Floods January & February 2014
The flooding this year has been the highest since 2003 and reached a depth of 16 inches inside the mill itself. There has been very little damage because we prepared in advance. We stripped the mill shop and raised all the counters off the floor, removed all our stock of grain and secured the waterwheel. The stable door at the end of the mill is then taken off its hinges and a steel grid is placed over the open doorway to allow the flood water to flow out of the building. Once the level drops its a case of shovelling out all the silt and scrubbing all the floors clean. Now we have to keep the mill ventilated to allow the floors and walls to dry out. This can take 2-3 months.
We are delighted to announce that our new waterwheel is currently under construction and hopefully will be in place by the summer if the river levels will allow. As the photos show the current wheel is starting to show its age. Some of the floats (paddles) are not at their best.We have been replacing the worst ones to keep us going and will keep the replacements as spares. The main reason for replacing the wheel is the appearance of a number of splits in the wheels framework and also many of the joints are showing signs of decay and movement.
The wheel will be as exact structural copy of the existing one and will be made out of oak which has been sourced from the Mapledurham Estate. As work progresses we will update this space
Construction So Far
The recent flooding is causing a few problems with checking measurements etc of the existing wheel as much of it is under water. However construction is well under way as you can see from the photos below which were taken 17.02.2014. All of the new paddles have been cut as have the curved sections of the main frame.