Building work is well underway at Upminster Windmill. The new Visitor Centre is progressing well and is due to be finished mid to late summer 2016, opening to the public in April next year. There will be a workshop to carry out maintenance on the Windmill as well as a new space to welcome visitors and groups.
One of the most exciting phases of the project began in late May – the restoration of the Mill itself. Willem Dijkstra is our appointed Millwright; his first job on site was to remove the cap and sails. The sails have been removed before, notably in 2007 when two were removed due to storm damage, however, it was still a great sight to see the sails lifted off. The following day was a truly historic occasion; the cap had not been removed since 1803 when the Windmill was built so the task at hand was a delicate one. The job was skilfully executed with the cap safely lowered to the ground. The curb, which sits between the top of the body of the mill and the cap, was also removed a few days later. The removal of the cap and curb can be viewed online through the following links:
The cap, sails, curb and several other components including some of the mill stones have now been taken to Willem’s workshop in Holland where they will be fully restored. The weatherboarding on the Mill will be repaired, and a scaffold will go up around the Mill next year to allow for this work. The restoration of the Mill will take two years, with completion in 2018. Volunteers will be working to repair the internal machinery of the Mill also.
If you would like any more information about the project please contact Gemma, the Community Engagement Officer on firstname.lastname@example.org