Do a good turn and help out at popular windmill
Are you outgoing, interested in heritage and can spare a few hours a month?
Willesborough Windmill is looking for more volunteers to help with a variety of roles this year.
The visitor attraction is becoming more popular and so more help is needed around the historic site, a popular visitor attraction, when it reopens after its winter closure on Saturday, March 12, the start of Kent’s Big Weekend.
The mill is then open on Saturdays and Sundays from 2pm until 5pm every weekend until October and volunteers would be asked to give a few hours once or twice a month.
Pat White, one of the current volunteers, said: “We are getting busier and busier and we need some more volunteers.
“People must be mobile, due to all the stairs in the mill, and interested in heritage.
“They also need to be able to talk to people, because we get visitors from all over the world but there’s no particular experience required and full training will be given.
“Help would be welcome for events, school trips, tours ,weddings, the kitchen and much more. It really is a lovely place.”
The windmill was built in 1869 on a two-storey red brick base with attached miller’s cottage.
It is now a Grade II listed building and incorporates shutters in the sweeps instead of canvas and sails. It once produced enough power to turn four sets of mill stones as well as the maize and oats crushing/cutting machines.
This mill replaced a smaller smock mill on the same site.
In 1872 a steam engine was added to allow the mill to keep working when the wind had dropped.
The mill operated until the 1950s when further industrial mechanisation in commercial milling caused its closure.
It was bought, in a very dilapidated state, and fully restored in 1991 to its former glory by Ashford Borough Council.
There will be a volunteers’ afternoon on Sunday, March 20 from 2pm-4.30pm for anyone interested in helping out.
Go to www.willesboroughwind mill.co.uk for more information
Willesborough Windmill volunteer Pat White, inset, is appealing for more people to help out when the attraction reopens next month