No sails but it’s for sale...

FOR anyone who has ever dreamed of living like Windy Miller from the classic children’s TV series Camberwick Green, the perfect chance may just have blown in.

A former windmill is up for sale in Essex complete with many of the original workings of yesteryear.

Anyone hoping to mill their own flour may be disappointed as the sails and fantail have been removed from the five-storey building.

However, there are still plenty of the original features remaining inside the mill including the machinery room on the top floor housing the original mill workings with a ladder up to the top level just below the cap and its amazing views across the Essex countryside.

The mill, in Tiptree, is recognised as being of architectural or historical interest and is Grade II listed and believed to date from the 18th Century.

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Jeremy Kemp, from Savills estate agents, said windmills only occasionally come up for sale.

He said: “We generally deal with old houses and we get old mills and the odd windmill once in a while or sometime an old schoolhouse.

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“There are no sails on it anymore - they have been taken off a long time ago but it still has the feel of a windmill inside.

“Anyone who buys it will certainly have to be okay about walking upstairs as there are five flights and then right at the top is all the old machinery which is all still there.”

The windmill has been converted into “functional and liveable” accommodation but has retained much of the original workings and features including a considerable amount of the original machinery.

Dinner parties will never be short of conversation as guests come through the front door into the living room which is also home to the wheel and millstones with exposed timbers.

There are four bedrooms, including an en-suite shower room, and two reception rooms as well as a garden of about 0.3acres.

According to history experts at Essex County Council, windmilling in Britain is thought to have begun in the late twelfth century, by which time water mills were already well established.

By 1825 to 1835, when windmilling in Essex was at its peak, there were about 285 mills in the county.

But just 100 years later, only a handful were still at work and by 1950 the last working mill had stopped.

The decline of both wind and water mills from about 1850 followed the arrival of the steam-driven roller mill and improvements in sea, rail and road transport.

Grain could be brought from abroad to the huge dockside mills and the new roller-milled white flour could be distributed easily, even to remote country areas.

The mill at Tiptree is on the market with Savills and any would-be Windy Millers are being asked to stump up in the region of �350,000 to buy the freehold.

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