Save the Mill Update

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Celia Hunter

Last Wednesday morning marked the beginning of real evidence that the campaign to save Needler’s Mill is moving ahead as soil samples were taken so that the new foundation for the mill can be designed.

Celia Hunter and Alex Bushell don their Save the Mill t-shirts at last week's Farmers' Market.

Celia Hunter and Alex Bushell don their Save the Mill t-shirts at last week’s Farmers’ Market. Photo: Karen Graham. 

This is the first step in the process to move the mill over onto a new, stable foundation right next to where this heritage building sits now, to address the Unsafe Building Order placed on the mill by the municipality. Just two months ago the demolition of this historic mill built in 1830 was almost certain. There has been a mill on this site since the early 1820s when Millbrook was first settled. At one time there were 30 mills in what is now Cavan Monaghan Township.

The Board of the Otonabee Region Conservation Authority (ORCA) has accepted the offer to purchase Needler’s Mill received from the Millbrook and Cavan Historical Society provided the local non-profit organization fulfills the conditions of the agreement and meets the deadline for satisfying the Unsafe Building Order. For the Historical Society, the focus is now to raise the $90,000 to meet those conditions.

Joe Lunn shares memories of working at Needler's Mill at the Memories of the Mill event held at Centennial Place last week.

Joe Lunn shares memories of working at Needler’s Mill at the Memories of the Mill event held at Centennial Place last week. Photo: Supplied.

“As we see it, this is a community effort and it is going to be a community triumph,” says Celia Hunter, President of the Historical Society, “The will to preserve the mill, the core of our community’s history, is strong and it’s widespread.   With everyone pitching in, we will do this.”

The Historical Society has launched its fundraising campaign with phenomenal response, close to $20,000 raised in the first two weeks…

In the next few weeks, the new foundation for the mill will be designed and permits will be sought from the municipality and ORCA. Then construction of the new foundation will begin so that the mill can be moved by the end of the month. With the contractors lined up and the process in motion, fundraising will be focus for the Historical Society and the Save the Dam Mill Pond Group. For information on the project and on ways to donate, contact the Historical Society, millbrookcavanhs@gmail.com, call 705-932-3130, or go to the website, www.savethedammill.com

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