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Matthew William Mills (1868-1937)
1937 Obituary 
MATTHEW WILLIAM MILLS was chairman of directors of Messrs. James Mills and Company (Engineers), Ltd., of Moss Iron Works, Heywood, Lanes. He was born at Heywood in 1868 and served his apprenticeship there from 1886 to 1890, with Messrs. James Mills, of Moss Foundry, a firm established by his father and concerned chiefly with millwrighting work. He was subsequently made assistant works manager.
In 1897 the works were closed, and Mr. Mills went into business on his own account under the title of James Mills and Company. The business, which was formed into a limited liability company in 1923, with Mr. Mills as chairman of directors, specialized in mechanical apparatus for sewage purification. In 1918, Mr. Mills was joint patentee of a new type of apparatus, a development of the activated sludge process, for the mechanical aeration of sewage; the process was afterwards very widely adopted. The firm of Ames Crosta Mills and Company, Ltd., of Nottingham, was formed in 1926 for developing the sales of machinery for the process and of other sewage purification machinery, and Mr. Mills was one of the original directors. He was associated with both firms until the time of his death, which occurred on 5th October 1937.
Mr. Mills, who held many original patents in connection with sewage purification, was elected a Member of the Institution in 1928.