when the administration of his effects of under £2,000 was granted to his widow Eliza


1872    6 April             Mr Turner to pay 3/2d for the sorting of defective – balance paper at this office.            [TNA IR79/51]


1872    2 August

            Messrs Turner & Co

            One Wove Role for Double Cap Loan Paper 27x 17

            One Wove Role for Medicine Loan Paper 22 x 18 in

            Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1873    6 June

            Turner & Co

            A Dandy for 2 sheets of Wove Medium Bank name T F Newell to appear once in each half sht same side letter as J Whatman in Large Post

            Chafford Mills

            Penshurst Station

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1873    8 June Robertson  Watermarked papers for adhesive stamps Mr Turner to supply 25 reams of large ‘Anchor’

[TNA IR79/52 Board of Inland Revenue: Office of Director of Stamping:  Register of Incoming Papers. 1872-76]


1873    Tunbridge Weekly Express

            Report  about a cricket match played on 26th August between Gentlemen of the Neighbourhood and Eleven Ovendens of Fordcombe

            [most of whom appear to have been employed at Chafford]     

            ‘Through the kindness of Messrs. Warden and Turner of Chafford Mills, a general holiday was granted to their employees part of whom

            went to Brighton and the rest were provided with an excellent tea upon the grounds and spent the afternoon very enjoyably in different games’

            [Tunbridge Wells Reference Library]


1873    13 September

            Pair of Small Laid Post Moulds 19 to inch with water twice in each sheet twice as under:          

            R Turner                                                                       R Turner

            Chafford Mills                                                              Chafford Mills

            Chafford Mills Penshurst Station                                  

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1873    25 October O Hill  Watermarked paper for adhesive stamps Mrs Faircloth and Mr Turner to supply. [TNA IR79/52]


1873    19 November

            One Laid Medicine Roller for two sheets with water mark and monogram

                                                W B & Co


            Chafford Mills

            Penshurst Station

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1873    6 December

            Turner & Co

            One wove dandy for Chancery Stamps to contain 2 sheets of paper 20¾ x 11¼ ins inside margin lines 19 3/16 x 9 9/16

160 watermarks a Mace in each sheet

            Distance between margin lines round the roll  9 in

            Chafford Mill

            Penshurst Station

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1873    19 December

            Pair of Single Wove Medium Post Moulds watermark Gonthir Dreyfus & Cie

            in each 8 vo [Vo refers to fold in paper] or 4 times in each mould  18 x 22 inside for Decker

            Chafford Milss

            Penshurst Station

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]            


1874    30 Jan O Hill  Watermarked paper for adhesive stamps Mrs Faircloth and Mr Turner to supply. [TNA IR79/52]


1874    19 May

            Turner & Co

            Two Wove Roles for Inland Revenue Stamps one watermarked with Balance Seales the other with ‘Large Shamrock’

            each roll contains 2 sheets distance between Margin Lines on Roll

            19½ x 9 in

            Chafford Mill

            Penshurst Station

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1874    24 June

            Turner & Co

            One Wove Role for two sheets of Inland Revenue Stamps Paper Watermark PM

            1½ in allowed for cutting space

            Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1874    1 July   O Hill              Turner paid 13/11 for sorting defective ‘Flag’ and ‘PN’ Paper               [TNA IR79/51]


1874    14 July            O Hill               Mr Turner to supply 250 reams of ‘Flower’ paper for 3d & 6d  Labels

            July  O Hill The Receiver General has rec d   from Mr Turner the sum of 15/11 being the cost of sorting defective watermarked paper.  [TNA IR79/52]


1874    18 September

            Thos. De La Rue & Co    110 Bunhill Row London

            A Wove Role for Turner’s Machine containing 2 sheets of Paper 2 set each

            Bengal Salt Boot Note

            Actual size of sheet to be 22¼ by 17½ in

            ¾ in allowed between sheets for trimming

            ½ in allowed at each

            1½ in allowed for cutting space

            ¾ in allowed for shrinking each sheet

            1 in allowed for pulling

            (Chafford Mills)

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1874    23 September

            Turner & Co

            One pair of Moulds one sheet on each 10 7/8 x 4 5/8 with embossed watermark

                                S HULDSCHINSKY & SOHNE

            Chafford Mills

            Penshurst Station

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1874    20 October  O Hill Watermarked paper for adhesive stamps Mr Turner to supply

            50 rms of ‘VR’ 25 rms of balance and 6 rms of large ‘shamrock’          [TNA IR79/52]


1874    22 October

            Turner & Co

            One Wove Medium Dandy (2 sheets)

            Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1874    5 November

            Turner & Co

            One pair Laid Tools Cap Moulds marked as sheet

            William Brown & Co                Lion

                      London                        W B & Co

            Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1874    10 November

            Turner & Co

            One pair Laid Fools Cap Moulds watermarked

                             R TURNER

                        CHAFFORD MILLS

            Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1874    Post Office Directory of Kent

            Private Resident Richard Turner.   Commercial Turner & Co, paper makers, Chafford Mills


1875    29 January  O Hill  Watermarked paper for adhesive stamps Mr Turner to supply 50 rms of ‘Flower’ and 40 rms of ‘Cross’ paper  [TNA IR79/52]


1875    12 February  O H Watermarked paper for Life Policy Stamps  Mr Turner to supply 25 reams of ‘Large Anchor’  [TNA IR79/51]


1875    14 May  O Hill  Watermarked paper for adhesive stamps  Mr Turner to supply 80 reams of ‘Garter’ and 70 reams of ‘VR’ paper.  [TNA IR79/52]


1875    15 May

            Turner & Co

            One Imperial Laid Medium Role for 4 to Bank Medium Marks in each and two names below

            Medium Mark             Warranted Pure Linen

            Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1875        22 June   

            Turner & Co

            One Roller for Inland Revenue Paper International Postage for 4 sheets 19 x 11 in edge to edge 192 marks (ORB) in each sheet

            Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1875    25 June ‘Orb’ watermarked paper 100 reams ordered of Mr Turner .  [TNA IR79/52]


1875    28 June Hill O  Watermarked paper for the 2½d postage stamps Mr Turner to supply 100 reams   [TNA IR79/52]


1875    6 July  Turner to pay for sorting defective ‘VR’ Paper [TNA IR79/51]


