PEI

Volunteers fundraise to save Leard's Grist Mill from collapse

A group of volunteers have begun work to save the Leard's Grist Mill, one of the oldest remaining flour mills on P.E.I.

Canadian Potato Museum turning mill over to new group

A group of volunteers is working to save the mill. (Steve Bruce/CBC)

A group of volunteers have begun work to save the Leard's Grist Mill, one of the oldest remaining flour mills on P.E.I.

Many thought the mill, located in Coleman, P.E.I., would have to be torn down because it was at risk of collapsing into the Trout River. The mill closed in 2002.

Canadian Potato Museum Chairman Bill MacKendrick says the museum is turning the almost 130-year-old mill over to the new group.

"It's really the last surviving grist mill of its type in PEI and there were well over 100. Like a 125 years ago a grist mill was a very important part of your community," said Bill MacKendrick.

"So there were in the neighbourhood of 118 and now it's the last one of its type left and there seems to be a movement to rightfully leave it where it is and restore it."

The museum had plans to take the contents of the building and build a replica on their site in O'Leary, P.E.I.

But the new group, including Carter Jeffery from Hunter River, who is known for helping to save heritage properties, want to turn the mill into a  historical attraction.

Carter has launched a $100,000 GoFundMe campaign and has received a $50,000 anonymous donation.

There are plans to try and stabilize the mill this year where some of the wall is separating from the pier.

With files from Island Morning

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