History

The Windmill House

It is understood that the current building was completed in 1824 by the Town Clerk of Arbroath as his home. Although there is a small part of the building dating back to the 17th century, the main building to the front was probably completed in early to mid 1800s. The National Library of Scotland holds plans showing Arbroath when surveyed in 1858 and the house is shown complete with large landscaped gardens and a well located at the back of the house. The Berea Trust hold a document which states that the house was built in 1824.

Other historical information came from a local man who had a great, great, great granny who worked as a cook in Windmill House. He said that an extension was built by the then owner, the brother of Patrick Allen-Fraser. Patrick Allen-Fraser is a well known name in Arbroath who owned and developed Hospitalfield, an old hospital in Arbroath which he later bequeathed to the town.

Windmill House was a private house until the Second World War when it was then used as a base for Polish airmen. One of the ground floor rooms has drawings of aeroplanes on the wall - unfortunately not visible as they are currently under wallpaper! There is a large memorial stone on The Common (a public park adjacent to the Windmill Christian Centre) in honour of the Polish airmen. After the war the Windmill was opened as a hotel on 25 June 1947, being owned by various Arbroath families. The function suite was added around 1965.

From the early 1990's till the purchase by the Berea Trust, the building had a decline in fortunes. Under the ownership of a Londoner it is believed there was an attempt to burn the building and the scorched floorboards can be seen today!
The next owner was a publican from Dundee, who became bankrupt in 1996. Not before selling off the vegetable garden for housing.

The building then lay vacant for almost 2 years and unfortunately fell into a sad state of disrepair including roof damage causing severe water damage to the interior and resulting in structural damage.

Eventually the building was placed on the market and the trust were able to secure its future through the goodness of God and His provision of the property for a third of its market value!

A great deal of work and support of many have enabled the Windmill House to rise from a derilict condition to become the Windmill Christian Centre. As a result, for over 12 years now this centre has been used to provide low cost accommodation for many camps, youth groups, church groups and Christian organisations.

The future of Windmill is in God's hands, as The Berea Trust rely on the continued support of individuals, churches and organisations as well as the many visitors to keep the centre running. The vision for Windmill Christian Centre is to improve the building through a programme of refurbishment and upgrades to make the centre a pleasant, comfortable and welcoming retreat which will bring refreshment to body, mind but most importantly soul!

 
  The Windmill Christian Centre is owned and operated by The Berea Trust Ltd. Registered Charity SC022258.