Baking looks set to return to village’s historic mill

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EXCITING new plans are progressing on a major Heritage Lottery bid for Heckington’s eight sail windmill.

The Friends of Heckington Mill have already been awarded just under £50,000 with which to fund the studies needed for the main bid.

Now they have revealed latest plans to enhance the visitor attraction, including restoring the old bakehouse this summer.

Mill manager Jim Bailey said their main £780,000 Heritage Lottery application will be submitted in August. They were also approaching local authorities at parish, district and county level for further funding to enable them to buy the entire mill yard, including buildings and Mill House, apart from the mill itself which is owned by Lincolnshire County Council.

Mr Bailey said: “Most of the money we raise will be going to restore the old granary and cart shed to become a new visitor centre, with interactive learning display area, shop and ticket office.”

The Friends have canvassed the community for what they would like to see on the site and have been working with Heckington and Helpringham schools. Mr Bailey said: “They would want to come and see milling in operation but also to see baking on site again.”

The former bakehouse has been used as an office but the Friends now want to convert it back, partly as a modern bakery for workshops and demonstrations. The rest would be kitted out as a Victorian style bakery with coal or wood-fired oven and wooden tables.

The group is also looking at buying land behind the mill to grow their own wheat to complete the process from field to fork.

The county council is paying for a full set of eight new sails to be built, hopefully ready for Easter since the old ones were found to be rotten.

The Friends also aim to reinstate millstones on the ground floor, enabling disabled access via a lift from the new visitor centre.