Brixton Windmill is open to the public for guided tours from March to October and tickets are now available for the first open weekend of the year 25/26 March. Tickets for the open days can be booked on the website of the Friends of Windmill Gardens. Tickets will be released one month prior to each Open Day weekend.
Because of the limited space inside the windmill, the number of people that can go on a full tour is limited to three adults or two adults and two children. This means that tours can be booked up very quickly. If there are cancellations, the Friends advertise these on Twitter at @brixtonwindmill. Short tours to the first floor are also available on the open days.
Architect’s sketch of new education centre in Windmill Gardens
Lambeth’s Planning Department has approved plans for a new education centre at Windmill Gardens. The building will be used to run workshops for schools and other groups as well as supporting the regular programme of Windmill open days and other events.
Having a dedicated building will also allow the Friends of Windmill Gardens to expand their milling activities and develop a social enterprise selling flour to local bakeries, restaurants and retailers, as well as running baking workshops, to fund the education programme. The Friends will also be able to sell and store merchandise, which helps to raise much needed funds for the windmill. When it is not being used for Friends’ activities, the building will be available to hire, at affordable rates, by community groups and others.
Lambeth Council has provided £360,000 to fund the construction of the building and further fundraising is planned by the Friends to fund activities.
Lambeth Council staff will be fundraising for Brixton Windmill next week with a Halloween-village fete-Diwali-Bonfire Night mash-up at Olive Morris House. Staff will be making and selling food, with an emphasis on cake, to raise funds as well as organising village fete type games and collecting donations. The lunchtime event will be on Thursday 5 November.
The following week, the Friends of Windmill Gardens are holding their autumn General Meeting on 11 November 2015 at Market House, 443 Coldharbour Lane. They will be reviewing all that has been achieved over the past five years and outlining plans to celebrate Brixton Windmill’s 200th anniversary in 2016 and go forward to the next five years.
The meeting will be followed by a thank-you party for everyone who has helped with this fantastic project, including all the guides, stewards, tour organisers, bakers, millers, gardeners, events organisers, communications team and fundraisers and everyone who has worked so hard to make the windmill and the education project such a great success. The party is invite-only – please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Donations to the Friends can also be made via PayPal at www.brixtonwindmill.org/friends-support-us
Community campaigners who have years of experience growing food and raising animals in their gardens are now exploring the possibility of setting up a City Farm in Windmill Gardens by Brixton Windmill.
The residents suggest that Windmill Gardens could become a space to farm livestock for eggs, milk, meat, honey and wool; grow all kinds of vegetables, fruit, herbs and salads; come together to learn about local history; spend time outside leaning skills to lead healthier happier lives; and improve Brixton’s environment and explore sustainability.
The campaigners have set up a survey and are asking for comments by 22 March. Fill in your comments here.
The Friends of Windmill Gardens write as follows:
In 2016 Brixton Windmill celebrates its bicentenary. This is just one year after the current Heritage Lottery funding for the windmill and the highly successful schools programme comes to an end. Before that, the Friends of Windmill Gardens need to develop a robust sustainability plan to ensure the future of Brixton Windmill.
We are looking for Friends, volunteers and new supporters of Brixton Windmill to join a group to develop a clear plan for the future. The Friends have some ideas already, but we welcome more. We particularly need help from anyone with creative ideas and with expertise in the area of fundraising and budget planning.
The first meeting of the Windmill Sustainability Group will be held on Thursday 11 September at 6.30pm, before the bat walk (see above). If you would like to help, please email email@example.com and put “Sustainability” in the subject line.
Brixton Windmill will be launching their Mill Memories book and exhibition on Bank Holiday Monday 5 May.
Mill Memories is an oral history project, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund as part of its All Our Stories scheme. Volunteers interviewed 26 local residents about their recollections of Brixton Windmill and the surrounding area, and have used the material they gathered to produce a book and exhibition. Continue reading
An application for planning permission for two linked 5-storey buildings has been submitted for the derelict former Elf petrol station on Brixton Hill.
Having been refused planning permission on a previous occasion, developers have returned with a scheme that they say better reflects the surrounding street scene and adjacent Grade II listed buildings. According to the design statement:
“The southern block, a five-storey white rendered block, adopts the proportions, massing and materiality of 132 Brixton Hill Grade II listed building. The northern block, of a red/brown finish, is narrower than the southern part seeking to maintain the proportions of the row of brick terraced houses north along Brixton Hill. It also seeks to tie in with the language of the brick mills and industrial units to the rear of the site.”
The scheme is a mixed use scheme, with ten studio/office units and eight residential units on the upper floors, with no homes deemed ‘affordable’.
The developer is also offering a financial contribution to the upkeep of Windmill Gardens, as well as an agreement that residents would not be eligible for residents’ parking permits in order to reduce the burden on local parking.
Residents can make comments or object to the scheme online here.