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Cruickshank makes waves to save historic tidal mill

PUBLISHED: 19:39 24 June 2009 | UPDATED: 14:29 05 October 2010

Cruikshank... bid to restore Three Mills

Cruikshank... bid to restore Three Mills

TV HISTORIAN Dan Cruickshank returned to East London this week making waves to restore the world's largest remaining tidal mill. The architectural historian who fronts the BBC's What the Industrial Revolution Did for Us was at Three Mills Island in Bromley-by-Bow yesterday (Tuesday) to start the drive to restore the historic House Mill

By Victoria Huntley

TV HISTORIAN Dan Cruickshank returned to East London this week making waves to restore the world’s largest remaining tidal mill.

The architectural historian who fronts the BBC’s What the Industrial Revolution Did for Us was at Three Mills Island in Bromley-by-Bow yesterday (Tuesday) to start the drive to restore the historic House Mill.

The Three Mills Partnership hopes to restore the waterwheels and generate hydroelectricity in the run-up to the 2012 Olympic Games being held on the next-door site.

HIDDEN GEM

“This is the largest remaining tidal mill in the world, a hidden gem in a deprived area of East London,” said Cruickshank.

“The building is hugely important for its heritage value and its future potential to generate hydroelectricity.”

The site was crucial to London in Medieval times when the three mills were used to grind the wheat to supply the city with its flour.

Later in the 1500s, they were grinding gunpowder, then from 1728 until the early 20th century grinding corn for distilleries.

BLITZ

But the House Mill fell into disrepair during the Blitz in the Second World War, before being rescued’ by the River Lea Tidal Mill Trust in 1985.

Trust chairman John Haggerty said: “The House Mill represents the remains of East London’s own industrial revolution. The technology was powerful for its time and we now want to harness that power to generate our own electricity.”

Cruikshank was at Bromley-by-Bow only last month rescuing the long-forgotten stones of the once-famous Euston stationGrecian arch entrance demolished in 1961 that were rediscovered dumped in the River Lea near Three Mills.

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