Windmill misses out on lottery bid

Improvements to Lytham Windmill are being planned but funds are needed to help. L-R John Hayfield and John Tavernor.
Improvements to Lytham Windmill are being planned but funds are needed to help. L-R John Hayfield and John Tavernor.
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THE Lytham Heritage Group has missed out on Heritage Lottery funding for its ambitious plans to upgrade the town’s iconic windmill.

The group was hoping the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) would foot the lion’s share of the bill for a £1.5 million scheme to convert the Windmill and adjacent boathouse into a prime 21st century attraction.

But, although an official reaction is still being considered, it looks as though the group is now set to go ahead with a smaller-scale improvement plan.

That would include getting the mill’s sails working again for the first time in almost a century.

That is likely to entail asking for the public’s help is raising £60,000 rather than the £426,000 which would have been the case if the bid to the HLF had been successful.

Sara Hilton, head of HLF North West, said: “After careful consideration, the Fund decided it was unable to support the application.

“This was a highly competitive round of decision-making and unfortunately we just didn’t have enough money to support all the projects we looked at on the day.

“We at HLF understand the heritage importance of both the boathouse and the windmill, and that the Lytham Heritage Group had worked hard to find a sustainable future for both buildings.

“There were concerns, however, regarding the timing of the project and how this would fit into a wider co-ordinated strategy for the town’s heritage and tourism offer.

“We have offered the Group an opportunity for a meeting to discuss how they might take elements of the project forward in the future.”