Lytham St Annes windmill damaged again

Visited this last week, just before the storm, a hot muggy evening, resulting in several Mosquito bites, followed by a visit to the Blackpool illuminations.

One of my favourite places in Lancashire.

High winds have destroyed a windmill’s sail less than three months after it was restored from earlier storm damage.

Fire crews were called to Lytham windmill in Lancashire at about 17:45 BST on Thursday to remove a “precariously hanging” sail.

The Grade II listed building on Lytham Green had two new sails in July after storm damage in November 2010.

Lytham St Annes windmill
Lytham St Annes windmill

The chairman of the group which runs the windmill said his “heart sank” at the latest news of damage.

Alan Ashton, from Lytham Heritage Group, said: “I thought ‘not again’ particularly so soon after it was restored. It looked so superb all lit up at Lytham Proms in August, too.

“It is such an important part of Lytham and a very much loved feature.”

The windmill was built by the Squire of Lytham in 1805.

In its heyday, until fire forced closure in 1919, its millstones ground wheat and oats into flour, meal and bran.

Fylde Borough Council carried out a major refurbishment of the windmill in 1987.

Lytham St Annes windmill
Lytham St Annes windmill

LHG recently proposed a £500,000 project to the council to turn it into a working museum and the adjacent former RNLI boathouse.

The proposal would see the windmill returned to working order and the boathouse converted into a museum dedicated to a disaster in 1886, which saw 27 RNLI crewmen lose their lives trying to rescue 12 men on board a stricken ship.

Freckleton Lancashire

We recently visited the small Lancashire village of Freckleton, Lancashire.
The sun was out, and brightened up an otherwise sombre visit, for the reasons outlined below.

From Wiki :

Freckleton is a village on the Fylde coast in Lancashire, England, to the south of Kirkham and east of the seaside resort of Lytham St Annes.

Freckleton is near to Warton, with its links to BAE Systems. Warton Aerodrome’s 2.4 km runway is partly within Freckleton’s boundary.

The name of the village appears in the Domesday Book as Frecheltun and is said to derive from “Farmstead of a man called Frecla”, with Old English tun and Nordic personal name. An alternative spelling of Frequleton has been referred to in local history publications.

The Post office in Freckleton :


In the 1800s, Freckleton, already a place used to supply water to the Roman fort at Kirkham, was used as a port assisting the ship building industry. The local community helped making rope and sail cloth, remnants of which exist in local street names.

A military heritage runs through the history of Freckleton. In World War II, American forces from the neighbouring Warton Aerodrome resided in the village. The most tragic event in the village’s history was the Freckleton Disaster of 1944-08-23, when an aircraft attempting to land at Warton during stormy weather crashed onto Freckleton’s Holy Trinity School. A total of sixty-one people lost their lives, including thirty-eight infants, their two teachers, and the three air crew. Other victims included several residents and US personnel in a snack bar across the road from the school. Annual commemorations still take place, attended by residents and US veterans.

Freckleton village center :


At 10.30 hours on the morning of Wednesday August 23rd, 1944 B-24 Liberator H-20 42-50291was cleared for take-off from Warton’s runway 08. 291′, an ex-490th Bomb Group machine, “CLASSY CHASSIS II” had been brought to the U.S.A.A.F.’s huge Base Air Depot 2 for refurbishment prior to being allocated to the 2nd Combat Division.

B-24h liberator


On this day, she was being test-flown before resuming service and this task fell to 1st Lieutenant John Bloemendal, one of BAD 2’s regular test pilots, with T/Sgt Jimmie Parr as co-pilot and Sgt Gordon Kinney as flight engineer.

Freckleton war memorial :


The take-off was uneventful and the B-24 headed out over the Lancashire countryside, accompanied by a second B-24, 42-1353 being test flown by 1st Lieutenant Pete Manassero . Over the radio, Bloemendal called Manassero’s attention to the cloud formation towards the South-South- East. It was a very impressive sight and looked like a “thunderhead” according to Manassero.

Mass grave and memorial to the children killed in the disaster :