1875    13 July O Hill  Watermarked paper for Adhesive Stamps Mr Turner to supply 200 reams of ‘Large Shamrock’ paper for 1d Telegraph stamps 

            10 reams of ditto for Dog License Stamps


1875    17 July O Hill  Watermarked paper for Adhesive Stamps Mr Turner to supply 20 reams of PM

            [TNA IR79/52]


1875    27 August

            Thos De La Rue & Co

            One Wove Dandy for 3 sheets for South Australian Postage Paper (the pole to fit Messrs Turner & Co Machine)

            22x14 Mr  Turner  1¼ in pull & ¾ shrinkage  ¼ sheet  writes

            110 Bunhill Row  London

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1875    21 October

            Messrs Tuner & Co

            One pair single sheet moulds 22½ x 16½ in

            Six notes on each sheet watermarked




            Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1875    10 November  O Hill Watermarked Paper for Adhesive Stamps Mr Turner to supply 50 reams of ‘Flower’ paper for 3d Postage Labels

             150 reams ‘VR’ for Foreign Bill Stamps            200 reams ‘Shamrock Large’ for 1d Telegraph stamps.  [TNA IR79/52]


1875        17 November 

            Faircloth & Turner Watermarked Paper Order

            Faircloth to supply 1800 reams of ‘Crown’ and Turner to supply 500 reams of ‘Flower’, 150 reams of ‘VR’ and 200 reams of ‘Shamrock’ large for Telegraph Stamps [TNA IR79/51]


1876        4 February  Board 

            Watermarked Paper for Adhesive Stamps Mr Turner to supply 200 reams of ‘Shamrock’ 200 reams of ‘Orb’ paper [TNA IR79/52]


1876    Paper, Printing and Trades Journal lists Chafford Mill No 389 –

            Writings, Drawings and Bank Notes


1876    Craig’s Directory of Paper Makers : Chafford Mill, No. 389, Turner & Co.      Hand and machine, Writing, Bank, Loan one machine 46”

            [Information Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1876    Price List held at NPM watermarked

                                    TURNER & CO


            TRADE          (Horse)                          MARK



            [NPM SM20/44 Box Paper Mill Price Lists Turner & Co Chafford Mills]


1876        15 June

            Letter from Richard Turner Chafford Mill  Tunbridge Wells  to J Barcham Green Hayle Mill      

            Dear Sir

            I have not had any application to make the paper you mention, but will write to you should I hear anything further

            Yours truly

            R Turner

            [HMA letters 1876]                             


1877        26 April  Robertson 

            Defective watermarked papers – the Recorder General has received from Mr Turner the sum of £1.19.0 being the cost of sorting    [TNA IR79/53 1876-94]


1878    Post Office Directory of Kent – Fordcombe now entered alone not part of Penshurst

            Private Resident:  Richard Turner Chafford                    Commercial: Turner & Co, paper makers, Chafford Mills


1878        2 February  

            Turner & Co

            1 Wove Roller for Wove Medium Bank

            2 sheets marked 4 times for 8vo

                        E Calzone


            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1878    Agreement dated 1 November 1878 between Richard David Rains Turner of Chafford Mills Penshurst Kent and Walter Monkton of Basted entered into co-partnership to carry on the business of Paper Makers under the style or firm of Messrs. R.D. Turner & Company at Roughway – this was extended for a further ten years 13 September 1881. [Walter Monkton had mortgaged Roughway in the sum of £1,500 5 January 1875 to Frank Green, Samuel Love Green and Henry Green of 193 Upper Thames Street, E.C. – (the Green’s were cousins of the Turners) [Roughway Deeds]


Extract From hand written note by C P Davies 20/9/59

PENSHURST – Chafford Paper Mills

Originally worked by -------Turner subsequently by relatives, one of whom removed the bank note paper dandy roll [watermarks are impressed on to the paper during manufacture by passage of the pulp over a brass cylinder, called a “dandy roll”, to which are affixed pieces of brass corresponding to the required watermark.  These brass pieces are called “bits”] to Roughway – taking this lucrative business with him, when his uncle [sic – this was in fact Henry Warden his brother-in-law] refused to make him a partner in the business.

                [C.P.Davies Collection at the Templeman Library, University of Kent, Canterbury ref: F123237/1]

                                [[C.P.Davies Collection at the Templeman Library, University of Kent, Canterbury ref: F123237/1]

Letter from Kenneth Reid, Essex [no date]

Dear Mr Davies: Many thanks for your letter and the information which have confirmed my somewhat uncertain impressions, which unless I check up as I have seen so many watermills over the years tend to get ‘telescoped’.  With regard to Chafford Mills, I did make a sketch from a distance in 1931, though only a slight one, and I must have lost it some years ago or forgotten to whom I had lent it.  At that date I am certain that no building older than the semi-industrial ones then there, c.1880, were to be seen because if a really old example survived I would have made a note of the fact.  The Main building was I am certain a long shed, in asbestos or corrugated iron, if not a blot on the surrounding landscape then no ornament.

From hand written note by C P Davies 20/9/59

PENSHURST – Chafford paper mills

V. little remains except the house. Paper mills was extensive, probably originally three wheels [per Mrs Hall] – a water wheel shaft remains, about twelve feet long – has castings for four sets of wooden arms only used occasionally sixty yrs. ago; bearing has worn out then and was 12’ high, breast – 7ft full water.  A turbine latterly drove some of the gear, the rest being driven by a steam engine.  This engine was not man enough to work the whole of the plant but cold drive all of it in sections as it were. Thus in short water time they wd. prepare stud, and having prepared it, work if off on the machine.

Originally a vat mill, had one old machine and one newer one.  Made good class writing paper, business papers, bank note paper.

The turbine had to be paid for twice as no evidence could be found for the first payment.

Run as ‘Turner & Co’ by people named Green, & subsequently for a brief period by Wiggins Teape, who having acquired the trade & trade name closed the mill; said to have put 200 people out of work – this mill was “the bread and butter of Fordcombe”.

Mrs Hall thought the earlier mill was s. of present site – on the other side of the approach road.

