Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Two Waters Mill

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Two Waters at Boxmoor, Herts.

This was a mill site at the time of the Domesday Book (1086) and had been so for at least 100 years prior to that.

The mill was also known as Top Mill.

1763 First made paper

From 1791 was used by the Fourdriniers.

It was recorded as Mill No. 400 in the Excise list.

From 1818 the owners were the Grand Junction Canal Co.

By 1818 occupied by Thomas Nichols

1838 Dissolution of the Partnership between Montague Stevens, John Dovey Stevens, and George Field, in the trade or business of Paper-Makers, carried on at the Two Waters Mills, near Hemel Hempstead, in the-county of Hertford, and elsewhere, under the firm of M. and J. D. Stevens; the business was carried on by John Dovey Stevens[1]

From 1853 George Watkin Hayes used the mill; there were four beating engines for one 62” machine.

c1856 Installed a compound, or two-cylinder Wolf beam engine, made at Watford by Tidcombe.

1867 Patent to George Watkin Hayes, of Two Waters Mills, Hemel Hempstead, in the county of Herts, for the invention of "improvements in machinery for making paper."[2]

1877 Company liquidated. George Watkin Hayes and Robert Horsfall.[3] '...Liquidation by Arrangement or Composition with Creditors, instituted by George Watkin Hayes, of Two Waters, Hemel Hempstead, and Robert Horsfall, of Eaton House, Watford, both in the county of Hertford, carrying on business in copartnership as Paper Manufacturers, under the style or firm of G. W. Hayes and Co., at Two Waters aforesaid, and Frogmoor, near Hemel Hempstead...'[4]

The mill was then used by John Dickinson and Co for 7 years to prepare esparto half stuff.

Lease extended to 1887.

From 1888 the mill was disused for a while.

The Universal Barrel Co started experimental work in the mill on a process invented by Mr Thame.

A considerable part of the mill was burnt down a few months after the Barrel Company started work, although a large part of the old mill remained[5]

Thame and Sanguinetti made 300 paper barrels a day there until 1893.

Most of the machinery was sold off and the mill used for processing wool.

1918 November. The mill had been used for distilling a petrol substitute and was destroyed in a violent explosion that shook the town of Hemel Hempstead leaving only the chimney.[6]

1919 Advertisement for Carper, Faulkner and Co at Two Waters Mill selling Boiler Fuel Oil in drums and barrels.[7]

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The London Gazette Publication date:10 April 1838Issue:19606 Page:866
  2. The London Gazette 2 August 1867
  3. Morning Post - Saturday 22 December 1877
  4. The London Gazette Publication date:31 July 1877 Issue:24488 Page:4522
  5. The Engineer 1892/04/08
  6. North Bucks Times and County Observer - Tuesday 26 November 1918
  7. Leeds Mercury - Tuesday 05 August 1919