Broads Authority’s work to restore the drainage mill at Six Mile House on Halvergate Marshes has already won this year’s Norfolk Constructing Excellence Award for Preservation and Rejuvenation. Over the last year, they transformed a dilapidated historic drainage mill into a showcase project for the repair of such buildings, despite the many restrictions caused by the pandemic situation.
The project also exemplifies our mission to develop a new generation of local craftspeople with the necessary Heritage Skills to look after these unique monuments in the protected setting of the Broads National Park. The vast majority of the works were completed thanks to the enthusiasm, perseverance and professionalism of two Heritage Construction Skills Apprentices, Brandon and Tom, and their dedicated Heritage Skills Training Supervisor, Sean.
They developed their skills in heritage brickwork and carpentry to restore the mill to a state that will last for many more decades to come. The level of their craftsmanship far exceeds what we anticipated, and they have been developing new skills in responsible procurement to fit within local authority guidelines as well as within the constraints set by national bodies like the Heritage Fund.
Three winning facts about this submission:
- Grade II listed building in a very poor condition brought back into a good state of repair, almost wholly by two apprentices and their supervisor.
- The delivery of Heritage construction skills to a new generation of craftspeople, giving them experience of working on a particularly local building type (a drainage mill) but developing transferable skills that they can use to work on other historic buildings in their future careers.
- The success of the project despite the challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic, difficult access to the mill and the banning of the traditional coal tar coating during the project.