Mr Hall thought the transport problem helped to kill the mill – he said they were constantly going – daily – to fetch coal with a pack horse broad

wheeled wagon with straked tyres

[C.P.Davies Collection of Mill Memorabilia Kent at the Templeman Library, University of Kent, Canterbury ref: F123237/3 & 4]


1878    Register of Incoming Papers. 1876-94

            24 December Board 

            Roughway Mill  Anchor Dandy Roller at present at Somerset House to be sent to Roughway Mill for experimental working.

            These papers also refer to the transfer of the paper making from Chafford Mill to Roughway Mill  Received 28 December returned  8 January 1879

            [TNA IR79/53]


1879        Falkland Islands Queen Victoria 4d grey-black first issue variety on watermarked paper clearly showing a

            complete centred impression of the ‘A’ of  ‘CHAFFORD MILLS’

            [The Willy Moolenaar Collection of Falkland Islands Stamps was sold at Auction 7 February 2004 by Victoria Stamp Company

            They supplied the following information regarding the sale price 25/01/05: The stamp in question had an estimate of $750 but was unsold in that sale. 

            It sold privately after the sale.]              


1880        29 November          

Turner & Co :   One pair Wove Moulds two sheets each 18¾x 11⅞in bearing watermark as sample sheet

                                    Piroscafi Postali


                                     Ignazio & Vincenzo




            For Thos De La Rue Ltd

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1871-1880]


1880    Register of Incoming Papers. 1876-1894

            June 1880  Board  Watermarked Papers  In addition to the ‘Crown’ for 1d Postage three new papers to be used for all other adhesive stamps viz orb chemically prepared at 16/6 per ream including cost of roller.  Large Anchor 16/6 and VR also chemically prepared 20/- per ream rollers paid by the Revenue.  Paper to be gauged and tested at Mill.

            Contract with R D Turner & Co for 10 years from 1 November next.  [TNA IR79/53]


1881    3 April     Chafford House, Penshurst was uninhabited in the census return.


1881        3 April : Henry Warden (59) born Birmingham, Stafford, Head, Paper Manufacturer Employing 68 Persons & Farming 130 Acres 6 Men & 1 Boy

            is listed in the census living at Camden Park Oakfield Court, Tonbridge [RG11/914/32/7]


1882        3 April Richard D. R. Turner Head U (47) born Penshurst, Kent, Paper Maker Employing 10 Men 6 Boys And 26 Women listed

in the census at Roughway (Mill House) Wrotham, Kent [RG11/904/43/31]


1882    Post Office Directory of Kent – Fordcombe now entered alone not with Penshurst

            Just Turner & Co, paper makers, Chafford Mills in the commercial listing


1885    Craig’s Directory of Paper Makers :     Chafford Mill, No. 389, Turner & Co.

            Superfine tub-sized and Loft Dried Writing, Bank Post, Loan, Drawing, Bank Note and Cheque Papers, Copyings and Tissues.  2 machines and two vats

             [Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1886    Kent’s Paper Mills Directory published January 1st  

            Under the heading of Mills not in Working Order, to let, sell etc. list No 389 Chafford Mills Kent.   Made Writings and Drawing Papers, Hand and machine made, two machines, two vats, water and steam. The mill appears however in the following year’s edition and subsequent issues until 1904

            [Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1886    Fordcombe Parish Magazine – an account of the Chafford employees outing to Eastbourne on 10 July indicated that the fares were paid for by Mr Warden


1887    Turner & Co, paper makers, Chafford Mills,  Fordcombe

            [Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1890    Arjo Wiggins Archive has letters in the secretary's letter book, one was signed by E Barlow (a WT director) stating the intention to bid for the mill in 1890 when it was offered for sale.  They are internal letters between directors and mill managers.

1890    Letter written by W Green of Green Son & Waite 98 Albany Road, Old Kent Road

      London S.E. 20th Feby 1890

      Dear Mr Brown

            When you brought out your patent for improvement in watermarking you made trials on a Dandy Roll of zinc & shaded embossed wire at Messrs Turners Chafford Mill could you lay your hand on any of these trial sheets if so I should be much obliged if you would lend them to me.

            Your early reply will greatly oblige

            Yours faithfully

            W Green


1890        Particulars, Plan and Conditions of Sale of the very desirable Freehold Manufacturing Property so well known as

      THE CHAFFORD PAPER MILLS (together with the Goodwill and Fixed Machinery).

      Messrs. Langridge & Freeman at The Mart, Tokenhouse Yard, Near the Bank of England, E.C.           On Thursday Aug.21 1890.

            “The Mills are well adapted for the high-class and profitable trade (established about 100 years) now carried on by Messrs. Turner & Co., have good Water and Steam Power, 2 Machines and 2 Vats, and contain the following excellent accommodation:

            Rag Boiling, Washing, and Bleaching Rooms, Hand-made Paper Room, First and Second Machine Rooms, Sizing Room, 4 Air Drying Rooms, Machines Drying Room, Glazing Room, Sorting and Finishing Room, Manager’s and Foreman’s Office, Engine Room, 2 Store Rooms, Wrapper Room, Engine and boiler House, &c

            The Outbuildings  comprise Rag House, Heated by Hot Water, with Rag Store over, and Rage Dusting Room, Coal and Hide Stores, Gas House with Purifier and Retort, Gasomeeter, Millwright’s Shop, Size Making House, Smith’s Shop, Bleach Mixing Room, Store House for Chemicals, Rag Stores, &c.

            There is an abundant supply of Spring Water flowing direct into the Mills.

            [SWT has photocopy of particulars and Map from Michael Fuller who does not know where they came from]


1891    Kellys Directory

      Miss Warden is listed at Chafford House however in the census on 5 April she is listed with her brother and father Henry Warden Paper Manufacturer living at Oakfield Court, Camden Park, Tunbridge Wells [RG12/678/78]


1892    Penshurst Rates:

            Warden Henry  Owner & Occupier House Paper Mills Plant/Premises Meadow Land

                Chafford Mills also for Buildings  Land  Shooting  Chafford Farm and all the cottages.  [CKS]


1894    Kent & Sussex Courier, Friday March 2

            The annual dance at Chafford paper mills, Fordcombe, so eagerly looked forward to by many residents of the neighbourhood, took place on Friday evening last.         For the occasion the whole of the principal rooms of the building had been cleared of the piles of paper which usually cover it, and every part as well as the contiguous room used for refreshments, had been elaborately and cleverly decorated by the employees with paper of different colours and in all sorts of forms and devices, the whole presenting a most charming effect. By nine o’clock, upwards of 150 people had assembled, nearly all of whom were enthusiastic devotees of the art. Dance followed dance, in quick succession, but the dancers seemed to show no signs of fatigue; and as many as 14 sets of quadrilles or Lancers were going on at once.


