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Windmills and watermills to visit in Surrey

PUBLISHED: 22:20 05 March 2012 | UPDATED: 14:28 04 December 2014

Reigate Heath Windmill, Reigate

Reigate Heath Windmill, Reigate

Take a tour of some of Surrey’s most famous windmills and watermills

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine May 2011

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Buckland Windmill, Buckland  
This tiny wind-powered sawmill, built around 1870, is 12ft square and about 30ft high and set in the garden of a privately owned house. Appointments can be made on 07786 966841 for visits and Heritage Open Days in September offers a further chance to explore.

Cobham Mill, Cobham 
This small 19th century mill, which is situated on the banks of the River Mole, is Surrey’s only surviving working watermill. It was restored in 1989-91 by the Cobham Mill Preservation Trust. Opens April to October, on the second Sunday in each month, 2pm to 5pm. Parties at other times by appointment on 01932 867387. 

Lowfield Heath Windmill, Charlwood
A mid-18th century post mill with a brick roundhouse, which originally stood at Lowfield Heath, alongside Gatwick Airport. It was moved 2.5 miles to the present site in 1987-99. Last worked by wind in 1880, it is now once again complete after many years of restoration. Opens from May to August on the last Sunday in each month, 2pm to 5pm.

Outwood Post Mill, Outwood
England's oldest working windmill, and one of the few mills which is listed Grade 1. Built in 1665, it is still capable of occasionally producing flour - but only for visitors to the mill, as there is no auxiliary power source in the absence of the wind. Opens for pre-booked parties only at present, call 07760 194948 for further information.

Painshill Waterwheel, Cobham  
A 35ft diameter waterwheel built about 1835 by Bramah and Son. The waterwheel pumps water from the River Mole to the Painshill Park’s Serpentine lake. The park also contains a horse engine, which pumped water for Painshill House. Access is via the landscape garden with follies and lake, which is open all year round.

Reigate Heath Windmill, Reigate
The Grade-II listed windmill dates back to at least 1765, and is thought to be the only windmill in the country which is a consecrated church. While the former post mill last worked by wind in April 1862, the roundhouse was converted into a Chapel of Ease to St Mary's Parish Church in 1880 and services are still held during the summer.The key is available from the Reigate Heath Golf Club.

Shalford Mill, Shalford
Located on the Tillingbourne, Shalford Mill is a beautiful 18th century watermill. Interestingly, it was also one of the properties presented to the National Trust in 1932 by the Ferguson Gang – the mysterious masked band of philanthropists who supported the Trust. Opens April to October, Wednesdays and Sundays, 11am to 5pm. 

Tadworth Windmill, Tadworth 
A valued part of the area’s local heritage (it’s used as an emblem by several local organisations), Tadworth Windmill is situated on the Northern edge of Banstead and within the grounds of the listed house, Millfield. The mill is a grade II listed building, reputedly the tallest surviving Post Mill in England and may date back to the 17th century. Milling ceased in 1902 and it has since fallen into disrepair, featuring on the buildings at risk register. Not open to the public.

Wimbledon Windmill, Wimbledon
Built in 1817 as a hollow post mill, most machinery was removed in 1864 and it was converted to a smock mill, with the base as cottages. Now two floors of milling museum, with a large collection of models and other artefacts. Opens Easter to October, Saturdays, 2pm to 5pm, and Sundays, 11am to 5pm.


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