Thursday, 17 October 2019

Faded heritage signs on terraces to be restored

Faded heritage signs on terraces to be restored

HERITAGE signs on terraced houses in Henley are being refurbished.

The Henley Society has earmarked 17 signs that have faded or been
damaged.

Each one will cost about £440 to restore and the society has launched an appeal to raise the £10,000 needed to complete the project.

The society has agreed to pay for the first three signs from its own funds and two have already been restored. These are at Trinity Cottages and Cromwell Cottages, both in Greys Hill. Both signs had almost completely disappeared.

Both sets of properties date from the early 1900s and the society had to apply for listed building consent before the work could be carried out.

Geoff Luckett, who is on the executive committee of the society, launched the project after reading on social media someone asking why the signs had been allowed to disappear.

He said: “I saw a Facebook post that said it was a shame these signs had been allowed to degenerate as they have so we thought this is the sort of thing we should be involved in.

“We went around the town and made a list of all the sites and then made a presentation to the society committee and it was agreed that the society would finance the first three and seek more funding to do the rest.”

The other locations are Brooklyn Terrace in Boston Road, Toronto Terrace, Manitoba Terrace and Cleveland Terrace in Harpsden Road, New York Terrace, Montreal Terrace, Stanley Terrace, Gladstone Terrace and Canadian Terrace in Reading Road, Trinity Terrace in Greys Hill and Prospect Cottages in Greys Road.

Mr Luckett, 76, of Lime Court, Henley, said the society had received enough donations to refurbish half of the signs.

He said: “The aim now is to try to raise a bit more. It will cost about £10,000 to do all 17.”

He is seeking the approval of the owners of the properties before any work is carried out.

He added: “Once we have done the work we will ask the owners to maintain it and also to join the society, which costs £5 a year.” Mr Luckett, a retired managing director who is president at Henley Golf Club and a director at Phyllis Court Club, said the society wanted to preserve the fabric of Henley.

He said: “We want to maintain the historic aspects of Henley as far as we can. We haven’t got our heads in the sand and we are not against progress or anything like that.

“I am interested in preserving Henley’s historic status and to keep it a pleasant market town and not be overrun by needless development. We are not against progress in any way, shape or form but it has to be tasteful in a town like Henley and I think you might find that we become a bit more noisy as we want to raise our profile.”

Mr Luckett, who has lived in and around Henley since he was 11, added: “The society started in 1961 when the then Henley Borough Council posted a planning application to knock down the Catherine Wheel and replace it with Sixties-style shops and everybody was horrified.”

Among the contributors to the signs project are the Culden Faw estate, the A G Scoullar Charitable Trust and other people who wished to remain anonymous.

To donate, call Mr Luckett on 07860 145982 or email g.l.luckett@talk21.com

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