1894    Craig’s Directory of Paper Makers :     Chafford Mill, No. 389, Turner & Co.

            Superfine tub-sized and Loft Dried Writing, Bank Post, Loan, Drawing, Bank Note and

            Cheque Papers, Copyings and Tissues.         2 machines and two vats

             [Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1895    12 Jan

            Turner & Co

            Changing Names on Ld Super Royal from W Medham to

                        R Turner                       and

                        Chafford Mills              RJ

            [CKS  Amies Collection Day Order Book 1895-1902]


1895    15 Jan

            Turner & Co

            Adding the word Limited 8 times to a wove roller and repaired same


1895    22 May

            Turner & Co

            Marking a pari of single sheet large laid post

            King Edward                            Monogram

            Hand Made                              JWC & S

            [CKS  Amies Collection Day Order Book 1895-1902]


1895    7 June

            Turner & Co

            Marking a pair of single Ld medium

            King Edwad                 Mark

            Hand Made                  WC & S

            Taking off R Turner & Co Chafford Mills and re marking a pair of Ld Super Royal Moulds with W Medham WM  Under mark

            [CKS  Amies Collection Day Order Book 1895-1902]


1895    7 June        

            Turner & Co

            Marking a pair single ld medium moulds

            King Edward                    Mark

            Hand Made                  J N C & S

             G Fryer 14½               J Tovey 14      H Pearce 8½           E Stevens ½           Total [Hours worked]  37½     


            Substituting W Medham and monogram for R Turner Chafford Mills in a pair of laid super royal moulds    

            F Burgess 2      E  Stevens ½                H Pearce 6½                            Total [hours worked]  9

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1895-1902] [Ledger paper Made by Chafford Mills]


1895    5 July             

Turner & Co

Taking off from single ld Post King Edward hand made & substituting W Medham & Monogram

            H Pearce       H Pearce 4  Repairing same  E Stevens ½       total [hours worked] 14

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1895-1902] - Ledger paper Made by Chafford Mills]


1895    8 July

            Turner & Co

            Single Large Laid Post

            Taking of King Edward Hand Made and substituting 2 sets        W Medham  &  W  under mark and repairing same moulds

            [CKS  Amies Collection Day Order Book 1895-1902]


1896    27 February

            Turner & Co

            Taking off from a pair of laid cap moulds W Medham & W M and substituting four lines

            King Edward                        J W C & S

            Hand Made                           4 times                      39½ hours[worked]

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1895-1902]


1896    27 Feb

            Turner & Co

            Taking off W Medham from a pair of Laid Cap and marking them King Edward Hand Made

            Monogram JWC & S under mark and repairing                          £3.7.3


1896    31 Oct

            Turner & Co

            New wove roller 17¼ x 4 x 4½ marked with 2 sheets 3 bills on each as under

                        Banco de Guatemala


            Cutting mark 22 wire

            3 1/16 between sheets

            This was re marked 8 Dec

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1895-1902]            


1896    31 Oct

            Turner & Co

            New Wove Roller 4 x 4½ x 17¼ bearing 12 sets of letters

                        BANCO DE GUATEMALA

                                     GUATEMALA                    £16.10

            1895    29 Oct

            [CKS  Amies Collection Day Order Book 1895-1902]


1896    24 Nov

            Turner & Co

            New deckle to a pair foolscap laid moulds and marking same four set as under

            W T & Co 1888 taken out

            Darnley                                    Trade Device

            Hand made                           D                                           33 hours

            H Pearce making and marking 21 hours

            E Stevens new deckle 16⅞ x 13⅜  12 hrs                               £2.11.8 

[CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1895-1902]


1897    Henry Warden of Chafford Penshurst in the County of Kent who died on 8th January 1897 at Chafford Penshurst aforesaid.  Probate to Richard Edward Warden of 20 Eastern Parade Southsea in the County of Hants a captain in the Royal Artillery the son  Edith Helen Warden of Chafford Penshurst aforesaid spinster the daughter and the Reverend Frederick Ernest Browett of 19 Lime Hill Road Tunbridge Wells in the County of Kent Clerk the nephew (sic)  the executors [In his will Frederick Ernest Browett son-in-law]    

            Gross value £42,603. 3s 7d               Net £41.251.13s 4d

Extract from the last three pages of seven:

‘And I declare that my trustees may postpone the sale and conversion of my real and personal estate or any part thereof for so long as they shall think fit (it being nevertheless my desire that the Chafford Paper Mills should be sold as speedily as possible) and that the rents and income to accrue from and after my decease of and from such part of my estate as shall for the time being remain unsold and unconverted shall after payment thereout of all incidental expenses and outgoings be paid and applied to the person or persons and in the manner to whom and in which the in­come of the moneys produced by such sale and conversion would for the time being be pay­able or applicable under this my Will if such sale and conversion had been actually made

            And I also declare that my trustees may let any hereditaments for the time being remain­ing unsold either from year to year or for any term of years not exceeding twenty one years in possession and not in reversion at such rents and subject to such covenants as they shall think fit and may accept surrenders of lease and tenancies fell timber and other trees standing on the said hereditaments whether for sale repairs or otherwise and generally may manage the same in such manner as they shall think fit and the proceeds of any timber sold by my trustees shall be considered as income and paid and applied accor­dingly

