West Hall Folklore

Home > West Hall Folklore

West Hall Folklore

The Millers Stump of Westhall

A long time ago in 1763 it was late at night very dark, cloudy and a sea mist covered the area. The miller of Cleadon, John Turnbull was carrying a sack of flour to Fulwell mill because the mill sails at Fulwell had broke and they needed the flour urgently.

As the miller was walking down the avenue from the big house, he stopped beside the big tree at the back of the lodge for a rest. When he lifted up the sack and put it on his back, it snagged on a branch which made a small hole. As the miller walked away it left a trail of flour behind him.

The local squire left the big house in his horse drawn carriage and told his driver to be quick.

As the driver raced down the avenue in the dark mist he saw the trail of flour. He used this as a guide and whipped the horses to go faster, not knowing that the miller was only 60 yards in front.

The miller had to step around a large elm tree (near where the toilet block now is) and just as he did this the horse drawn carriage caught up with him and ran him down but didn’t stop. The miller was killed and his body wasn’t found until the next day.

When the squire found out about the miller’s death he saw that the elm tree stopped people seeing all the way down the avenue, he had the tree chopped down and ever since then it has been called the Millers Stump.

The miller’s wife cursed the tree stump and said that it would never grow tall again.

Sometimes when the nights are dark and just right the miller still tries to make the last journey of his life again to deliver a sack of flour to Fulwell mill.