|The Town Mill looking south|
Mill Bridge links Old Cross and The Wash, so called because of its tendency to flood in bygone days.
Until 1967 a mill stood on the site that is now gardens next to Castle Hall. It is believed that a mill stood on this site for nearly 900 years, one being recorded in The Domesday Book. In 1855 the mill was bought by Edmund Illot, who put his 14 year old son in charge. Hertfordshire was a major corn producing area in the 18th and 19th Centuries and Hetford benefitted from it's links with London via the river and a thiving market existed in the town.
Until December 1893, tolls used to be charged for vehicles and animals crossing the bridge.
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Wickham's Brewery stood on land now occupied by Town Mill Mews. For many years the site was derilict and has only recently been developed.
|Mill Bridge looking north|
Mill Bridge was the site of McMullen's first brewery, which stood on the site now occupied by The Woolpack PH. The brewery moved to it's current headquarters in Hartham Lane in 1890. The orinigal Woolpack stood on the corner of Mill Bridge and Old Cross until 1927, when it was demolished as the road was widened for the new Mill Bridge.
The first Castle Cinema opened in 1914 between the town mill and the Castle gates. It was modernised in 1939 but was damaged by a V2 flying bomb that landed in 1944. It was repaired and re-opened in 1946, eventually closing in 1959 and was demolished after standing empty for many years.
On 2nd July 1944 a V2 flying bomb fell on Mill Bridge causing widespread damage. The premises sustaining most damage were Illots shop next to the Town Mill, Nicholls Greengrocer and Rush's leather goods, which stood on what is now the green next to the Castle Hall.
Period photographs courtesy of Hertford Museum