The Small Windmill, Skerries

Map Reference: O250599 (3250, 2599)

Location: To the east of the railway line. Signposted "Skerries Mills"

There are indications that a windmill stood on this site in 1525. Whether or not this is the original is open to speculation. It is a cylindrical building with a thatched conical roof and four canvas sails. It is about 12.5m high and the diameter of the sails is about 16.25m. It drives a single pair of millstones. The thatched cap rests on hardwood bearings and was lufted i.e. turned to the wind from inside the mill. This operation was originally carried out by hand using a series of removable levers.

When the windmill was restored in 1995 the bearings were modified and a windlass and chain was installed to make lufting easier and faster. Before using the mill the canvas sail cloths have to be interlaced and lashed to the sail framework. They can then be adjusted to be fully or partially opened to catch the best wind.

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