Meopham Windmill (formerly known as Killick Mill) was built in 1819 by the three Killick brothers reputedly from old ships timbers purchased from Chatham Dockyard. It is one of a handful of six-sided smock mills in the UK, eight being the usual number. The mill’s black smock tower stands on a brick base of two storeys. The mill stands preserved with all its milling machinery including three pairs of millstones. The Windmill is a grade 2* listed building. It is now owned by Kent County Council and leased to the Meopham Windmill Trust, which also owns the land around the mill (the 'Windmill Garden'). The former engine shed is currently used by Meopham Parish Council as its Parish Office. The hexagonal base of the windmill is often used for Parish Council meetings and forms a very unusual council chamber, possibly the only one of its kind in the country.
Kent has many other interesting windmills. The website for the Union Mill in Cranbrook has an excellent page of links to other windmills in Kent that are open to the public.
The Windmill is currently under restoration to working order. It will be closed to the public except on a limited basis for most of 2023 and will reopen fully in 2024. For more information, please contact the Meopham Windmill Trust: email@example.com
Home History Restoration Fund Raising Mechanical Details News Update
RESTORATION OF THE WINDMILL
The windmill as it will look when restored.
Meopham Mill has the potential to become a working windmill again. Restoration of the cap, sweeps and machinery will allow it to mill corn into flour, using only the power of the wind.
In 2021, Kent County Council and the Meopham Windmill Trust started the process of restoring the windmill to working order. Phases 1 and 2 involved repairing the wooden tower of the mill and renewing the external reefing stage at second floor level.
Phase 3 of the restoration will commence in Autumn 2022, and will involve repairs to the cap roof of the mill. The cap is designed to rotate as the wind changes, but it is currently seized in one position. The fantail at the back of the cap has been removed for safety.
The four sweeps will be renewed during phase 4 of the restoration. Once they are back in position, the windmill's sweeps will be able to turn regularly. Inside the mill, the drive gearing and millstones will be overhauled and set up for operation.
Specialist millwright contractors will carry out the repairs to the cap roof and sweeps of the windmill. At the start of this process, a mobile crane will lower the existing sweeps and the cap to ground level.
Most of the work involved in phases 3 and 4 will take place off site. The cap roof will be restored, and new sweeps built, at the millwright's 'Repair Shop' in East Anglia.
While the repairs are in progress, a temporary flat roof will be fitted to the top of the mill for weather protection. The new sweeps are expected to be back in position and turning by the end of 2023.
What will happen on site this year?
To dismantle and lower the sweeps and cap, a large mobile crane will be needed. This must be placed as close to the base of the windmill as possible.
A mobile elevated work platform or 'cherry picker' will also be needed to enable the fixings of the sweeps to be dismantled safely.
Temporary alterations to the site will be needed in order to allow the crane and cherry picker to get close to the base of the windmill. The existing access track will be widened and the parish council notice board will be relocated.
Once restoration of the mill is complete, the site will be returned to its present grassed appearance.
November 13th 2022
November 13th 2022
This site is maintained by the Meopham Windmill Trust