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Last Updated: Sunday, 15 August, 2004, 09:11 GMT 10:11 UK
Farm's donkey wheel is restored
Picture of Saddlescombe donkey wheel supplied by the National Trust
The donkey wheel dates back to the 17th Century
A "donkey wheel" at Saddlescombe, West Sussex, which dates back to the 17th Century, has been restored.

Donkey wheels were turned by a donkey to supply water. There are only four in the South East.

The present wheelhouse, housing the restored wheel, was built in 1855 and the wheel was used to supply water to the hamlet and farm on the South Downs.

Funds for the work came from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the National Trust.

English Heritage says the wheelhouse, barn and parts of Saddlescombe farmhouse date from the early 17th Century.

The wheel, which is on land owned and managed by the National Trust, is accessible by a path from the South Downs put in by the trust six years ago.

Donkey wheels were common in the 15th Century and are known to have been used as early as the 13th Century.


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