            And I authorise and empower my trustees if they shall in their absolute discretion think expedient so to do until the sale and realization of my Mills and Farm at Chafford and the effects thereon which nevertheless it is my desire shall be disposed of as soon after my decease as may be to make such arrangements as may seem to them desirable for carrying on the same until the sale thereof as aforesaid and for that purpose if they shall so think fit to employ in the said businesses the whole or any part of my capital which shall be employed therein at my decease and also such further part (if any) of my estate and effects as to my trustees shall seem proper and with liberty also to employ such managers agents and clerks in or about the said businesses and to allow to them such salaries and wages as my trustees shall think fit And I declare that my trustees may if they shall think fit leave any moneys invested at the time of my decease in the same investments in which they then may be and that all moneys liable to be invested under this my Will may be invested in or upon any stocks funds or securities Of or guaranteed by the Government of the United Kingdom or of any British Colony or Dependency or in stock of the Bank of England or the debenture or debenture stock or guaranteed or preference stock or shares of any Railway or other Company in Great Britain or India in­corporated by Act of Parliament or Royal charter and paying a dividend on its ordinary stock or shares or upon real or leasehold securities in England or Wales but not else­where such leasehold securities being held for a term whereof sixty years at least shall be unexpired at the time of such investment with power for my trustees from time to time, at their discretion to vary such investments And in lending money on. any mortgage secu­rity my trustees may accept whatever title or evidence of title shall appear to them sufficient and in particular may in the case of leasehold securities waive the production of the lessors title without being answerable for any loss arising thereby and my trus­tees may release any part of the property comprised in any mortgage security if satis­fied that the remaining property is a sufficient security for the money owing thereon And I also declare that my trustees may if they think fit lend money on any such security as aforesaid in conjunction with money advanced by any other person or persons by way of contributory loan and in such case the security may be taken in the point names of the several contributories or any two or more of them or in the point names of any two or more persons to be nominated by the several contributories or such other arrangement may be made in relation thereto as the trustees may think fit And I declare that my trustees or trustee for the time being of this my Will may at discretion make any sale subject to any conditions whether actually required by the state of the title or other circum­stances or not which may be deemed expedient and on loan of money may at their discre­tion fix the amount to be advanced not exceeding two thirds of the value at the time of making such loan as ascertained by a valuation obtained in the usual course of business of the property to be comprised in the security without regard to any rule limiting the powers of trustees in those respects and the trustees or trustee shall not be liable for any loss incurred through any act done or omitted to be done or the exercise of any discretion in reference to the matters aforesaid And the trustees for the time being of my Will may in their uncontrolled discretion instead of acting personally employ and pay a Solicitor or any other person to transact any business or do any act of whatever nature required to be done in the premises including the receipt and payment of money And I declare that the legacies to my servants and the annuity to the said Eleanor Butcher respectively bequeathed by this my Will shall be free of legacy duty IN WITNESS whereof I the said Henry Warden have to this my last Will and Testament contained in this and the preceding seven sheets of paper set my hand this twenty seventh day of March One thous­and eight hundred and ninety five   HENRY WARDEN  Signed and declared by the said Henry Warden the testator an and for his last Will and Testament in the presence of us both present at the same time who in his presence at his request and in the presence of-each other have hereunto subscribed our names as witnesses - WILLIAM READING Manager Chafford Mills Nr Tunbridge Wells OWEN E.READING Foreman Chafford Mills Nr Tunbridge Wells

On the 1st day of March 1897 Probate of this Will was granted to Richard Edward Warden Edith Helen Warden Spinster and The Reverend Fredrick Ernest Browett Clerk the executors

            [William Reading was connected with the mill for 28 years and Owen Reading was apprenticed at the mill in 1876 and received his cards of Freedom in 1882] [JVS]


1897    The Paper-Maker March 1897 Chafford Paper Mills, Penshurst, Kent – These mills were put up to auction on the 8th inst., at the Mart, Token-house Yard, E.C., by Messrs. Langridge & Freeman of Queen Street, E.C., and Tunbridge Wells.  The mills have been established more than a century.  They are adapted for a profitable and high-class trade, and were offered as a going concern with water and steam-power, two paper machines, family residence, etc.  The first bid was £2,500, and the highest offer being £6,100, the property was withdrawn. [Jottings from 50 years ago The Paper-Maker and British Paper Trade Journal March 1947 p.158]


1897    Oct

Turner & Co.

New pair wove moulds 31 ¾ “ x 16 1/8 “ for share warrants and marked with


[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901]


1897    Nov

Turner & Co.

Altering names on Ld. Double F.cap from W. Medham M to Darnley Hand Made and repairing same

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p174]


1898    July

Turner & Co.

New Deckle 27 ½ “ x 17 “ Laid Double

Foolscap Darnley Hand Made

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p 222]


1898    Nov

Putting 4 cutting marks and 16 dots over letters O on wove roller

KJOBENHAM PRIVABANKEN [CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p243]


1898    Dec

Turner & Co.

New wove roller 4’4” x 16⅛ “ marked two sheet, each bearing 8 set reversed to read from centre as under


Case No. 1501  


1898    Turner & Co. Ltd.

Taking R. Turner & dates from laid foolscap and marking instead four set of

Nissen Arnold, London

And repairing faces on same

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p254]


Turner & Co. Ltd.

New covering wove roller 16” in circum. & 4’ 4½” bearing 8 sets of marks       Waterlow & Sons Limited

New covering on a wove roller 22” circum. & 43½ bearing 4 set of marks        Harry S. King & Co. London

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p260]


1898    16 September

            The Companies Acts, 1862 to 1893     :           Turner & Company (Chafford Mills) Limited

            Nominal Capital £15,000 divided into 1500 shares of £10

            Amongst the company papers there are memos dated 15/12/1899, 12/12/1900 and a letter dated 19 December 1903 all watermarked     


                  CHAFFORD MILL          

[TNA BR31/8142/58831]                                                                                    


1898    Original Papermakers Recorder    22 September

Mr Herbert Green became Chairman and Managing Director.

The business became known as Turner & Co. Ltd with the ‘R Turner’ countermark still being used until November 1905. [JVS]


1899    From a price list of Machine Made Papers  dated August 1899

            Messrs Turner & Co. Ltd beg to hand you herewith their new revised Price List with samples of a few of their leading sorts.

            They are prepared to quote for any Tub Sized and Loft Dried Papers not included in the Price List which comprises chiefly stock sorts. 

            They are specially able to make small quantities of special paper whether watermarked or plain.

            Discount is in all cases 5% for monthly payments.


