Union Mill Union Mill, Cranbrook
Registered charity no.1031879

Return of the Sweeps 2017

Painting the StocksBy early 2016, the Sweeps had seriously deteriorated since their construction in 2002 and needed urgent attention. They were removed by the millwrights Owlsworth IJP to their workshop near Reading where three were repaired but they found it necessary to build a fourth one from scratch. The set was delivered to Cranbrook and installed at the end of June 2017.

Tuesday 27th was spent preparing and painting the stocks; the four sweeps were raised and bolted to the stocks on Wednesday and one of the clamps, which reinforce the stocks and had split, was replaced. On Thursday, backstays between sweeps and stocks were fixed and the push-rods and steel linkages, which enable the shutters to be opened and closed remotely, were connected - well nearly! A return visit was needed to complete the job.

Click on an image to view a larger version.

The Cranes arrived about 8am on
Wednesday and set up.
Nick & Fred hooked on
Nick and Fred from IJP safely hooked into
the cradle and rising to the challenge.

Lorry in drive
The Sweeps arrived about 9am.
A tricky job reversing in!
No1 Going up
Sweep no.1 going aloft.

Sweep no1 in position
Sweep no.1 bolted on
Bolting up
Tightening up the locknuts.

No2 being lined up
Lining up Sweep no.2.
4th Sweep going up
Fourth Sweep going into place.
Four sweeps fixed
Friday: Sweeps fixed, cranes gone.

Wednesday, 5th July: Millwrights return to fit last parts and make final adjustments.

Final Adjustments
Final Adjustments.
Four sweeps fixed
Complete; crane ready to go.
Sweep Close-up
Finished and waiting for some wind.

Photos courtesy of Nick Vinall, David Hall, and Tony Singleton.

Watch a video of the event on YouTube by clicking on this image:

Up she goes - Link to Video

Unfortunately, further work was needed in 2020 - Photos, etc, HERE