Collection FWGC - Frank W Gregory Collection

FWG 02684 - 03116 Illustrations up to A3 FWG 04513 - 04599 Frank's mill visits notebooks FWG 06500 - 06999 Prints Bloxham Grove Mill, Bloxham, in a good order Quarter bar supports, Bloxham Grove Mill, Bloxham Goring Mill, Goring, in the street scene Machinery, Bloxham Grove Mill, Bloxham Post mill, Chinnor, disused and on the point of collapse Miniature open trestle mill Waterwheels in tandem, Waltham Chase Mill, Bishop's Waltham Gailey's Mill, Kingsclere, in a disused condition Stanford End Mill, Stratfield Saye, in a disused condition Stone floor, post mill, Chinnor Watermill, Little Woolstone, disused Sail and fantail damage, Cobstone Mill, Ibstone Post mill, Stokenchurch, in working order Wreckage, post mill, Stokenchurch Post mill, Stokenchurch, derelict Nixey's Mill, Brill, in a good external condition Nixey's Mill, Brill, in a good external condition
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Original Digital object not accessible

Reference code



Frank W Gregory Collection


  • c 1800 - 1998 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

Over 100 boxes

Name of creator


Biographical history

Frank W Gregory was widely regarded as on the foremost authorities on mills and milling in the UK. He was brought up in Brighton and developed a fascination for vernacular buildings, especially windmills, whilst on childhood rambles with his family in the 1920s. This together with an interest in the geology and industrial archaeology of Sussex and the South Downs, developed in his teens, motivated his lifelong quest to discover as much as possible about windmills and watermills and their place in manufacturing and production within the rural economy.

A woodwork teacher by profession, Frank travelled widely, visiting, recording, surveying and studying mills in Sussex and later throughout the UK and abroad, mostly for his own pleasure. After the war he carried out mill surveys for local authorities and also for the SPAB Mills Section, which he had joined in 1948. As a keen member of The International Molinological Society he went on many foreign mill tours and his reputation became known worldwide.

Frank used his practical skills and experience as a woodwork teacher to teach himself the craft and practice of a millwright, and soon became the acknowledged expert on traditional methods of mill restoration and conservation. The first Sussex windmill he helped to restore was Nutley Post Mill in the Ashdown Forest, and he went on to help in the restorations of Polegate, Shipley, High Salvington, Jill Mill at Clayton and Park Watermill at Bateman


Archival history

The collection was sorted out by Joy Ford, Frank's daughter, her husband Chris, and Peter and Joan Hill. It was left by Frank to the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum. Much of the collection was given to the Mills Archive to be catalogued between 2008 and 2010; some has been retained here, while other material has been scanned and returned.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Scope and content

Very large collection of documents and images, including original handwritten notes and drawings, relating to wind & water mills from many countries (mainly UK).

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Conditions governing access

Material transferred to the Mills Archive may be consulted free of charge at the archive; please email to arrange an appointment. Some material is still retained at the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum; please contact them to consult it.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Language and script notes

Finding aids

Existence and location of originals

Where the Mills Archive holds only digital copies, the originals are held by the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum.

Existence and location of copies

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Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion




Archivist's note

Collection level description revised by Luke Bonwick and Nathanael Hodge, 2012.

Digital object (Master) rights area

Digital object (Reference) rights area

Digital object (Thumbnail) rights area

Accession area

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Physical storage

  • Shelf: FF1
  • Shelf: U 600
  • Shelf: V 300
  • Box: Miscellaneous Items Box
  • Box: F W Gregory Miscellaneous Box 1
  • Box: F W Gregory Miscellaneous Box 2