            Turner & Co., Ltd., Chafford Mills, Nr. Tunbridge Wells

            WaterMarks:                            R TURNER                 Commercial Posts & Banks

                                                           CHAFFORD MILLS                1st Quality

                                                            TURNERESQUE             Commerical Posts

                                                     389                                        2nd Quality

                                                            R TURNER

                                                           LEDGER PAPER                     Account Book Papers


                                                            R TURNER, KENT     Copyings, 1st Quality   

            [ NPM  SM20/44 Box  Paper Mill Price Lists]


1899    From an updated list tipped into an 1899 edition of Cross & Bevan [NPM SM20/28 Box 2]

            Mill No 389 Turner & Co Chafford Mills Nr Tunbridge Wells Kent

            Bank Post Drawing Paper &c

            Mill No 321  Turner R D & Co Roughway Mills Tonbridge Kent

            Special Watermarked Paper Only


1899    May

Turner & Co. Ltd.

New covering Laid medium roller 16⅜ x 4½ and marking same for two sheets as under

R Turner

Ledger Paper

Kent                             Trade Mark R.T.

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p268]


1899    June

R. Turner Ledger Paper Kent

Trade Mark R.T.

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p272]


1899    June

            Turner & Co.Ltd

            Foolscap Moulds Waterlow & Bros. & Layton Limited

            Brass edging on frames

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p272]


1899    June

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Marking four set of N&A under devices on Ld. F. cap

Nissen & Arnold

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p    274]


1899    July

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Repairing Demy moulds 4 set Nissen & Arnold 1844 N+A

Repairing & cleaning body, new covering and marking with four set as under Laid Demy Roller 44 ½ “ x 30 in circum.

R. Turner

Ledger Paper Kent        Trade Mark R.T.

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p275]


1899    July

Spiral Laid Roller 4’ 4” & 15 7/8” circum.

R. Turner

Ledger Paper

Kent                                                     T. Mark

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p279]


1900    Turner & Co. Ltd.

20 5/8” x 15 ¾” and marking same with 4 set G.C. & Co. 1900 and repairing

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p309]


1900    April

Turner & Co. Ltd.

New covering a wove roller 4’ 4” & 17 1/8” and marking with 8 set for medium

 SHIP IN A CIRCLE [also has illustrations]

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p310]


1900    May

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Marking a pair Wove Royal Moulds with 176 letters for coupons two letters of following inscription on each Royal Trans African Railway Co.

[this is share certificate]

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p312]


1900    June

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Nissen Arnold

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p317]


1900    June

Turner & Co. Ltd.

New Deckle to Laid Foolscap Nissen & Arnold

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p320]


1900    Aug.

12 envelope mould & new deckle for W. M. Chafford Mill

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p   325]


1900    Aug.

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Marking a pair of wove medium mould 22” x 18” for B.N. on each under B.N.B.C.

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p327]


1900    Nov.

Turner & Co. Ltd.

‘Octavo Albert Note’

And Turner & Co. Ltd. Altering deckle

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p    335]


1901    July

Turner & Co. Ltd.

[Ledger paper]

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p362]            


1901    Sept.

Turner & Co. Ltd.

R. Turner

Ledger Paper


[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p370]


1901    Oct.

Turner & Co. Ltd.

(provides machine wire)

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p371]


1901    Oct.

Goodall & Son Ltd. Camden Works

New pair two sheet Laid moulds 18” x 14” marked with tearing wires

Elsevir C.G.&S. Ltd.

Boxwood edges on ends of frames

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p371]


1901    Oct.

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Wm. Duff & Co.


[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p376]


1901    Nov.

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Darnley Hand Made

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p377]


1901    Turner & Co. Ltd.

J. W. C. & S.

Crown King Edward Hand Made

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p386]


1902    22 February               

Turner & Co Ltd

            Repairing laid moulds  Chafford Note

            J Tovey  8/-

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1895-1902 - Ledger paper Made by Chafford Mills]


1902    Feb.

Turner & Co. Ltd.

New covering Wove Roller

R. Turner Kent

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p387]


1902    Feb.

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Marking only a Wove Roller 4’ 4” & 17 1/8” with 8 set as under R. Turner Chafford Mills

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p388]


1902    Feb

Turner & Co. Ltd.

Repairing Laid Moulds

Chafford Note.

[CKS Amies Collection Ledger 1895-1901 p389]


1902    Original Papermakers Recorder  March

Report of the sudden death of Owen Reading, Manager of Chafford.  [JVS]

            [Owen Reading had been an apprentice at the mill from 1876 and received his Cards of  Freedom in 1882 working almost continuously at Chafford from that time.  He died of pneumonia following influenza aged only 41.  The name of Reading had long been associated with Chafford, his father William was connected with the mill for 28 years and under his management it achieved a high degree of prosperity.  Owen was at one point appointed Examiner of Paper in H..M.Stationery Office but he returned to the mill and shortly afterwards became Manager - obit information JVS]


1902    27 March                   

Turner & Co. Ltd

            New covering and Loan Wove Post Roller 4’ x 4’ x 16⅛ and marking with 8scts all in white wove as under

                                        R Turner

                                    Chafford Mills

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book 1895-1902 - Ledger paper Made by Chafford Mills]


1902    1st July

            In view of the recent outbreak of smallpox at Speldhurst the managing directors expect that all employees of the Company will be vaccinated except in cases where the Public Vaccinator considers it unnecessary.

            Arrangements will be made for the Public Vaccinator to attend at the Mill for the purpose.

            The vaccination is free.

                                    Herbert Green

                                    Managing Director

[HMA Letter Book Feb 26 – Sept 1902]


1902    29th July

            We shall be shut for next week & the week after & can spare at least a ton of fleshings if you think you want them now if so you can arrange with either Maidstone or Ashford (mentioning that you are doing so after consulting me about it)

                        Herbert Green

                        Managing Director

[HMA Letter Book Feb 26 – Sept 1902]


1904    18 March

            Turner & Co Ltd

            Marking of Wove Roller 6 sets

            R Turner  Kent

            Cover was taken off the rollers  £1.19.0

            [CKS  Amies Collection Order Book]


1905    Letter dated 21 Jan from Turner & Co Ltd  Chafford Mills Nr Tunbridge Wells  to The Registrar of Joint Stocks  Somerset House


            A little explanation is due as to the cause of delay in presenting the Annual Return of this Company.  The Return was left at the Post Office at Tunbridge Wells and the fee stamp paid on January 4th  on the understanding that it would be forwarded in due course to the proper Authority at Somerset House. The document has however just been returned to me, and I now forward it with apologies for delay.

