VIDEO: Road closed due to safety concerns for Heckington Mill sails during high winds

Police have closed the road running past Heckington Windmill due to safety concerns in the high winds.

According to Lincolnshire Police, officers closed Hale Road at Mill View Road junction and Station Road at the Miller’s Way junction as a precautionary measure this afternoon.
Charles Pinchbeck, chairman of the Heckington Windmill Trust, said: "During normal milling operations, the mill started turning in reverse. The design of the mill means we are waiting for the wind to drop before it can be stopped.

Daniellle Thorpe's photo of the road closure outside Heckington Windmill.

Daniellle Thorpe's photo of the road closure outside Heckington Windmill.

"No-one has been harmed, and there has been no damage to the mill."
Trains between Skegness and Heckington were delayed through Heckington due to the safety concerns.
Safety inspections were ongoing on the tracks. It was unclear when services would be back on time.

Mr Pinchbeck explained after a period of windless days, the milling teams were the only people on site, trying to catch up with flour production when the sails began to spin backwards, which they are not designed to do

He said: "It is unusual for this to happen and nobody wanted to put anyone at any risk while the wind dies down later today."

He added the rattling of the 192 shutters in the sails was a natural thing.

Heckington Windmill.

Heckington Windmill.

Mr Pinchbeck said: "The sails are designed to take the load of the wind on the front edge, not the back from behind, so we wanted to make sure everything is alright.

"The immediate thing is to stop the mill, then there will be a thorough inspection to make sure everything is safe before restarting."

He said a new set of sails were installed in 2014 made from engineered timber and so he was not expecting any problems.