Memories from the mill

IPSWICH'S tallest building is nearing completion.

David Kindred

IPSWICH'S tallest building is nearing completion.

“The Mill” can be seen from all around the town. This massive structure is on the site where Cranfield Brothers Mill operated from when the company was founded by John Cranfield in 1884.

I have featured memories of the mill in recent Kindred Spirits. David Markwell recalled being reprimanded for not addressing Mr Wadwell then the company secretary as “Sir” during his interview.

Peter Staples of Berkeley Close, Ipswich said: “I went to Cranfield's in 1946 as a Junior Clerk around seventeen years before Mr Markwell; this was my first job straight from school.

“I was interviewed by Mr H Lowe who was the secretary, I found him to be a very nice man. Mr Sam Armstrong was the Managing Director assisted by his son Douglas.

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“Mr Bob Gamble was Mill Manager of the two mills. Mr Lowe died in 1947/8 and his replacement was Mr George Wadwell from Yorkshire.

“As a junior I did not get involved much with Mr Wadwell, however in 1949 I received a letter from him which reads, 'I have to inform you that as from July 1, 1949 your salary will be at the rate of �3 per week'.

“After three years I transferred to the wages department. On Friday mornings I accompanied Mr David Ling the manager to Lloyds Bank to collect the cash for payout.

“All the wages in those days were paid in cash. We had to leave by a side door and jump into a taxi in Lloyds Avenue for the return to Cranfield's.”

“In those days the company had a splendid Sports Centre at Bourne End, close to Bourne Park, which included football and cricket pitches, tennis courts and bowls green. We also had a football team run by Mr Fred Pegg Jnr, who worked in the transport garage. “Apart from me all the team was from the transport section. On one occasion we won a cup by playing Melton St Audrey's at Woodbridge.

“I had to leave Cranfield's in 1950 as I was then 18 and due to join the RAF for my National Service. I have fond memories of my four years at Cranfield's, 1946-50.”

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