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There’s trouble at mill !

November 28, 2015
November 28, 2015 - There’s trouble at mill !
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The Derbyshire Peak District has many significant heritage sites and structures. One that stands out, literally on top of the skyline, is Heage Windmill, which was completed in 1797 and is the only remaining stone tower windmill with 6 sails in the world!

However sadly there is now extreme “trouble at mill” and we need your help!

Late this summer severe wet rot was discovered in the fan and the main supports for the cap and sails of the windmill - a real threat to the survival of this unique structure, which is going to cost £100 k to repair.

However this is not the first "trouble at mill" – in February 1894 the mill was tail winded (i.e. the wind blew from behind the sails) and the cap and four sails were blown off in a violent storm. The photograph below shows the miller, standing on the wreckage of the sails in front of the mill and the brake wheel protruding from the debris of the cap on top of the tower!

Heage windmill 1894

When the rebuilding commenced, it was decided to replace the four sails with six patent sails, presumably to give the mill more power. The mill continued to be in regular use until 1919, when yet again the fantail was severely damaged in a gale and, presumably due to the declining economic situation of mills at that time, the windmill closed down. The mill was abandoned and over the next 50 years became derelict, and was further damaged in 1961 when it was struck by lightning.

In 1966, a Building Preservation order (the first ever in the county) was placed on the mill – with a Grade 2* listing – with Derbyshire County Council purchasing the mill for £350 in 1968.
During the early 1970s, restoration work was carried out with the fitting of new floors, sails, cap covering and skeletal fantail, and new sails hoisted in 1972, though the mill remained a static feature on the landscape.

In 1997 the windmill was again struck by lightning, fortunately without serious damage (this should never happen again as lightning conductors are now in place!) and Derbyshire County Council was obliged to deny access to the mill on safety grounds.
Having recognised the deteriorating condition of the mill, Heage Windmill Society, a charitable trust, was formed in 1996, whose aim was to restore the mill back to working order.

No easy task! After securing many grants and Six sail windmillmuch hard work, including re-cogging the gears, rebuilding the cap and cap track, building a new fan tail and hand sewing 126 canvas shutters on the nine-metre long sails, the fully working mill finally opened to the public on 1st June 2002.

It's certainly an amazing sight and a great tourist attraction and has been successfully milling flour ever since until September this year when the severe rot was discovered. Find out how you can help keep the sails of Heage Windmill turning for many more years to come!

Felicity

Heage windmill sails removed

the sails removed for repair

windmill at Heage in Derbyshire


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Hoe Grange Holidays Tripadvisor Comments...

  •   Lovely place to holiday near to interesting locations and easy access to the High Peak trail and Carsington Water. Part of a working farm with fresh produce to enjoy during... read more

    Angie B
    8/03/2019

      It's been three years since we last visited but once we arrived it certainly didn't feel like it!
    We stayed in Hipley again which had had a refurbished wet... read more

    ElizabethA717
    9/21/2019

      We love this place. Very wheelchair friendly, really well equipped and comfortable, with easy access by car to lots of places of interest particularly Crich Tramway Village, Chatsworth, Bakewell and... read more

    David H
    10/25/2019
  •   Loved every minute of our stay, and so did the family and friends that came to stay. Excellent facilities in our cosy Hipley log cabin. By far the best... read more

    krimpenijssel
    10/25/2019

      Stayed last week, from 6th to 13th September in the log cabin called Hipley. This was amazing, it was our first visit but certainly not our last. Gold standard disability... read more

    548julie
    9/14/2019

      Arrived and was shown to our pod, fantastic location and the pod was very good indeed plus we had home made bread and milk and tea and coffee. A... read more

    mickvfr
    7/28/2019
  •   Another great holiday at Hoe Grange - such a great place for us all to holiday as a family - this time with a baby, a 3 yr old, a... read more

    Thesamps
    10/04/2019

      lovely surroundings real farm country with chickens paying you a visit nice decking area to chill at the end of the day accommodation very good plenty to do nearby... read more

    vincent s
    7/28/2019

      For the second year running, we have had a great family holiday at Hoe Grange. We had one cabin for the week, for two sisters and our elderly wheelchair-using... read more

    EJYork2013
    6/25/2019
  •   We stayed in Pinder cabin and had a lovely stay, the cabin was spacious and comfortable, nice and warm after cold days out. The children loved meeting the animals and... read more

    Tiggywinkle15
    11/05/2019

      Recently spent a week in "Pinder" and had a lovely time. The location is stunning - the site is nestled in a beautiful valley on the edge of the Peaks... read more

    Peachey167
    7/16/2019

      On arriving at Hoe Grange in a downpour, we doubted if we’d made the right decision to go glamping, but after the warm welcome from David and a quick tour,... read more

    karenmD4738KD
    6/25/2019
  •   We had a lovely time staying in one of the incredibly well equipped pods. I bought my pony along and we had some great rides on the high peak trail.... read more

    plopster1
    6/07/2019

      What a lovely weekend away! We stayed in the lovely gypsy caravan, which was a wonderful and really unique experience. We took along our two horses, who also had a... read more

    rachelthomas2015
    6/18/2019

      What can I say?
    Absolutely superb!
    We have just returned from a family weekend staying in Daisybank cabin and the Skylark pod.
    It was our first trip away with my... read more

    Wheelieuser
    6/13/2019
  •   Myself and my sister travelled to Costa Rica and Panama via Viva Holidays Ltd. The holiday was exceptional and one to be treasured forever. Andrew at Viva Holidays... read more

    Paula C
    7/04/2019

      We stayed in the Skylark pod last October (2018) and had a lovely time. There was homemade, rustic goods (bread, biscuits etc) when we arrived. Felicity and David who run... read more

    KBarry
    9/15/2019

      We spent four nights at Hoe Grange and had a lovely time. The location is fantastic and right next to the High Peak Trail. The cabin was very clean and... read more

    Big_Al_0000
    7/16/2019
  •   Second visit to the accessible holiday cabins at Hoe Grange. David and Felicity were as helpful and friendly as ever. We had a welcome pack of freshly baked bread, butter,... read more

    Charlotte M
    8/07/2019

      We wanted a complete break and some peace and quiet and this was perfect. The caravan was secluded with beautiful views over the countryside. Everything was spotlessly clean and well... read more

    joanne B
    6/04/2019

      We stayed in Rainster cabin for a long weekend 6 th to 9 th September. This was my 5 th visit to the amazing Hoe Grange. I had visited before... read more

    Jan Horsman J
    9/17/2019
  •   We have just returned from a short stay in one of the pods on site at Hoe Grange Holidays. We couldn’t recommend them enough. The pod has everything you could... read more

    Catboy86
    8/17/2019

      We've just returned from our second visit to Hoe Grange. The suggested riding routes with stunning scenery were enjoyed by my daughter and I while the menfolk were delighted with... read more

    Jdrichie12
    7/11/2019

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