Wicken Windmill, Wicken

A wind-powered corn mill in the historic county of Cambridgeshire, England.

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Grade II* Listed Wicken Mill stands in the centre of the village of Wicken on the south side of the A1123, nine miles south east of Ely and is the only complete twelve sided smock mill in the country.

Wicken Mill is a large Cambridgeshire smock mill built in 1813 to grind flour for the village and to supply the local farmers with animal feed. The mill ceased work in the 1930’s. Following this the mill fell derelict and the sails were taken down and dismantled; shortly after the cap failed and by 1971 the mill was in a really bad way.

In 1971 Chris Wilson, from Over Mill in Cambridgeshire with the permission of the owner, put a temporary cap on the mill to keep the rain out. This helped save the mill until the Wicken Windmill Partnership bought the mill in 1987.

A new cap and sails were then made and fitted, now complete with shutters, and inside gearing restored and one set of furniture made.

The restoration of the mill is due to the commitment of volunteers who travel to Wicken from all over the country. The volunteers are involved in every aspect of the repair from carpentry to metal casting.

The circular brick base topped with the 12 sided wooden smock tower is tarred. The traditional Cambridgeshire cap is painted white and is turned by an 8 bladed fan painted blue. The mill now drives two pairs of French burr stones powered by four patent sails. The windmill business closed in 1933, although the mill was still worked occasionally by engine until 1942. The windmill was restored from 1987 by the millwrights of the Wicken Windmill Partnership, and now mills to satisfy demand for flour.

Wicken Mill is looked after by The Wicken Windmill Partnership.

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Full details

Power source Wind
Mill type Smock mill
Mill function Corn mill
Archive ID 2383
Location Wicken
Historic county Cambridgeshire
Country England, United Kingdom
NGR TL 57053 70578
Latitude/longitude 52.31084730, 0.30235653

Location

Gallery

  • The mill in March 1934. Photo by H E S Simmons
  • Another Simmons photo, after the sweeps and fantail had been removed, June 1939
  • The derelict mill, 1948. Photo by Hallam Ashley
  • Vertical section showing the inner workings of the restored mill. Image copyright The Wicken Windmill Partnership
  • Photo: Jacqui Ward
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Daniel Carrick
  • Photo: Jacqui Ward
  • Photo: Jacqui Ward

References

Contributors

Jacqui Ward, August 2016, October 2016; Photo: Daniel Carrick, December 2016

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