The Trust’s first project was the painstaking restoration of this mid-19th century watermill near Guisborough. Although privately owned it is still operated by the Trust and the Friends of Tocketts Mill as working museum and is open to visitors on Sunday afternoons in the spring and summer months.
Restoration was started in the 1970s by Peter Morgan, Peter Oberon and John Harrison and students from South Park Sixth Form College, Normanby.
In 1982 Tees Heritage (then called Cleveland Buildings Preservation Trust) leased the building from the owners of the adjoining caravan park. John Harrison and Peter Morgan, as directors of the Trust then continued their work on the mill using labour recruited under the Manpower Services Commission’s job creation schemes and opened the mill to visitors.
In 1982 a group of volunteers, The Friends of Tocketts Mill was set up. Since that time the Friends, co-ordinated by Alan Burgess, have operated the mill for the benefit of the public. In 1991 there were 642 visitors to the mill.
In 2008-2009 the building was re-roofed and inappropriate ribbon pointing removed from the walls by the new owners, The Hornsea Caravan Parks Limited (Davis and Paul Allison).
This is another advisory role for the Trust. The project occupies the grade II listed former Saltburn Girls’ High School, lately used as a primary school and recently replaced by a new school nearby. The old school has been converted to a multi-purpose community facility to accommodate drama and theatrical productions performed by people with learning difficulties.
The Trust provides specialist conservation advice to the Saltburn Valley Gardens Steering Group, working to maintain and improve this important Grade II Listed Historic Park. Work includes repairs to the grade II listed Prince Albert Consort Memorial – an early example of architectural recycling, having first served as the portico of Barnard Castle railway station until the 1860s when it was relocated to Saltburn to serve as an eye catcher.
Working in partnership with the Friends of Saltburn and owners Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council, the Trust aim to undertake essential conservation work to this grade II* listed war memorial and improvements to its setting. In 2014 Carillion Plc – the Council’s highways contractor – came forward to undertake gratis the re-paving works around the memorial. The council intends undertaking other improvements while grants are being sought and match funding raised by the community to meet the cost of the specialised conservation work to the memorial itself.