Blue Flower

The original gate frame as shown in the historic pictures was part of the guillotine staunch used to control the flow of water in conjunction with the upper staunch. Part of the HLF grant paid for replacement of the wooden gate frame to restore the original view of the water wheel scene.

On Saturday 14/11/15 the gate frame was taken to the mill to be fitted. The structure had been made by Fred at The Maltings and a trial assembly and fine adjustments were made before loading all 5 pieces onto the trailer with tools and equipment for fitting it. The only access would be from the opposite river bank as the water wheel would be in the way, so I drove the tractor & trailer past the mill, across Bordon bridge, back along the opposite bank to the mill, then turned around opposite the pier. I followed Fred in the digger who worked from the opposite bank as well.

The first job was putting scaffold boards across the river so we could access both sides and work next to the new uprights. The old rotten upright next to the wheel was pulled out with the digger, the bottom part below water level had to be chiselled away by hand. One of the original bolts was sticking up so the bottom of the new post was drilled to fit this.

The first post was slotted in place with the digger, then tapped down below water level with the digger boom. Debra brought a camping stove along and made bacon rolls for everyone which went down well as we had worked up an appetite.

A metal channel had to be removed from the far side post position before the new upright could be put in place, and there was wood below water level this side too which had to be chiselled away. Scaffold boards and sandbags were put at water level so we could work in this area and the digger bucket was placed where we could stand in it. When the second upright was trimmed to size and fitted, a screw jack was put between them to keep them in position until they could be drilled and bolted to the walls.

The top piece was put in place and fitted perfectly, then the angled struts were tapped in after lifting each side enough to slot in the joints. When the first one was fitted someone said the frame looked like a hangman's gallows, and Fred demonstrated this. The new frame really sets off the water wheel and looks very similar to the original one in the old picture of the mill.

After a few years the wood has aged and mellowed, it now blends in very well. In September 2018 a notice board frame was made in the style of the gate frame to house our information board, this is just downstream from the gate frame.

Graham Bartlett      Interactive Plan     Blog 12/11/15     Blog 19/11/15   Gate Frame BBQ

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