Waltham Windmill is a large
six-sailed tower windmill
Construction of the windmill that stands today began in 1878 and was completed
by John Saunderson from Louth, Lincolnshire in 1880. The new windmill was constructed of local brick and coated with a layer of tar
as a seal against the elements.
This was not the first mill on this site. As
far as we know, the first mill on this site was built in 1666 (in the same year
as the Great Fire of London) and was a trestle post mill. This mill was blown down in 1744, but soon replaced with
another post-mill to continue the job of the old mill. Unfortunately for the
residents of the area, this mill too was blown down, in 1873. So this is the
third mill and lasted far better.
The six-storey mill had a greater capacity than
the previous post-mills and featured 6 double-sided sails, driving four pairs of
grinding stones for the production of flour (two so-called greystones (peak
stones, cut from rock of the Peak District) and two French quartzite stones).
In the 1920s, the sails were reconstructed to single-sided sails to increase its
efficiency in light winds.
It is said that during World War II whilst RAF
Grimsby was being constructed the Air Ministry saw the Windmill as a possible
waypoint for German Bombers. They went to see the Farmer who owned the mill and
told him they would destroy it along with the Grimsby Dock Tower and Binbrook
Windmill. The farmer then went to get his shotgun and chased them off his land
and they only returned to construct the W.A.A.F. canteen.
The mill was
however used During the Second World War as a Home Guard look-out post with a
view over the River Humber.
Grimsby Dock Tower
survived due to it holding a Royal Navy wireless transmitter, however Binbrook
Windmill was demolished.
By 1962, Waltham Windmill was one of the last windmills
in England to be fully operational by wind, but from this point until 1967, it
was powered by electricity.
Today within the grounds of the windmill, there
are:- a miniature railway, a museum dedicated to Rural Life and an old sweet shop
selling favourites from the 1920s to the 1970s, as well as other
businesses, a restaurant and more.
The mill has been restored and again has 6
For technical details of inside
When we visited
We arrived and the place was nearly deserted,
empty car park, miniature railway being put away and people going home, although
we were there well before the published closing time. We presumed that as
it was quiet, the habit is to pack up and close up early. However for us this
was no problem in that we could still walk around and photograph the windmill.
This is another large tower mill, complete in
this case with 6 sails. There are a number of possible views, two of which are
shown on this page. The top image has been adjusted slightly within Photoshop to
correct perspective (mill leaning back), while with the lower one I was able to
get back a little further so it was less of a problem. The site is constructed
with parking and facilities to handle a lot of people and if there was that many
people around, they would have got in the way, and perhaps therefore in tourist
seasons it may not be so ideal.
It is a windmill that is easier to photograph
than many of the larger mills, and you have the choice as to getting closer and
having perspective problems to overcome or getting back further and including
Further information Grid
Waltham Windmill, Waltham, Lincolnshire
Plentiful free parking
facilities, a restaurant, old railway-carriage café, a herb shop,
old-fashioned sweetshop, a local artist, woodturner, and other craft
outlets. There is also a popular miniature railway and a picnic area.
Museum of Rural Life,
more of the Museum) with a number of hands-on items, plus video shows
and RAF section.
Things To Do,
See and Photograph:
What to take:
Site open all year.
Open 10am to 4pm from Easter until the end of
September (Saturdays, Sundays & Bank Holiday Mondays).
BUT (from our experience)
MAY CLOSE EARLY IF NOT MANY PEOPLE ABOUT.
There are events on some dates
check their website
Entry fees not on their website, but some exist
as it says its society members get in free.
Special Needs Access:
Site is easy access throughout
Special Needs Facilities:
CIN Page Ref:
Date Updated: 05/2008
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