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Posted by Kim Winter, Friday 30th May, 2014

New bench donated by Ashby family

Ashby cousins: Betty Hughes from Colchester, Henry Ashby from Surrey and Audrey Webb from California sitting on the new bench donated by descendants of the Ashby family

At the end of May we had four very special visitors to Windmill Gardens. Three descendants of John Ashby - the first miller at Brixton Windmill after it was built in 1816 - and one of their friends came to see a lovely new park bench that the family have donated to the park. They were also able to visit Brixton Windmill, which has just been painted as part of essential maintenance work.

It was a lovely sunny day for our special visitors, two of whom had travelled all the way from Berkley, California. They told us that when they had last visited from the US more than 20 years ago they had found Brixton Windmill in a rather sorry state, damaged and covered in graffiti. They were very pleased to see the transformation and to be able to climb to the top of the historic building.

We are very grateful to the Ashby family for donating the new bench. It is a welcome addition to the park and will be enjoyed by regular park users and visitors to Brixton Windmill.

We would also like to thank Lambeth Parks and Open Spaces department for providing new granite setts to go under the bench and also the matching bench we already have in the park. They look great together, particularly as the older bench has now been varnished to match the new Ashby family bench.