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BRUSHER MILLS, Brockenhurst, Hampshire. (See comments box for story).

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Roy Pledger on November 30, 2011

Brusher Mills grave.

Roy Pledger on January 2, 2012

The Snakecatcher Inn at Brockenhurst, in the New Forest tells the story about an interesting local character who died in 1905 at the age of 67 years. Harry Mills, who was better known as Brusher Mills, lived in an illegal shack in the forest for almost 30 years, actually the shack burned down just one day before the 30 years required to claim the home and land upon which it stood under ancient forest law. He was known as Brusher simply because of the meticulous way in which he brushed the village cricket pitch. His main occupation however, was that of snake catcher and he is credited with having killed a total of 3,186 New Forest adders, which he sold to London Zoo as live feed for the larger snakes. Mills was buried in the old churchyard just outside the village where a very fine marble stone marks his grave. The stone depicts a carving of Mills near his shack and several snakes.

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  • Uploaded on November 30, 2011
  • Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works
    by Roy Pledger