Thaxted in Essex is a town full of historical buildings and structures, covering 1000 years of the town’s history. One of the most famous local landmarks is the John Webb windmill, situated in the south of the town.
Built in 1804 from local materials, the fortunes of this photogenic windmill have been varied in recent years. In 1907, the sails were chained, and the mill fell derelict twice, either side of being used as a scout hut. Since 1970, however, the mill has been under the care of a local Trust, who have worked hard to restore the mill and open it as a rural museum and reattaching the sails in 1991. The latest chapter in the fortunes of the mill began in April 2010 when one of the sails broke off into the side of the mill, damaging stonework and the gallery that runs around the base of the structure. Once again, the sails were off and repairs for this freak event topped £50,000. The Trust set about raising these funds from various sources and a successful application to Viridor Credits also saw the Trust receive funding from other organisations. The new sails wereinstalled in the spring of 2012.