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Work to begin at Periwinkle Mill in Milton Regis

Published Wednesday 17 March, 2021
Last updated on Friday 19 March, 2021

The site of a watermill dating back to Roman times is being improved for the local community.

Swale Borough Council is working with the Sittingbourne Society and the East Kent Engineering Partnership to enhance the site of the ancient mill in Periwinkle Close, Milton Regis.

The project will help bring to life the long and rich industrial heritage of the site and create an oasis for flora and fauna to thrive in what is now a relatively quiet and primarily residential area in Milton Regis.

The mill house was razed to the ground by the then owners in the 1960’s as it was in such a dangerous condition, but pieces of mill machinery remained on the site. At the suggestion of the Sittingbourne Society, the council bought the site and the society raised funds to pay for the restoration of much of the machinery.

Archaeological investigations in the 1960’s found Roman Samian pottery shards on the site, suggesting it’s use as a mill spanned two millennia.

The Sittingbourne Society are once again supporting the site by providing funding for the improvement works. The council is supporting the scheme by paying for design works, interpretation signs and officer support with project management and procurement.

Cllr Mike Baldock, cabinet member for planning and heritage champion at Swale council, said:

“Our heritage strategy identified Periwinkle Mill as one of the sites we want to improve to help conserve the borough’s rich heritage.

“It’s been fantastic that we have been able to work with the Sittingbourne Society to come up with plans for the site in a way that helps engage local people with the area’s history.

Malcolm Moore, vice chairman of the Sittingbourne Society, said:

“The Sittingbourne Society is very pleased to be able to provide the bulk of the funding for this exciting enhancement project and very much looks forward to seeing it come to fruition in the near future.

“The Society’s members will continue to liaise with the Council in drawing up the interpretation information for the site of this former water mill, to help local residents and visitors understand and appreciate the history of the area.”

The council, supported by the East Kent Engineering Partnership, is currently seeking contractors to carry out the works at the site, which are hoped will begin in June, and will be completed in July.