The Mill is appoximately 57 feet high and its diameter is 25 feet at the base. The iron bands around the tower provide additional support to the brickwork and were fitted during the 1930 restoration.

The overall span of the sails is 70 feet and they are mounted on pitch-pine stocks 40 feet in length. The shutters that are fitted to the sail frames are adjusted by means of a spider coupling and bell-crank levers to increase or decrease the area presented to the wind, rather in the manner of a venetian blind. This system, the cubitt patent sail, was invented in 1807 by William Cubitt and was first installed in Stansted Mill in 1848. Previously, the shutters, or ‘spring sails’ which had been fitted, required each sail to be labouriously wound down and adjusted individually from an outside gallery around the Mill. When the Mill was first built, however, common sails were used and consisted of a simple canvas rigging covering the frames.


A tower mill with roundhouse
One person’s idea of how the Mill might have looked when it was built. There doesn’t appear to be any evidence that it was one storey shorter at that time as indicated in the sketch. The arrangement of floors did changed though when the patent sails were installed.