Halnaker Windmill has the wind in its sails once more after a five-year wait for its restoration came to fruition this week.
The Grade II listed iconic landmark had its tiles replaced in October last year but the sails – or sweeps – had to wait to be fitted in fine weather.
As the Observer went to press, work was still ongoing at the site, which will remain fenced off until it it is free of machinery and has had some ‘finishing touches’.
Clerk to Boxgrove Parish Council Imogen Whitaker said the council was ‘delighted’ that the windmill had been restored and wished to thank the county council but also residents who had pushed for the work to be completed.
The 18th century windmill was fenced off in 2013 when an internal beam fell during an act of vandalism and in the subsequent investigation, various other repair issues were discovered.
The first part of the restoration involved completely re-tiling the windmill and repairing its white cap and balconies, the result of which has seen the landmark put forward for the Sussex Heritage Trust Awards.
If given planning permission, the next stage will be to install a door and metal fencing around the building.
Jeremy Hunt, West Sussex County Council’s cabinet member for finance and resources, said: “I am delighted that we have finally been able to re-fit the sails to the recently restored Halnaker Windmill.
“This iconic Sussex landmark can once again be seen for miles around in its full glory.
“This is a project I have championed for a number of years and I would like to thank our team at West Sussex County Council, as well as all the contractors involved in the restoration, who have worked so hard to bring this project to fruition.
“There are still some finishing touches but the windmill can once again take pride of place, situated high on the South Downs.”