2015 Annual General Meeting
This years Annual General Meeting is to be held on Monday 12th October 2015 at the Dwight Center in the Grounds of Wisbech Grammar School. The meeting starts at 7:30pm and all members of the society are welcome. After the meeting, there will be a quiz, hosted by Roger Powell and entitled "How much do you know about Wisbech?"
Now in its 77th year, Wisbech Society and Preservation Trust is working harder than ever to safeguard the history and heritage of Wisbech, Capital of the Fens and Birthplace to Octavia Hill and Thomas Clarkson. The town's history has positively contributed to our modern society, having been the birthplace of the man who abolished the Slave Trade and the woman who founded the National Trust.
The preservation of the town’s stunning architecture is always very high on the Society's agenda and Fenland District Council consults the Society on planning matters affecting the town’s Listed buildings and conservation areas. Wisbech Society and Preservation Trust keeps a close eye on renovation projects as well as providing funding where appropriate. Through 2014 it worked closely with Fenland District Council on a Townscape bid for funding to regenerate the High Street, and continues with plans to restore the chapel of rest in the town’s historically significant General Cemetery. Working hand-in-hand with the Friends of Wisbech General Cemetery, the Society has ensured the site’s future.
An active and effective civic society, the Wisbech Society and Preservation Trust takes great pride in the commemoration and celebration of the town’s cultural past, including its many eminent citizens – the Society has installed blue plaques on several relevant buildings around the town.
Membership is open to all, with the annual fee not only helping fund the Society’s many and varied activities, but also allowing access to a programme of fascinating winter lectures and a series of exclusive trips in the spring and summer months. And thanks to the Society’s association with Civic Voice, members also receive one free entry to a National Trust property and one free admission to an English Heritage site per year.
FIRST STAGE HERITAGE LOTTERY FUNDING FOR WISBECH HIGH STREET
In September 2014, we included details of a first round Heritage lottery bid that had been submitted with a view to regenerating Wisbech High Street (Original text here). Fenland District Council have now received initial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund for the £2 million Townscape Heritage bid that will potentially assist in the regeneration of the High Street. As reported by Fenland District Council, "The project aims to deliver the restoration of a number of buildings and facades on Wisbech High Street and turn the former Cook’s Butchers site into an exciting new area of public space." Most notably, the statement highlights the fact that only 13 of the 30 applicants from all over the UK were sucessful. ( Click here to read more)
However, achieving first round approval with the HLF does not guarantee that full funding will be forthcoming, only that it monies have been set aside. As highlighed by FDC, "Development funding of around £108,000 is included in the initial award to help the council progress its plans to apply for a full grant at a later date." In order to secure full funding, it will be necessary for everyone involved in the potential project to work together in progressing a more detailed application.
A press release has been made by the Heritage Lottery fund, further detailing the potential allocation of funding.
As demonstrated by the comments made by Chariman of the Society Ray Johnson, all parties involved in the draughting and submission of the initial bid remain enthusiastic. In a statement included in the Councils press release, he was cited as saying that “As a local heritage society, we have worked on this scheme for the past two years and have demonstrated our wholehearted commitment to it by pledging £25,000. Now, as we move on to the second stage of the bid, we will continue to do all we can to deliver a project that will truly revive the heritage of Wisbech.”
Significant capital has been set aside for this potential project by its various supporters and in addition to the funds being made available through the Society, further capital will be injected into the scheme by Fenland District Council, Cambridgeshire County Council and Wisbech town Council. In total, pledged funds set aside in support of the bid total £500,000.
NEW! See our Lambert's Walk video in our new YouTube channel and our photos in our brand new Flickr account.
Wisbech's classical Georgian North Brink