14 December 2010

Cromer-wick Green

Over 38 feet tall to its rooftop, the windmill at Cromer is Hertfordshire's only surviving post mill. In a post mill the entire body (or buck), complete with all the grinding machinery inside, balances on a massive wooden post - in this case 18 feet tall and almost two feet square - which is itself supported by a timber trestle. Mounted above the access ladder is a fantail, which catches the wind. By means of iron wheels on a track that encircles the mill, the whole construction is thus automatically turned to enable the shuttered sails, 56 feet across, to face into the wind.

There has been a windmill here for over six centuries. The present one was built sometime between 1681 and 1720. In around 1860 it was blown over and rebuilt, but by the 1920s it had fallen into disrepair, wind-driven milling no longer being economic. By the end of that decade the mill had lost one sail and the other three had been removed. An appeal in 1967 enabled the mill to be saved, but it wasn't until 1998 that various grants enabled it to be restored to working order. The tax known as the National Lottery does have some benefits.


abijsmith said...

Just a thought, it's difficult leaving comments because each time you have to go through this bloomin verification process.... make it able to accept open comments to make it easier?

YMGW said...

Already set to allow all comments, but have turned off verification process too.