The Wind Pump, which is a Grade 2 Scheduled Ancient Monument, was erected in 1832 by Richard Lombe Taylor’s great-grandfather to pump water from Starston Beck to Starston Place and the Home Farm. It was an innovation at the time and saved many hours of back breaking work driving a water cart into the Beck and filling it by hand. It is now thought to be the only one of the type left.
It has had to be renovated three times since the Second World War, once by Jimmy Newby, who worked on the Home Farm for many years, and twice by Millwright Richard Seago from North Walsham. The sails no longer have canvas in them for safety reasons and cannot turn, therefore it is no longer able to pump water, and the round house containing the pump is locked for safety. Richard remembers the Wind Pump in use in the 1930s and seeing the large valves being turned to divert the water to different outlets. However the Wind Pump can easily be viewed from the public footpath which runs from The Street down to the Beck beside Denbridge.
The Wind Pump has been adopted as a symbol for Starston – it is an integral part of the village sign – and it is marvellous to see it restored with help from English Heritage and Norfolk County Council.
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