Author: Luke Bonwick
Restoration work to this 17th-century windmill began with the removal of the sails in December 2008, and is on target for completion this summer.
The mill, which is owned by Buckinghamshire County Council, is undergoing major repair to improve its appearance as a local landmark as well as to safeguard its historic timbers and machinery. The experience of visitors to the mill will be enhanced as they will be able to climb the new tail ladder to reach the mill body, as the miller would have done until the 1920s when the windmill ceased working. During the course of the project the mill’s huge windshaft and brake wheel, of oak and elm, were removed from the site for repair, and have recently been put back in place. The mill’s roof will be restored to its former ogee profile – one of the features that give this post mill its distinctive appearance. The windmill is expected to re-open to visitors later this year.
In a recent survey, the mill’s principal timbers were dated using dendrochronology, or tree-ring dating. The earliest dateable timber, the meal beam in the front wall of the body, was found to have been felled during the winter of 1685-6. Two later phases of timbers were also found, indicating that the mill was substantially rebuilt during the 18th century.
To find out more about the windmill, and the progress of the restoration project, visit Brill Windmill Restoration.