Brixton Windmill’s sails keep turning

Millers at Brixton Windmill social distancingBrixton Windmill and Friends of Windmill Gardens are working hard to continue to deliver a service to the local community and retailers despite the coronavirus pandemic.

Although it has had to postpone events in the gardens, it has increased its milling capacity and is supporting two local foodbanks with flour donations. You can donate financially here.  And there are still plenty of ways to get involved in online activities at home.

The Covid-19 outbreak and lockdown has limited the Windmill’s activities, but by adapting to the new working environment it has been able to continue milling flour.

The Windmill Board checked with the Food Standards Agency and Lambeth council to establish it could continue safely to mill flour during the lockdown by following strict social distancing and safety guidelines.

Events hosted by Friends of Windmill Gardens have been postponed until Autumn. These include food and drink festivals, arts and crafts and school visits. Open days, community events and tours that happen from April to October each year are also on hold.  However the gardens remain open for exercise in accordance with government guidelines.

volunteer Abs HolworthThe Windmill is run by millers, who are all volunteers. Abi Holsborough (above), a lead miller at the Windmill says: “Even now in this time of pandemic, when we’re keeping the milling operation going to serve the local community, it’s great to be a part of that.’’

The Windmill has made flour for the past two centuries. But it was only recently in 2014 that milling flour started again, after an eighty-year hiatus. Flour that is milled here is distributed to local retailers and food banks in Brixton.

Lucy Bridal, Brixton Windmill’s development manager says ‘’We are currently looking for more volunteers to join our milling team during this time of increased demand and can provide safe training and guidance throughout the process’’.

The Brixton Windmill is also donating Brixton Flour to two local food banks and is asking for financial support: £20 will cover the cost of delivering 40 bags of flour to a food bank. To find out more and donate, click here.

Women wearing mask packing foodbank parcelsThe two local foodbanks that Brixton Windmill are supporting are The Floating Food Bank and Norwood and Brixton Food Bank.

The Floating Food Bank is located in the community hub on the Blenheim Gardens estate, next to Brixton Windmill. Brixton Windmill and Friends of Windmill Gardens collaborate closely with Blenheim Garden Resident Management Organisation.

The Norwood and Brixton Food Bank works with referral agencies to issue food vouchers to those who need food during times of crisis. Their volunteers are currently delivering food parcels to vulnerable people with three days’ worth of nutritionally balanced food.

Friends of Windmill Gardens’ key objective is to provide community events that bring people together to celebrate and enjoy this historic building and space. The venue still aims to serve and provide for its community.

Brixton Windmill’s website and social media channels have a host of activities that people of all ages can get involved with, including quizzes, recipes and educational resources that can be accessed from home.

Brixton Windmill is also interested in any creations the public have been making with their flour. Pictures, messages and recipes are welcomed, and can be shared at info@brixtonwindmill.org.

Brixton Windmill and Friends of Windmill Gardens have been preparing for when Covid-19 restrictions are lifted. They are looking forward to the opening of their education and visitor centre. It is newly built alongside the windmill to host an even broader range of workshops and events to meet the needs of the community and local vulnerable groups once ‘’normality’’ has resumed.

Visit www.brixtonwindmill.org for more information regarding volunteering, donating and activities you can get involved with.

Social Media: @brixtonwindmill

 

 

 

 

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