Aylesford Paper Mills – Early view of East Mill

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6th August 2018 at 13:40 #856

Kevin Harrild
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I worked at East Mill from 1988 to 2008 most of which in the engineering project role, and have some older photos of the site which I hope will be interesting to remember it now it has been mostly demolished.

I found this photo online just from a google image search of the newly built Paper Mill at Aylesford, which must have been circa 1922.   The East Mill was built first, from 1920 when Albert E Reed Purchased the land next to the river, which had previously been a Great War Army camp.  Interestingly the Huts from that camp as they were known lasted to the early 1990s when they were finally demolished.

The Photo Show No 1 & 2 Machine House, the long central building with No 2 drive Annexe facing the camera with the lower roof. Behind the Machine house you can see the brick Chimney of the original Boiler house, this had Lancashire shell boilers two of which survived as condensate tanks to the end of the mill circa 2010.  At the Left of the Machine house is the original finishing department, the Salle.  At the Right of the Machine house, is the original first 2 bays of the Beaters, the mill being a Kraft mill at the time.

No’s 3&4 Machine house was built in 1925, which was a similar length machine house but slightly wider in footprint, so this photo must predate that.  It was built against Nos 1&2 Machine house.   Nos 5 &6 Machine house went up in 1933-35, but the mill had expanded greatly by then.

The chimneys came down in the 1980s before I worked at the Mill, but when we were building the new Effulent Plant in 2003 on its previous site, we found the remains of the flues and brick based for both this and the Stirling Boilerhouse Chimneys.   At 5 metres down digging foundations, we also found the remains of the Ash conveyors!

I’m not sure when the Maidstone branch railway line was put in, the but the fence might show its boundary. Our site ran close up against the platform of what would be New Hythe station.

If anyone knows the providence of this photo, please let us know, especially if there are any more.

25th September 2018 at 14:03 #860

Kevin Harrild
Participant

Photo f Aylesford Paper MillPhoto added!

25th September 2018 at 19:18 #862

Kevin Harrild
Participant

Aylesford Nos 1 and 2 Machine

25th September 2018 at 19:19 #863

Kevin Harrild
Participant

Aylesford Paper Mill Boiler House

25th September 2018 at 19:21 #864

Kevin Harrild
Participant

Aylesford Paper Mills Beater House

25th September 2018 at 19:22 #865

Kevin Harrild
Participant

APM No 2 machine in build

25th September 2018 at 19:23 #866

Kevin Harrild
Participant

Aylesford No2 Machine in build

25th September 2018 at 19:24 #867

Kevin Harrild
Participant

Aylesford no2 machine complete

25th September 2018 at 19:31 #868

Kevin Harrild
Participant

I’ve now added some photos that I found on google maps, these had been added a few years ago with a tag of a mill employee –  I take it there were found when the mill was closing down.

The photos fantastically show the build of Nos 1 & 2 Machines which were originally Walmsley Machines.  No 1 was taken out in the mid 1970’s but No2 was making paper in its 1975 rebuild configuration with open gears and brass bearing on the 1-3 pre-dryers until the late 1990s when she was finally shut.

The Boiler house shows the Lancaster shell boilers, and their makers name from Dudley.  They were twin fire tube and as I mentioned above 2 remained as condensate ‘Hot Wells’ for many years.

The Beaters were used in the original Kraft Mill, and you can see in that photo the parts of No 1 Gantry that carried a crane that lifted bales of pulp off barges direct into the beaters.   There would be 4 gantries in total by the end of the kraft use.

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