A film made by Crewkerne film makers the Anoraks, has inspired members of Martock & District U3A to visit watermills in Somerset and in Dorset. Filmed at various locations in 2014 by the Anoraks group, which is part of Crewkerne & District U3A, the film features mills still producing flour and others that are now derelict. One of the mills captured on film is the watermill at Dunster. Owned by the National Trust, the Grade 11 listed building was built in the 18th century on a site where a mill was recorded in the Domesday Book. The Dunster watermill was restored 40 years ago and is still worked today to grind flour.
Four members of the Anoraks, Brian Lawrence, Tom Jones, Colin Mayes and Alan Keene presented the film to Martock U3A. Alan Keene said: “Most of the mills were of traditional type that used a water wheel. But what was really interesting, was that we found one that had an Archimedes screw that was eight feet in diameter. It transferred water from the river to a leat a few feet away and it passed through a turbine to generate electricity.”
Chairperson of Martock & District U3A, Sue Maclean said: “We saw the Anorak’s film on churches last time and because it was so good, we booked them again. The film was very well received and attracted one of the largest attendances to our monthly meetings. It was fascinating and people enjoyed it. They have already asked for trips to be organised to go and see the watermills mentioned in the film.” The Crewkerne film makers are currently working on their next film about the Somerset Levels and U3A members are looking forward to watching it when it is finished.