On Sunday we drove with our friend Adrian to the small, historic town of Oatlands, 87 km north of Hobart, to see the celebration of the opening of a recent (over the past 6 years) restoration of a windmill that was originally built in 1836. It stopped producing flour when its sails were blown into the nearby lake by a storm, and since 1891 the Callington Mill was foreclosed and abandoned.
The tour of the mill was very educational, as we climbed four flights of stairs to the top level where the main shaft exits the cupola to the enormous blades and sails and then we followed the path of the grain down to the flour sacks on the ground floor. Metal gears bearing on wooden cogs transfer the wind power to rotate the two large grinding stones. A small circular set of sails forms the fantail, which keeps the large sails facing into the prevailing wind.
The original miller’s house, granary building, stables and other sandstone buildings, built by convicts, are still standing, and have all been restored.
The group of enthusiasts that organized and promoted the mill restoration has a blog that includes lots of photos of the restoration.