A Short History of Bernards Heath

Windmills on Bernards Heath

Windmills on Bernards Heath - Seller 1676
From "Four County Maps of Hertfordshire"

Bernards Heath is the highest part of St Albans and in 1675 John Roberts leased a windmill on the Heath to Samuel Turner, miller, of the Abbey (water) Mill. A survey of about the same time shows three windmills close together. In 1687 the Lord of the Manor of Sandridge leased to William Frankling a parcel of lande lately enclosed out of the waste or common called Barnet Heath on which a Windmill hath been lately erected and built a cottage and outhouses and buildings. The rate book for the same year lists three millers, William Frankling, Thomas George and Michael Sanders, each of whom paid a rate of 3 shillings. William Frankling was also shown as occupying Windmill Close. William Frankling died in about 1696 as the windmill and close was then occupied by Widow Frankling, while Michael Sanders occupied the other two windmills from 1698. In 1702 William Franklin junior was paid 140 for the windmill by John Anderson, mealman of St Albans. John died in 1719 and left his loving wife Susan my messuage, outhouses, windmill, yards, orchards, pigthle ... on Bernards Heath.

The 1726 estate map shows three windmills. The one occupied by Widow Anderson is shown as a post mill, John Turner (of the Abbey Mill) held one smock mill, while John Dodnel of Rightbourn Mill (probably John Dagnall of Redbourn Mill) held the other. Three mills are shown on John Warburton's map which was published in 1746 A lease of 1752 refers to Gallows Field and the piece of land where the windmill had stood - and there are no later references to working windmills on the Heath.

Next: The Beginnings of Windmill/Heath Farm

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