Alex Chalk MP on the High Street
Street Audit 2019
This year's Civic Day on 22 June was marked by revisiting last year's detailed audit of things that needed repair or improvements on the High Street. Redundant street signage, removal of graffiti, dangling electricity cables and cracked pavements all came under scrutiny. Volunteers were joined by Andrew Booton, Civic Society Chair, Cheltenham MP Alex Chalk, Steve Jordan, leader of Cheltenham Borough Council, and Councillor Tim Harman.
This year's audit largely concentrated on the seventy-two issues that Gloucestershire County Council and Cheltenham Borough Council acknowledged were their responsibility. Detailed findings of what issues have and have not been addressed over the last year will be sent to the councils so that outstanding matters can be looked at and attended to. Next, our Street Pride Group wants to look at ways of encouraging landlords and tenants to improve the appearance of their buildings and the High Street generally. Ideas welcome!
Alex Chalk MP, Andrew Booton & James Hodsdon with volunteers
Civic Society Chair, Andrew Booton, George Ferguson and Mayor, Cllr Bernard Fisher
Set in the excellent Chapel Arts building, Civic Society Chair, Andrew Booton introduced the 2019 Cheltenham Civic Awards. The biennial Civic Awards are mananged by the Civic Society on behalf of the Borough Council. Awards Convenor, Bruce Buchanan assisted the Mayor, Cllr Bernard Fisher to present the Awards and Commendations to the winners. This year, Bruce and his panel of 12, considered 33 submissions from which 10 were finally selected.
The winning projects are:-
New Building: Award
Tilley Mews, Swindon Road
51 The Park
One Bayshill Road
Building Restoration: Award
Formal House, St George's Place
Axiom Apartments, Winchcombe Street
A full list of Awards and Commendations, clients, architects and contractors can be seen in the 2019 Awards Brochure.
Kevan Blackadder at Parmoor House
BID works for all
Kevan Blackadder, Director of Cheltenham Business Improvement District, gave a most informative talk on 2 July about its achievements and plans for the future. Highlights include February’s ‘Light up Cheltenham’ and the big wheel (enjoyed by 10,000 people) and a YouTube video to attract more visitors, in conjunction with Marketing Cheltenham see here.
Asked what his top three priorities for the Town Centre Vision being developed right now, with the borough council, he said: “improving finding one’s way into and out of the town; the whole town must benefit from improvements for businesses and visitors, not just the wealthier bits; and keeping the town ‘special and different’ architecturally.
Captain Skillicorne declaims ...
On a slightly damp Tuesday 4 June, Captain Henry Skillicorne, aka Parmoor House Manager Phil Collins, led his band of Regency enthusiasts on a walking tour of his much celebrated spa town. The culmination of their most informative perambulations was a splendid afternoon tea and cakes at the New Club.
Freddie Gick, Neela Mann & Andrew Booton, and right, Freddie Gick holds a restored WW1 battlefield wooden cross
On Tuesday 7 May at Parmoor House, Freddie Gick and local historian Neela Mann gave a fascinating and yet moving talk and presentation about the World War 1 battlefield crosses brought back to Cheltenham after the war. Found rotting in the Bouncers Lane Cemetery, 22 crosses were rescued and conserved in a project initiated by Freddie Gick.
With the help of a grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the project led by Freddie, was successfully completed with the dedication and commitment of a team that included local historian Neela Mann, 14 pupils of Pittville School and their teacher, Hannah Taylor and the work of Stephen Umpleby's Artefacts Conservation Services.
A brochure and exhibition of the project will be on display at Parmoor House during this year's Heritage Open Days 13 - 22 September.
Members' Summer Party
Applications discussed at the
19 June Planning Forum