Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Mountnessing: Windmill

“From being a friendly focus of village life, the wind-mill has dwindled to an ‘ancient monument’”. These words were written by C. Henry Warren in 1940 in his book, ‘Corn Country’. The miller at Mountnessing in Essex – the last of four generations of the Agnis family – had ceased business only a few years earlier. It is a post mill, built in 1807, replacing an earlier one on the same site. Chapman and Andre’s map of 1777 has a mill mound but no windmill. Ownership was passed to Mountnessing Parish Council in 1937. Such was its importance that in 1947 the mill was given Grade II listed building status. However a lighting strike a few years later damaged one sail and the building sank towards dereliction. Its fortunes changed in 1975 with the formation of the ‘Friends of Mountnessing Windmill’ and an ambitious project of restoration began in 1979 which lasted four years. The windmill was officially opened to the public in April 1984 and it remains a fine example of village industrial past. This photograph was taken 25 years ago today. In 2008 the mill was open during the summer on the 3rd Sunday in the month. For more information visit: and

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