The Weston-super-Mare Civic Society, set up in 1973, aims to preserve and develop the best in the town and district. It believes that change should be guided to serve the community’s interests, with new development of high quality and in keeping with the local character
The society believes that local planning should promote sustainable development
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The Weston History series
with John Crockford-Hawley
The latest Weston View is available now!
Weston History - Four Lectures by John Crockford-Hawley
The Civic Society 2016 Awards Announced
The Work of the Society
A regular part of our work is to monitor planning applications and respond to public consultations on the Local and Structure Plans. We aim to support development that will enhance the character and prosperity of the town.
The Civic Society successfully opposed plans for major development on the Italian Gardens in High Street and proposals to demolish the Old General Hospital in the Boulevard. We maintain a general interest in the street scene, the design of new buildings, conservation areas, the traffic system and local amenities.
The Society has produced a range of publications designed to celebrate the heritage of the town and the surrounding countryside.
We have supported many local initiatives including the establishment of the Blakehay Arts Centre.
WESTON-SUPER-MARE first began to attract visitors over 200 years ago. During the Victorian period it grew into a town of quality and character. We have a fine heritage of handsome buildings, parks and gardens, as attractive coastline, and beautiful countryside. There is much of interest and value to protect.
The society undertakes practical projects in the town. We have planted hundreds of tress, built walls and pillars and installed railings at Grove Park; repaired park shelters, converted the old windmill tower at Uphill into an observatory.
For over 20 years the Society ran a Heritage Centre in a converted building in Wadham Street.
What was the Society Saying in the Past?
30 years ago
There was huge concern over what the development plans for the vacant old Weston General Hospital in the Boulevard would like. The major worry was that the site was to be bulldozed and “feature high-rise” flats built. Thankfully this never came to fruition and the conversion to form the Henry Butt House plus other low rise houses on the site was an acceptable development.
The plans for Big Lamp Corner were welcomed with praise for advancing the interests of walkers and shoppers over the motorist.
The problem of the area in front of the museum in Burlington Street was highlighted and suggestions were made that compulsory purchase powers be used to be able to enhance the area. This issue is still with us in 2017!
20 years ago
A Design Brief was being prepared by North Somerset Council to include in a Supplementary Planning Guidance for the development of the Royal Hospital. The first Conservation Area in the town was approved for the Beach Lawns. There was a comprehensive article on sustainable development. 20 years on and we have a draft Supplementatry Planning Document for the Town Centre Regeneration.
10 years ago
There was strong public objection to the proposed strengthening of the sea wall and the installation of a secondary wall on the road side. Ten years later everybody agrees what a wonderful new promenade we have! There was an article about the Town Centre Trail (which is available on this website) and the emphasis that sympathetically designed new buildings can enhance a historic town. Re-use of old buildings can work such as the conversion of the General Hospital. 10 years we are anticipating plans for new buildinf=gs in the Town Centre.