March 22, 2018

22/03/2018: Save Sutton Mill - Preserving national heritage

by Jonathon Cook, Director, National Millwrighting Centre

Save Sutton Mill, Norfolk and enable the creation if the National Milling and Millwrighting Academy. 

Sutton Mill, one of the most important unrestored windmills in the UK is facing a perilous future after its current owners decided to auction the site splitting it into two lots.

Sutton Mill, Norfolk - credit to Mike Page
 The decision has also put in jeopardy the plans of the National Millwrighting Centre CIC to buy Sutton Mill and use it as the base for the National Milling & Millwrighting Academy, a scheme to train traditional millers and millwrights to help secure the future of Britain’s wind and watermills.

 We, the National Millwrighting Centre CIC, ask for your help in promoting our Pledge Campaign to raise the funds required to enable us to recommence negotiations to buy the site and thus resume the project to create the National Milling & Millwrighting Academy.

  Our Funding The project has been backed by the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) who have awarded a grant of £500,000, and North Norfolk District Council who have offered a loan of £350,000. Donations and pledges of support to-date are now in excess of £70,000, including significant support from the local community. 

To pledge money and to learn more about the project, click here We have until the March 31, 2018, to secure an additional £80,000 – can you help?

Our vision and plan
We plan to restore Sutton Mill, one of the most significant and largest corn mills in Norfolk, to be the base for the Academy, creating a living heritage centre – a commercial venture which will fund the training of millers and millwrights into the future.

Hopper and rust black and white - Newsight Photography
 The scheme will create a commercial flour mill (windmill) where we will train our millers, a bakery, shopping experience focusing on local foods, caf√©, training centre and luxury Glamping facility (the site is on the Weavers Way). This heritage centre will sit alongside a millwrighting workshop and space for allied trades (blacksmiths, foundry, wheelwright etc) where we can train apprentice millwrights and which visitors will be able to tour, learning about Norfolk’s milling heritage and how mills are constructed and maintained.

 The project has seven key benefits:

  • Training millwrights and millers to repair, maintain and run our traditional mills;
  • Creating a new heritage attraction in a comparatively disadvantaged area of Norfolk;
  • Creating a rich ‘local food’ offering for people from the surrounding area to eat, drink and shop;
  • Permanent employment for up to 15 people;
  • Helping to secure the future Norfolk’s wind and watermills including drainage mills;
  • Safeguarding the Nation’s milling heritage;
  • Providing facilities for the local community and community engagement.

 Current situation and how you can help
 The National Millwrighting Centre CIC had come to an agreement to purchase Sutton Mill from its current owners and were raising funds in order to complete the purchase.

Black landscape survivor - Newsight Photography
 With the decision of the current owners to withdraw from the initial agreement and initiate an auction and to sell the site in two lots, the CIC have launched a Pledge Campaign, asking people to pledge money which will only be called upon if a new agreement can be reached with the owners to purchase the whole site.

We therefore ask you to join our Pledge Campaign. To pledge money and to learn more about the project, go to We have until the March 31, 2018, to secure an additional £80,000 – can you help?

Additional Information

The project will ensure a secure long-term future for Sutton Mill, after many years of uncertainty. It is one of North Norfolk’s most important heritage buildings and is currently on Historic England’s Buildings at Risk Register.

 Sutton Mill has a huge following among people across the region and farther afield, something that has become evident from the significant interest in the project to date. When completed, the Heritage Centre will provide local employment as well as volunteering opportunities.

More information can be found here and on social media;

  • Twitter - @suttonmill
  • Facebook - Sutton Mill

Please call 07796 696091 for further information or email; 


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