            Should any communication on the above matter require reply from me., I should be glad to have it addressed as below.

            I am Sir,

Yours faithfully,

            Rob W Bullen

            Fordcombe, Tunbridge Wells

            [Water Mark        R TURNER

                                  CHAFFORD MILL]

            [A Robert Bullen aged 51 born Santisham Norfolk is listed as a Certified Elementary Teacher living at Penshurst in the 1901 Census index]


1905    Kent Kelly’s Directory:

R.Turner & Co. Ltd – Chafford Mill


1905   Original Papermakers Recorder    Turner & Co  (Chafford Mills) Ltd. Resolution passed for voluntary winding up of this company. 

            Mr Herbert Green of Hayle Mill, Maidstone and Mr Laurence Green of Oaklands, Maidstone, appointed liquidators. [JVS].


1905    Chafford Mill purchased by Wiggins Teape (1899) & Co. Ltd.  Sold in 1914. [See Appendix 2 below]

First experiments in Photographic Base made here (The Gateway, Centenary Issue 1961)

            [Simmons collection on Wind and Water Mills held at Imperial College Library].


1906-   Paper Mills Directory   

1912    Wiggins Teape & Co. Ltd – pure rags only, superfine tub sized and loft dried hand and  machine made writing, bank, post, loan, drawing, bank note and cheque papers, copyings and tissues


1906    Buckland Mill was keen to make photographic paper and when the mill became too busy to continue to make sample runs Chafford Mill, Fordcombe near Tunbridge Wells was purchased.  The mill had fallen into the hands of Hough, Hunt and Austen, all rag merchants, as liquidators.  It was an old mill with four vats and two machines, one 36 inches wide installed about 1820 and the other 42 inches wide installed about 1850.  The latter machine had been shown at the Great Exhibition, the 42 inch machine made a perfect sheet of paper [from a Paper on Buckland Paper Mills - Lewis Hobday]


1907    ‘A mill of historical interest, and one on which the progress of time has had less effect than in the majority of cases, is that belonging to Messrs. Turner known as Chafford Mills, in the Tunbridge Wells District.  1746 is the date given of its birth, and good spring water and its position on the river were probably the chief factors in the choice of location.  A machine was added to the vats in 1820 and another in 1846.  Superfine writings, best copying and tissues have been the leading qualities of paper made, and, owing to the fact that they have been similar to the hand-made papers, and produced under the old style, the alterations in the mill have been conspicuous by their absence.

            [The Paper Trade by A Dykes Spicer 1907 p 185]


1910    Mill Directory                Chafford Mill (No 389) near Tunbridge Wells, Kent

Pure Rag Papers only, superfine tubsized and loft dried. Hand & Machine made Writings, Bank Post , Loan, Drawing,

Bank Note & Cheque Papers, Copyright and Tissues

2 PM’s & 2 Vats         


1912    A Jos. Turner represented Turner & Co. Chafford Mills in 1912 at the Annual Dinner of the Papermakers Association of Great Britain

held at the Prince's Hall Hotel, London. [Information Jeff Woolgar]


1914    Kent & Sussex Courier and Southern Counties Herald    Friday 27th March 1914

Friday Next  Fordcombe, Kent.  Messrs Brackett & Sons are instructed to sell by public auction at the Swan Hotel, Tunbridge Wells

on Friday 3rd April 1914 at 4 p.m. (unless previously disposed of by private treaty), the well-known freehold property

CHAFFORD MILLS.  Consisting of very extensive buildings and premises, situated on the banks of the river Medway

which are adaptable for the purpose of any industrial undertaking requiring water power, The Mill House, 18 freehold cottages

and a parcel of building land.

The total area comprises about 20a[acres] 1r[rod] 27p[perches].

Solicitors: Messrs. Markby, Stewart and Co  57, Coleman Street, EC 

Auctioneers offices 27 and 29 High Street, Tunbridge Wells and 34 Craven Street, Charing Cross W.C.


Extract from article that appeared in the Kent & Sussex Courier 5 February 1993.


Chafford Mill, closed in 1913 and demolished in 1930 was a busy local industry and the main employer. The former corn mill switched to papermaking

at the end of the 17th century.            Half the village population worked there, and the annual papermakers’ ball became the principal event in Fordcombe’s

social calendar. Mr Wellards says: ‘The main reason for the closure of the mill was transport problems. Every day teams of horses hauled wagons

laden with coal for the mill furnace from Ashurst station. The strong beasts had to lean backwards and pick their way carefully as they descended

the steep winding lane from Fordcombe to the river. The finished paper was taken to Penshurst station’.  In its prosperous times under the ownership

of Mr Warden, Chafford mill won the contract to make paper for Bank of England notes and postage stamps.   Pay was good and papermakers

could earn a living wage by working only one or two days a week. But there were hard times too, and sometimes candles burned in the mill late at night

to meet a rush order.  Chafford paper’s fine texture was credited to the spring water used in its manufacture; the river was used only to power the

machinery through a 24ft wooden wheel.  This paper had another special quality, discovered when letters written by Mr Turner an owner of the mill,

 to Lord Hardinge resisted India’s voracious white ants.  As a result, the mill won the Government of India’s paper contract, a valuable asset

which it passed on to Wiggins Teape. They found the heavy hauling at Fordcombe too much of a problem and moved the business to Dover.





