The craft of being a Dutch miller has been added to a Unesco cultural heritage list because of the skills involved and the key role millers have in transmitting cultural history.
The miller is the first Dutch entry on the Unesco list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
‘The craft of the miller in operating windmills and watermills involves the knowledge and skills necessary to operate a mill and maintain it in a good state of repair,’ Unesco said in announcing its decision.
Millers now also play a key role in transmitting the related cultural history. Mills, and therefore the miller’s craft, play a significant social and cultural role in Dutch society, Unesco said.
Unesco also points out that the Netherlands has implemented various measures to safeguard the craft and that and the Guild of Volunteer Millers, established in 1972, offers training and ongoing support to anyone interested in milling.
According to broadcaster NOS, the Netherlands now has just 50 professional millers.