City of Winchester Trust
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Chairman's Jottings - TrustNews Mar 18

I never like the Trust News publication deadline! This is because I have to consider what to write for these jottings! The Editor starts becoming jumpy because he still has not received my copy and I become jumpy because I cannot think what to ‘jot’ about which might be of interest to members.

This time, several things of interest have cropped up since the last Trust News, probably the main item being the garden alongside Water Close. Across the landscaped garden with its reflective water feature there is a beautiful view of the East End of the Cathedral. It is a well-known and much-loved place for people to stop alongside, to absorb the tranquillity of the garden and the glorious view through to the Cathedral. This garden has been up for sale, which has caused considerable concern to any number of people who obviously love this spot in Winchester. We all wished to know how protected it was against development proposals. We are aware now that an offer has been made and accepted, but we felt however benign this purchaser might be, the garden and its view should be protected beyond any doubt. With this in mind, both the City of Winchester Trust and the Hampshire Gardens Trust have been pursuing both listing and registration of the garden with English Heritage.

We were concerned that a member of the Trust had resigned over a planning application that affected their property. Two of our Planning Application Groups, which scrutinise applications, studied the application and although there were some adverse comments, the overall opinion considered the extension concerned was acceptable.

The P.A.G. panels are made up of people who are drawn from all walks of life and they are therefore a reflection of the citizens of Winchester. Each group does have a professional architect or planner to help guide the panel on reading drawings and interpreting schemes. The judging of a scheme has to be isolated from any influences that might be brought to bare by members, owners etc. Any member of the P.A.G panel who has an interest declares their interest and withdraws from deliberations. The finished comments might not be to everyone‘s liking but we try hard to come to a conclusion which is honest, uninfluenced from outside sources and reflects the majority decision of the panels. These rules are followed scrupulously.

As many of you are aware the City of Winchester Trust is a member of Civic Voice, as are many civic societies throughout England. Each year, Civic Voice run a scheme to select examples of architecture, architectural restoration and landscape design, which display a high degree of excellence in each particular category. Last year Design Engine and their client Winchester University won the best overall award for the restoration of the University chapel. This year we have nominated the Winchester College ‘Treasury’ which is the restoration of one of their oldest buildings, part of which pre-dates the College. The restoration has been beautifully undertaken and the overall affect of the restored interior, the display cabinets and general ambience, is testament to the skills of Radley House Partnership, the architects, and Mouldings of Salisbury, the Contractor. We wish it every success: the scheme will be competing against other such restoration projects.

Keith Leaman



( Flier for Volunteers to help with Local List)