Efforts began this weekend to find the exact spot where a windmill once stood on Southborough Common near Modest Corner.
An area with a raised area of earth has been identified as the likely location and a survey was undertaken of the ground there using professional equipment in an attempt to find evidence of the original four brick pillars that supported the windmill.
The illustration above by Hugo Webber is based on a windmill at Nutley in the Ashdown Forest that is still operational. It is one of the oldest designs of mill for grinding corn for flour – used in Britain since the 12th Century – and the Southborough Common windmill may have been similar.
Saturday’s survey was organised by the Southborough and High Brooms Amateur Archaeology Society (SHAAS) and the Kent High Weald Partnership in collaboration with Southborough Town Council, which owns the land, and the Southborough Society. Work on Saturday is shown below:
One archaeology expert travelled from the Cotswolds for the occasion and a dozen or so local people helped with the geophysical survey. The organisations will continue to explore the site in the coming months and hope to add to the history of this part of the Common.
Meanwhile SHAAS is also organising a dig at the Ridgewaye allotments on 19th March 2017. It is described as a family archaeology dig and you need to book in advance into two, 2 hour slots from 10am-12pm and 1pm-3pm.
The Society says: “This area has previously produced some interesting artefacts. So SHAAS is inviting you, your family and friends to help us discover more of Southborough’s interesting historical past”.
The dig is suitable for everyone aged 7 years plus. All children below 16 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. To book email:
The Archaeology Society is also holding its AGM on the 7th March at 7:30 upstairs in the Imperial pub in Southborough.