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Welcome to the Stratford Society
Your Local Civic Society charity registration No. 251182
The Stratford Society aims to protect the  heritage of our historic market town and its residents. Founded in 1966, it  offers non-political, professional expertise on the town's buildings and their  surroundings. It works with councils and other organisations locally and  nationally and promotes high quality design in keeping with the character of  this world famous and much visited town.
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General Committee Update March 2015

The GC met on 9th March and took the normal updates of sub-committees. The key points arising were:

Historic Spine
Work continues to incorporate the proposals for the shared space between Bridge Street and Chapel Lane as a part of The Neighbourhood Plan work currently underway. Work on the shop front scheme has continued with The Society contributing up to £1000 to SDC’s £2000 towards architectural input and advice to would be shops participating. Slowly the appearance of the Spine shops is improving though we await improvements to the proposed new Tesco Express in High Street. We still await a response from the new developer for Town Square who has undertaken to consult on their development scheme.

Neighbourhood Plan
It is likely that, subject to the views of the planning inspector who is hearing the initial SDC Core Strategy hearing (expected 20th March), that a public consultation on the NP proposals will begin following the May elections.

Transport and Parking
The second public meeting involving our MP has taken place looking for public input to assist WCC develop schemes to improve traffic flows, particularly along Birmingham Road (recent publicity suggesting that the shopping centre along this road is the cause of most difficulties!!!! -- No surprise to any of us. The GC is of the view that a strategic approach to distribution of traffic across the road system is necessary together with good advance signing in real time. The NP contains most of the necessary improvements necessary and building support for this is important and we need to ensure that the WCC appointed consultant is made aware that much of the work has been done and avoid yet another new set of proposals. With one set of proposals we can work towards achieving LEP and WCC funding.

The AGM this year will be Monday 18 th May at The Falcon.

Visit Programme
The visit to the Fairfax-Lucy private quarters at Charlcote Park went ahead and was extremely enjoyable and Edmund Fairfax-Lucy and his wife Erica were most hospitable. It is suggested that we extend our appreciation through complementary membership.

The Society was invited back to further explore the history of the family and the house. Arrangements will be made for next year.

Next Members Event of the 2014/15 Season

Thursday 16th April 2015 at 2.30pm until approx 4.30pm

Stanway House and fountain

Jjoin us for a private tour of this outstanding example of a Jacobean Manor House owned by Tewkesbury Abbey for 800 years, and then for 500 years by the Tracey Family and descendants- The Earls of Wemyss.

The property is described as an enclave of very English and almost magical harmony.

The single jet fountain at 300ft is the both the highest fountain in Britain and the highest gravity fountain in the world.

We will enjoy a tour of the house with our guide and the fountain will be turned on especially for our visit! We will have a refreshment break during the visit and afterwards members have the opportunity to explore the beautiful gardens.

Click Here to download the application form and return by Friday 10 th April. (No tickets issued)

Please note that the Society does not provide transport in the case of trips and events.Members are required to provide their own transport and to ensure that they have adequate insurance in place.

Cost £9.00 - with tea and cakes available at £3.00.

Address: Stanway House, Stanway,Cheltenham, Glou, GL545PQ

(Between Broadway and Winchcombe)Enquiries: 01386584469

Next Members Event of the 2014/15 Season

Thursday 7th May 2015 at 2.00pm until approx 4.00pm

Hill Close Gardens, Warwick CV34 6HF

Please join us for a visit to Hill Close Gardens, on what I am sure will be a sunny afternoon! This is an exclusive tour of the restored Victorian hedged gardens of historic importance with Grade 11 listed summer houses. Built for the townspeople to enjoy green space above Warwick, away from the bustle of the town itself. Perhaps we will discover the echoes of the tranquillity still lingering as a tribute to the original design and purpose of these gardens!

The tour will start at 2pm and last until 4p approx: including a refreshment break with tea/coffee and cake.

The cost is £8.00 per person.

Parking (pay&display) is available on the right hand side through the racecourse entrance.

The tour route will take us over gentle gradients and through clear pathways so comfortable walking shoes are recommended.

Click Here to download the application form and return by Saturday 2nd May. (No tickets issued)

Please note that the Society does not provide transport in the case of trips and events.Members are required to provide their own transport and to ensure that they have adequate insurance in place.

Members Visit to Charlecote Park Wednesday 4 th March 2015

A large group of members gathered on a bright, breezy morning to meet Sir Edmund Fairfax-Lucy for a tour of his home, the South Wing of Charlecote Park. We divided into two groups to be led by our most congenial host and his charming wife Erica. This meant that after the initial introduction by Sir Edmund, it would facilitate the tour of the rooms to be in two smaller groups. It was both an impressive and fascinating experience. The hidden family treasures in the form of artefacts, beautiful costumes and memorabiliala was breathtaking. So much was brought to life by the personal commentary of both our tour guides. It was a glimpse into the past, but a living history as well. We all felt very nostalgic as we listened to accounts of the life led during the Victorian period in this home. It was as if Mary Elizabeth and family had gone out for the day, but would return soon to enjoy their afternoon tea in the library!

After viewing the family rooms we all gathered in the kitchen warmed by a roaring open fire, to enjoy coffee and cake served by our delightful hosts! This was the time for Sir Edmund to talk to us very informally about the compatability of living life in an historic house but in a modern time frame. The observance of blending duty, responsibility and family life in a building requiring constant attention. His amusing anecdotes and very heartfelt talk made us aware of the pleasure and concerns of living with such a legacy.

We left feeling much enlightened and so pleased that Sir Edmund had been able to share with us his experiences and that of the past history of a fascinating property. As Lucy Worsley says, “ If walls could talk”we would have been privy to many secrets I am sure!

Rosemary Applin


All dates and times are booked at the Falcon Hotel, so please put them in your diaries now.

Speakers or topics marked * are subject to confirmation.



Click Here
to download your own copy

Dates for your diary !Full details and booking arrangements to follow in due course.

All costs quoted are per person.  

Friday 3rd July 2015

Chairman’s Summer Party

Details to follow but put this date in your diary now !

Wednesday 16th September 2015

Sezincote House

Sezincote is a unique and extraordinary Indian house set amidst the Cotswold Hills just beyond Moreton-in-Marsh. Built in 1810, it was the inspiration for the Brighton Pavilion. Meet at 2.00pm for the tour which will last about one and a half hours.

Cost £11.50. Sezincote is close to Batsford Arboretum if refreshments are required.

Affiliated Organisations
English Historic Towns Link
English Heritage Link
Corporate Sponsor Links
George Pragnell - Jewellers Link
CA Rookes Wine Merchants & Shippers Link