MP learns about Mayfield post mill project

Charles Hendry visits Argos Hill windmill
Charles Hendry visits Argos Hill windmill

MP Charles Hendry visited the historic post mill in Mayfield during April to find out more about the project to restore it.

The post mill is one of only 50 left in the country and will be restored thanks to a £100,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The Argos Hill Windmill Trust said it would take two years to revive the mill, which would then be opened as a visitor attraction regularly.

Trust chairman Jane Driscoll said: “The visit went very well. Charles Hendry was very interested.

“We have been given a £100,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery fund so we thought it was an opportunity to show Charles Hendry what we are doing and get a bit of publicity for what we are doing. He was very supportive.”

Jane said the trust was currently choosing between two tenders for the restoration of the mill, which would dictate when the building could be reopened to the public.

The work will mean the Grade II listed building, which dates from 1835, will be removed from English Heritage’s at risk register.

The trust said it was thrilled to have received the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and looked forward to restoring the mill, which is was an outstanding example of our industrial heritage.

Volunteers from the local community will lead the project and enable the sweeps to turn for the first time in more than 80 years.

The restoration work will be split between professional millwrights and local volunteers, providing learning opportunities for anyone who wants to get involved.

School and community groups will benefit. A display of historical milling artefacts will be set up at the mill and an outreach programme of talks will be organised.

There are only 50 post mills remaining in the UK, and Argos Hill is regarded as one of the most complete and important of those remaining today.

The mill has many unique features and retains nearly all of its original machinery.

Sadly it has been without sweeps since 1999 and is currently in a very poor condition.

Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund South East, Stuart McLeod said: “Not only will today’s Heritage Lottery Fund grant restore and rejuvenate this historic listed mill in the heart of East Sussex but it will also enable full public access for the first time in over ten years.

“An exciting range of community activities means that more people than ever will have the chance to get involved with their local heritage – all helping to ensure a sustainable long-term future for the site.”