Our History

 The Mill is a converted watermill building. It stands in ten acres of woodland, with meadow, pond, swamp and stream. Located in the village of Forest Green, the Mill has been modernised and extended over many years. 

 The watermill itself was built at the beginning of the nineteenth century, continuing to operate as a corn mill until the early 1920's, at which time the grounds were bought by a wealthy widow as a site for her future residence. 

In 1929 the site was sold to the headmaster at St Marylebone Grammar school. 

 From that time, the Mill become a charitable trust. The then trustees transferred the benefit of the trust to the pupils receiving an education at William Ellis School. 

The trustees have encouraged it's conversion, with much voluntary work, into a year-round residential field centre.   

About William Ellis

The Founder of the school

William Ellis was the son of a French refugee and Italian mother. He started work at Lloyds of London when he was approximately 13, rising to Chief Manager of Indemnity Mutual Marine Assurance Company by the age of 27.  


He was a member of the Utilitarian Society and associated himself with the school of economists led by John Stuart Mill, the founder. Their main interest was the improvement of education and teaching political economy in schools – unusual at that time. He was even asked to give lectures to the Royal children of the the time by the Prince Consort. He founded his first 'Birkbeck school' in 1848 and then founded five further schools at his own expense. 


William Ellis School in North London is the last surviving school. 


If you would like more information about the history of William Ellis School, please click on the link below. 


The History of William Ellis School