Repair work to start at historic windmill

The sails were last removed back in 2000 (pictured) at the start of a major restoration which returned the mill to working order
The sails were last removed back in 2000 (pictured) at the start of a major restoration which returned the mill to working order
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Repair work on Heage Windmill is due to start this week with the hope of getting the landmark operational again by Easter 2016.

Wet rot was discovered in the cap and fan staging structures of the windmill in mid-August and a public campaign was launched to raise the money for the repairs.

After the discovery it was decided to cease operating the mill until repairs were completed, although the mill has remained open to visitors.

Trustee of Heage Windmill Society, Alan Gifford, said: “As a first step the sails will be removed by a local contractor, assisted by our volunteers, and will be taken into a secure local workshop, which has been offered to the Trust free of charge.

“There, as part of our cost reduction programme, the six sails will be cleaned and refurbished and painted by our own team of maintenance volunteers, the millwright only being involved if any major issues are detected.

“This work will continue all winter and should be completed well before Easter.”

The trust sought an independent consultant’s opinion on the best approach as a way of reducing the cost of the repairs - initially thought to be about £90,000.

As a result a different and less expensive approach was adopted and the trust plans to place an order for the work to commence by the end of the month.

More information about the repairs and details on how to donate to the appeal can be found on the windmill society’s website at www.heagewindmill.org.uk.