Sacrewell Mill nominated for two regional awards

Sacrewell Mill after the restoration

Sacrewell Mill reopened in July 2015 after a 12-month project supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and the William Scott Abbott Trust, which owns Sacrewell Farm.

The mill project has been nominated in the building conservation and leisure and tourism categories of the East of England Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Awards, which take place in Bury St Edmunds on 11 May.

If the mill is successful at regional level, it will be entered into the national awards later this year.

Cambridge architecture firm Purcell headed the project, which was managed by the Clarkson Alliance and work was carried out by Tinwell firm Messenger Construction.

Mill Project Officer Jane Harrison said the nominations are a credit to the team who worked on the restoration. She added: “It’s rare to be able to say that a project was finished on time and to budget which is testament to the hard work carried out by the team at Sacrewell Mill.

“Before funding was secured, Sacrewell Mill was on the ‘at risk’ register and the project could not have started at a better time.”Jane Harrison, Project Officer

“Before funding was secured, Sacrewell Mill was on the ‘at risk’ register and the project could not have started at a better time. The work carried out needed expert knowledge, from the initial planning stages to on the spot decisions.”

As part of the project, the back of the watermill was waterproofed, the waterwheel was repaired thanks to the expertise of Lincolnshire firm Traditional Wheelwrights, the walls were secured and the Collyweston slate roof was removed, cleaned and restored.

The mill and mill house have been interpreted throughout to reflect Victorian and Second World War working conditions, using the workers' testimonies discovered during extensive research by the team. A hydroelectric water turbine has been installed inside the stables to boost the educational value of the mill and to help cut the cost of powering it.

Purcell’s Project Lead Zoe Skelding commented: “I am delighted that Sacrewell Watermill is shortlisted for two RICS awards. Purcell has employed the latest building conservation techniques, sensitively incorporated new facilities and improved access to the mill.

“Installing the hydro-electric turbine extends the educational reach of the mill, enhancing the visitor experience and safeguarding Sacrewell’s future.”

Clarkson Alliance Managing Director Graham Clarkson added: “Sacrewell has been a delightful project to work on. It has been an amazing experience transforming the historically notable watermill and mill house.

“Clarkson Alliance is proud to provide project and cost management for this project. The team has worked incredibly hard to deliver on the authentic vision developed in the early stages in partnership with the William Scott Abbott Trust and HLF. Being shortlisted for the RICS Awards, East of England, is a fantastic testament to how working collaboratively can guarantee the best results for clients as well as motivating the team to deliver on time and budget.”

Notes to editors

  • The William Scott Abbott Trust was formed in 1964 with aims to advance all forms of agricultural practices on Sacrewell Farm and to provide educational facilities to the general public. To reinforce these aims Sacrewell visitor centre was opened. Sacrewell Farm is set on 550 acres of land. In guidance with the Trust, all profits made at Sacrewell are reinvested into the upkeep, the livestock and the heritage buildings. Find out more on the Sacrewell website.
  • Purcell includes architects, designers, heritage leaders, developers and specialist consultants. Purcell is placed in key regions covering the UK and Asia Pacific and undertakes projects involving historic sites, heritage buildings, admired places and their transformation, and building new structures and spaces. Find out more on the Purcell website or follow Purcell on Twitter.

Further information

Sacrewell Watermill: Megan Allen, Marketing Executive, on tel: 07951 422288 or via email:

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