Appendix I


Entries from the Church Rates for Penshurst

CKS  1721-60  [P287/5/1]  1760-1801 [P287/5/2] Film 956]








Oliver Stidolph   (Hall Borough)




Richard Woodhams for  Fulling Mill Island




Wm Woodhams for Chafford




Oliver Stidolph




After this date it did not mention Chafford but Wm Woodhams was just listed -  I assume this was for Chafford House




Oliver Stidolph




Wm Woodham for Fulling Mill Island (Middle Ward)




Wm Woodhams




Wm Stidolph




After this date occupiers were listed alphabetically not by property




Wm Stidolph




Wm Stidolph Fulling Mill Island




Thos Woodhams Stanbridge pt Chafford & Chipstead Woods




William Stidolph




William Stidolph Fulling Mill Island




Thos Woodhams as above




Wm Stidolph Mill Island




Thos Woodhams as above




Wm Stidolph  (Town)




Occupier late Wm Stidolph Mill Island




Wm Stidolph or Occupier




Thos Woodhams was paying for late Stidolphs




Wm Stidolph or occupier for Mill Island




John Woodhams for pt Chafford




John Woodhams for Chafford




Occupier late Wm Stidolph Houses Paper Mill Island




Messrs Damiza or occupier of Mill Island




Mess Demeza (this was listed under letter 'S' where previous entries for Stidolph had been shown)




Thos.Woodhams  land late Stidolph




Mr Elgar Mill Island




Mr Ellgar




Mr Thos Elgar (this could have been Mrs)




Mr Thos Elgar  (this could have been Mrs)




Mr Willm Elgar




Thos Woodhams still paying for Fordcombe & Mill Lane late Stidolph




Wm Woodham  Chafford




Mr Wm Elgar




Mr Willm Elgar




Thos Woodhams still paying for Fordcombe & Mill Lane late Stidolph




Wm Woodham  Chafford




Mr Wm Elgar




Thos Snatchall for part Chafford




Mr Wm Turner




Mr Wm Turner




Mr Wm Turner




Mr Wm Turner




Then gap in rates until 1802




Mr  Wm Turner  Mill Island




Mr Wm Turner




Mr  Wm Turner  Mill Island




Mr Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Wm Turner




Turner George & Rd for Mill




Wm Turner




Turner George & Rd for Mill




Turner William




Turner Geo & Richd




Turner George Richd Willm




Turner Willm




Turner George & Richard




Turner William




Turner Messfs




Turner Messfs




Turner Richd


£4.6. 7½d


Richard Turner


£4.0. 0¾d


Turner Rich Esq




Turner Rich Esq for land




Turner R.D.R. Esq




Warden Henry




                Land Tax for Penshurst  Film 124


Occupiers late Wm Stidolph


Mr Ellgar


Mr Thos Elgar


Mr Wm Elgar


Mr Wm Turner


Land Tax for Penshurst from Original Papers at CKS  4 February 2005












¼ ly assessment



Mr W Stidolph






Stidolph Wm

Stidolph Wm





Stidolph Willm





1784 18/6

William Stidolph





1785 1/7

William Stidolph




D &C 1787


Occupier late W.Stidolph





1789 18/7

Mr Ellgar

Messrs Demeza & Stroud





Mr Ellgar






Mr Tho Elgar






Mr Elgar






Mr Wm Ellgar






Mr Wm Ellgar






Mr Wm Ellgar





1797 10/7

Mr Wm  Turner






Mr Willm Turner




No watermark diff.paper and layout


Turner Mr Willm

Wm  Turner



W  ELGAR 1797


Mr Wm  Turner




W  ELGAR 1798


Mr Wm  Turner






Mr Wm  Turner




M B 180?


Mr Wm  Turner






Mr Wm  Turner






Mr Wm  Turner






Mr Wm  Turner






Mr Wm  Turner






Mr Wm  Turner





1811 8/11

Mr Wm  Turner






Mr Wm  Turner


£5.9.0 only the one entry





Land Tax for Hall Borough Penshurst CKS Ref:  QRP1/295 Film 125







¼ ly assessment



Mr Elgar

Mrs Kember





Mr Taylor & Mr Swain






Mr Elgar

Mrs Kember





Mr Elgar

Geo Demeza &

Wm Stroud





Mr Elgar






Mr Elgar






Mr Elgar






Mr Elgar




W ???


Mr Elgar

Mich Saxby





Wm Turner (in place of Elgar)




W ELGAR 1795


Wm Turner (in place of Elgar)




W ELGAR 1796


Wm Turner (in place of Elgar)




W ELGAR 1796


Wm Turner (in place of Elgar)




W ELGAR 1798


Wm Turner






Mr Elgar

Mr Saxby





Wm Turner






Wm Turner






Wm Turner
















? Hinton Mill 1806














Turner William

Rent 52   



G & R TURNER 1821








Appendix II


Comments regarding the demise of the Mill  written by Daven Chamberlain formerly of Wiggins Teape


The must useful information in the archive is the mill accounts for all of the WT Mills from around 1890-1930, with a break in the late 1890s.  These include

all the account details for Chafford. These show conclusively why it was closed.


That Wiggins Teape asset stripped the place [Quarterly 22] is a ridiculous thing to suggest, when you consider the age of the machinery and that they

 found the heavy hauling at Fordcombe too much trouble.  The truth is far simpler – it was a loss making mill.  At a period when the main WT mills

 (Dover and Chorley) were both making profits of around £20k per year, Chafford hovered between a positive and negative balance of under £900 per annum.

There was no way a company like WT could afford to keep the mill going under these circumstances.


There are letters in the archive to show that WT were interested in purchasing the mill in 1890 when it was first put up for auction, so interest in the mill went

 back a long way. It is probable that the interest was related to WT’s apparent interest in photographic papers, which, according to the Website

 (need to check source) went back to the 1890s also.  For some reason they did not get the mill then (probably too expensive) [In 1897 mills were put up

for auction. Lowest bid was £2,500 highest was £6,100. The property was withdrawn from sale. Mentions auctioneer’s name WPTR 1947 mentions

info from 50 years ago][ WPTR    1947 refers to an article in The World's Paper Trade Review of 1947.This was a major paper journal until it's  demise in 1972].

 Instead WT got it from the liquidators in 1905 when it failed to sell for a third time at auction.


If the WT interest in photographic papers is correct, and we know Chafford were making a photographic grade in the 1800s (calotype), then we have

 the most probably reason for it’s purchase.  It may have been to asset strip – but only intellectually.  The plant was too old to be of interest. 

My problem with this idea is that Calotype paper manufacture appears to have been followed around the middle of the 19th century –

but there is no record in the article [Quarterly 22] about the end of the century when WT became interested in the mill.


It is known that WT ran experiments around 1911 at the mill (info from a prospectus issued by WT in 1919 when they underwent capital flotation). 

The Directory Listing in 1910 however does not list photographic papers – only general rag and other high quality grades.  So photographic manufacture

at the mill under the auspices of WT was probably only at an experimental level.





Intercambios de enlaces
Copyright Sarah Tanner 2008