A Future for Mills

Mills are iconic features of the Dutch landscape. The Netherlands Cultural Heritage Agency has commissioned this brochure to provide advice on how to preserve them.

The Dutch government has developed a heritage policy to ensure that these landmarks are treated with the greatest possible care. Its purpose is to highlight the cultural and historical importance of mills as a special type of historic building that combines the fields of history, engineering, water management and food provision. This is based on their historical value, their place in the landscape and their function in society. But how can these values be safeguarded most effectively? What advice should the Dutch government give? What decisions should it take? And what role might other stakeholders play? This publication sets out to answer these and other questions.

Revised mill policy

Thanks to private initiatives, mill organizations, owners and the government, a great deal has been achieved in the field of mill conservation in recent decades: over a thousand mills have been saved and restored, the professions of miller and millwright have been kept alive, and funds have been earmarked for regular maintenance. Nevertheless, it was necessary to revise some aspects of policy, for example by viewing mills less as a piece of technology and more as monuments to the history of technology.

This publication is also available in Dutch.

Who is this publication for?

This brochure offers municipalities, provinces and their advisors the means to shape their own policy on historic buildings. Property owners, architects and developers will find inspiring examples and tips.

Publishing details

Editors and text consultants: Mark van Nieuwstadt, Minotaurus, Maarn
© The Netherlands Cultural Heritage Agency, 2012