There’s been a lot of interest in the York wheel, a new addition to the skyline, a big happy go-roundy thing. Over in Holgate there’s a more important structure, which is also large, also goes round, but as far as I know you can’t go for a ride on it. Still, it might soon make flour, which, as it then makes bread, is clearly actually useful.
It has been neglected on these pages, and as I’ve long felt bad about this, our now-traditional Christmas Day walk headed for Holgate windmill. In its sail-less state I passed it many times in the 1970s and 80s. Every time I went to school, every time I caught the bus to town. It was a big black thing I never had much interest in, back then.
We approached Holgate from ‘Dicky Bridge’ (as we used to call it) over the railway line south of Holgate Bridge. Over Holgate Bridge the York wheel was resplendent, but far more interesting was the glimpse of white sails over suburban rooftops to the west.
Close up, the new sails are very handsome, reflecting the last light of the day. Shutters are still to be added, in the new year.
The York wheel has been raised by a commercial company looking to make a nice profit. These sails have been raised by the hard work and commitment of many people looking to preserve Holgate’s heritage, and make some nice bread.