Princess Beatrix opens Year of the Miller during the 50th anniversary of the Guild of Voluntary Millers
Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands opened the Year of the Miller on Saturday afternoon, January 15, during the anniversary celebration of the Guild of Volunteer Millers. This year the Guild is celebrating its 50th anniversary in the Zaans Museum in Zaandam. The first miller's exam was held in Zaandam in 1972.
The Guild of Voluntary Mills trains people who want to run and/or grind monumental wind or watermills. There are currently about 1600 millers active to keep the 1100 mills in the Netherlands running or grinding on a regular basis. In this way, cultural heritage is preserved for the future. The Guild has a department in each province that provides training for millers in their province. In 2017, UNESCO declared the 'Miller's Craft' as an intangible heritage. The Netherlands is seen internationally as a guide country when it comes to training millers.
After speeches by several millers and one of the founders of the Guild, Princess Beatrix opens the Year of the Miller. Afterwards she speaks with various millers about their experiences and the importance of the training for the profession.