Bunbury Watermill has been given the chance to improve its visitor experience with the announcement of a major refurbishment scheme.
A grant of £12,500 will be used to tidy up the ancient mill and improve the visitor centre.
The Mill stands beside the River Gowy on a site that has been in use for more than 10 centuries. The present building was constructed in early Victorian times and most of the plant and machinery dates from that period. This means that the Mill has been serving the needs of Bunbury for a very long time, including giving sterling service during two world wars.
The old Mill still works well to this day, producing flour using no more power than that offered by the massive waterwheel and the enthusiasm of local volunteers. Time has taken its toll however and there is now a need for some improvement work, the cost of which is beyond the means of a charitable organisation.
The Trustees have prepared a refurbishment scheme which includes re-pointing the brick-work to dry out and stabilise the old mill building, new lighting to ensure that the Mill can be used during those dark winter evenings, re-plumbing to ensure higher sanitary standards and paving outside the visitor centre.
Ernest Croley, chairman of the Bunbury Mill Trust, said: “The work will start in the next few weeks. Soon afterwards we will be able to offer enhanced facilities to the many visitors who come to enjoy a much loved part of our heritage. All age groups are catered for, from school parties to pensioner groups, and those who just want a quiet cup of tea, or simply to enjoy the site. We give in excess of one thousand guided tours every year. Not bad for a bunch of volunteers!”
The funding is to be provided by WREN, a not for profit business which awards grants to community, heritage and environmental projects across the UK from resources donated by FCC Environment to the Landfill Communities Fund.
Peter Cox, managing director of WREN, said: “We’re delighted to support the work of the Bunbury Watermill Trust and the local community in restoring the Mill and preserving a valuable heritage site for future generations”.
If you would like to learn more, or even consider joining the volunteer workforce, why don’t you visit our web site www.bunburymill.com