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Quainton News Archive - Quainton News No. 30 - Winter 1976
Quainton Windmill - Part 3 - Max Davies - Quainton Windmill Society
(Continued from Quainton News, No. 28)
The great 'lift-off' took place on 10th May 1975 when the cap, windshaft, brakewheel and frame were lowered successfully in about six hours. The heaviest unit load was the windshaft and brakewheel which totalled 4½ tons. That the job went 'like clockwork' was due to many hours of preparation over several months of weekend working and to the skill of the crane crew from Messrs Elmer's. Since then the massive cast iron track on which the cap runs has also been removed from the tower top and thorough weatherproofing has been completed. We can claim that the destructive, demolition and clearance phase is now over and we are faced with the problems of the ensuing constructive and restoration phases, with all the many and various skills that these demand from mechanical engineering, carpentry, bricklaying and glazing to sweeping up and making the tea.
The ultimate problem, as always, is of resources, of cash in particular! A professional millwright in 1972 estimated £19,090 for restoration to workable condition. Since then, as we all know, prices have risen steeply. Our own estimate, using voluntary labour, was £6,785 at prices ruling at the end of 1974 - say £10,000 allowing for the work to take 5 years with inflation averaging 15 per cent a year. Generous grants totalling £400 have been received from the Friends of the Vale of Aylesbury and £100 from the Council for the Protection of Rural England (Vale of Aylesbury Branch); we have raised over £1000 by our own efforts by donations, £1000 is promised by the Bucks County Council and £250 (for educational projects) by the Ernest Cook Trust. These sums have got us this far and have enabled us to make some prudent purchases of materials, especially timber, against future needs. We have applied to the Department of the Environment for a Government grant and we shall, of course, continue our programme of vigorous self-help. We hope for the best and meanwhile carry on working as hard as we can.
Work goes forward every Sunday morning from 10.00 o'clock. There is plenty of room for volunteers both skilled and unskilled. Just turn up or give a preliminary ring to Patrick Tooms, (telephone Quainton xxx). We should also very much appreciate news from readers of Quainton News of any supplies of oak or other hardwoods that they know of, seasoned or unseasoned. One of our greatest difficulties is timber supplies and our materials officer, G G H Rodwell, North End Road, Quainton, (telephone Quainton xxx) will be delighted to hear from you.
Text © Quainton Railway Society / Photographs © Quainton Railway Society or referenced photographer
Page Updated: 11 November 2017