A Brief History

Woodbridge was one of the first tide mills in the country, and was unquestionably the last one working – operating for well over 800 years.

The earliest record of a tide mill on this site by the River Deben is in 1170. It was owned by the Augustinian Priors for around 350 years until Henry VIII confiscated it, and for the next 28 years it was in royal ownership. Elizabeth I sold it to Thomas Seckford whose family owned it for over 100 years, followed by several private owners. In 1793 the present mill was built on the site of earlier ones. By the 1950s it had become the last working tide mill in the country, but in 1957 finally closed. It was saved in 1968, restored and opened to the public in 1973. Recently, further protection and restoration work has brought it back into use as a fully working tide mill as well being a fascinating and remarkable living example of our industrial and cultural heritage.

Pay a visit to the mill and discover the entire fascinating history!