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Nutley Mill
Nutley, East Sussex, UK
Nutley Mill
associated engineer
Not known
date  circa 1670
era  Stuart  |  category  Windmill  |  reference  TQ449291
ICE reference number  HEW 1478
photo  Paul Dunkerley
The smallest open trestle post mill in East Sussex — the buck, or body, of the mill is only 3m by 4.5m. The mill is reputed to have been moved to this site from either Crowborough or Goudhurst, Kent, in around 1835, and has been extensively restored.
As an open trestle mill, Nutley's substructure is not enclosed. The buck is slender with a pointed petticoat at the front, a triangular gabled roof, and a tailpole and ladder. It is also a 'head and tail' mill, that is the two sets of overdrift stones are positioned in the head (driven by the brake-wheel) and in the tail (driven by the tail-wheel).
The machinery is intact, and includes an iron windshaft, a 7ft brake-wheel and a tail-wheel, the last two having been converted from compass arm to clasp arm construction. And there are the two pairs of stones, unusually arranged with the French burrs in the head and the Peaks in the tail.
Originally built around 1670, the move to Nutley was reputedly made by the grandfather of a man called Setford. Inside the mill are the initials 'WS' and the date 1817, though a mill was first shown here on a map of 1813. A Henry Setford owned the mill from 1840 to 1862, then various others until Mr Rook, who owned it when it ceased wind work in 1908. At that time it operated with spring ‘sweeps’ (the Sussex name for sails).
After that date, the mill developed bad structural defects. The buck front was propped up until 1929, when it was strengthened. New skeleton sails and weatherboarding were fitted. New sweeps were installed in the 1930s to preserve the mill's appearance. The entire mill had to be rebuilt in 1969-71 because the timbers had rotted and on 14th October 1971, the two spring and two common anticlockwise sweeps turned for the first time since 1908.
The buck is now supported by three telescopic Acrow props — two at the breast and one at the tail. The breast beam was repaired in 2001-2. It was reported in 2003 that a dendrochronology survey had revealed that the main post had been felled between 1533 and 1565. The mill is now owned and maintained by the Uckfield & District Preservation Society.
Research: PD
bibliography
"The Windmills of Sussex" by Martin Brunnarius
Phillimore, 1979, ISBN 0 85033 345 8
"Mills in Sussex" by R.C. Pinney
Sussex Industrial History, vol.29, 1999
"Windmills in Sussex" by A.C. Smith
Stevenage Museum Publications, 1980
reference sources   CEH SouthWofEWGE
Location

Nutley Mill