The Godalming Trust
Newsletter May 2011
Registered Charity Number 263033
Executive Committee 2010/11 1
Chairman‟s Report 2
Treasurer‟s Report 4
Introducing your Chairman 4
Local Press 5
Design Awards 2010 7
Did You Know? 10
Programme of Events 2011 11
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE 2010/2011
Angus Palmer (Chairman) Patrick Haveron (Vice-Chairman)
Karen Bryant (Hon. Secretary) Colin Venton (Treasurer)
Roger Edwards Tony Gordon-Smith
Jacqui Springsguth Colin Swait
Pam Talbot James Anderson
John Colligan Valerie Venton
At the Annual General Meeting of the Trust in September six new
committee members were elected. The new members have great
expertise in areas such as historic buildings, supply of and demand for
residential property in Godalming, and press relations. This expertise is
added to the considerable knowledge and experience of our existing
members. With the assistance of architects, town planners and other
experts co-opted onto our sub-committees The Godalming Trust can
give opinions that are of value in acheiving the trust‟s aim of
“promoting high standards of planning, conservation and regeneration
for the benefit of the local community in Godalming and Farncombe”.
At the AGM also we presented the Godalming Civic Design awards for
2010. Details of the winning awards will be found elsewhere in this
newsletter. The Godalming Trust presents the awards every other year
alternating with the awards given by Waverley. The Trust has agreed to
contribute £250 towards the educational element of the Waverley
awards for 2011.
Our planning sub-committee continues to look at every planning
application relating to our area. Recently members of the committee
have been to visit the sites of some of the more controversial
applications in order better to give an opinion to the Waverley Borough
The Godalming Trust has received a letter from a firm of town planners.
They advise us that a new plan for the key site is being prepared by “a
local Surrey house builder Country Homes”. They have invited three
members of our committee to meet with them to discuss their new
plans. We expect this meeting to take place by mid May. As soon as the
meeting has taken place we will report on The Godalming Trust
website, in the news section, the content of those discussions.
The Community Interest Company (CIC) has now been set up.
Godalming Trust Committee member Pam Talbot is a director of the
new company and will be urging the company to give priority to a
facelift for the town.
The Trust has just submitted its comments on the Waverley
Development Framework proposals. Generally the Trust is happy with
the Framework but we have made submissions on some areas of detail.
These comments can be seen on our website and, of course, on the
Heritage Days are on September 10th and 11th in 2011. The buildings
that are open are always very well attended by the public. However the
comment has been made by visitors who attend every year that they
would like to see some new and different buildings open to the public
on these two days. Your committee is responding to this request and we
hope to have something new to see this year. As usual we are grateful to
Stephen Goddard for all the work that he puts in, including leading
walks to look at buildings of historic interest in the town. We are hoping
this year that, in addition to Stephen‟s walks, the Broadwater ranger will
lead a nature walk around the Lammas lands. In the past these nature
walks have been very popular and well attended.
The last Sunday concert of the year at the bandstand will be on
September 11th and will, as usual, be sponsored by The Godalming
Members at the AGM agreed that the Trust should join Civic Voice, the
successor umbrella organisation to the Civic Trust. We have therefore
joined, though the annual subscription at over £500 is a heavy burden
for small society. Some concern was expressed last year that the Trust‟s
income might fall short of its expenditure for the year. However the
Trust then received a generous donation of £500. In addition the
Godalming Town Council generously met the full cost of Heritage
Days. In consequence we were just in the black. However later this
year, particularly in the light of the cost of Civic Voice, the Committee
will need to consider the level of subscriptions to The Trust. These have
not been increased for many years and, at £5 annually for an individual,
are very low.
At the 2010 Annual General meeting concern was expressed over the
financial situation of The Godalming Trust. It was pointed out that the
cost of belonging to “Civic Voice” would be around £500 per year.
Furthermore in view of the current difficult times the Trust might not be
able to rely in future on the Town Council for a grant towards the cost
of Heritage Open Days which is around £600 annually. In the event the
Trust received a very generous donation and the Town Council met the
full cost of the 2010 Heritage Open Days.
So for the current year 2010/11 it looks as though our income and
expenditure will be about equal. However we will face a similar
financial problem next year. The committee will therefore be
discussing at its June meeting the question of raising the annual
subscription. Our subscription has remained for many years at £5 for an
individual and £8 for a couple. By way of comparison of similar
societies, the Haslemere Society charges £8 individual subscription and
£12 for a couple. The Farnham Society costs £10 for an individual and
£15 for a family.
On the other hand the Godalming Trust has £13,000 in hand. It could be
argued that, again, considering the current financial circumstances of
many people, we should dip into our funds for a year or two and defer
an increase in subs until the national economy improves.
All of this will be debated in June. Your committee will keep members
Introducing Your New Chairman
At the last AGM Angus Palmer was appointed as Chairman of
Godalming Trust. Angus takes over from Ron Musk whose hard work
and expertise as a former town planner have proved invaluable to the
Trust over many years. Angus is a retired chartered accountant who has
lived in Godalming for the past 30 years. He has been on the committee
of Godalming Trust for 8 years, the last 5 years as Treasurer.
The local press value the opinions of Godalming Trust and are always
pleased to receive any comments or opinions The Trust has on local
matters. Here are a couple of recent examples:
THAT SINKING FEELING AS ASPHALT REPAIRS TAKE
THEIR TOLL – The Surrey Advertiser – 21 January 2011
Just weeks after heavy snow and ice left roads and pavements
dangerous for pedestrians, the condition of some of Godalming‟s most
attractive streets is again causing concerns.
Local organisations say potholes in High Street and Church Street could
cause an accident after they worsened in severe weather. Angus Palmer,
chairman of Godalming Trust said repairs should be a council priority.
“The pavements in many places are broken and uneven.” He said.
“Shoppers are tripping and injuring themselves. Church Street is a very
attractive street and generally the traders keep their shop fronts in good
order. The road surface, however, lets the street down badly. It is rather
like a well furnished room with worn, patched and shabby carpets”.
Several months of gas repairs were completed along Church Street at
the end of November, to general approval, but previous work has taken
its toll. Mr Palmer said there now needs to be a full restoration of the
original road and pavement.
Steven Haines, who lives in Church Street, said he had seen three
people fall foul of the uneven surface. “An elderly woman tripped up
not so long ago and there was another young guy who fell over the other
day and got a bloody nose. The weather hasn‟t helped but it started off
badly. Whenever repair work was done, asphalt was laid instead of
replacing paving stones, and now that asphalt is starting to sink.” He
said the street had once been very quaint and pretty, but it was now
spoilt by “shoddy work”.
Mr Palmer added, “We understand that Surrey County Council has even
greater constraints on its funds than usual. However maintaining
Godalming‟s streets could and should be regarded as an investment.
Well maintained streets attract shoppers.”
A council spokesman said they were working to repair potholes as
quickly as they could. “There‟s no question that the last few winters
have been very difficult,” he said. “The rise in compensation paid out by
the council has been evident between 2008 and 2010.
NEW KEY SITE PLAN DRAWS FRESH CRITICISM – The
Surrey Advertiser – 4 March 2011
A revised application to develop Godalming Key Site has been
submitted to Waverley Borough Council, provoking criticism over the
lack of public consultation. The new proposals were registered with the
council in February, and are only marginally different from the
previously refused application.
The mixed use development proposes 182 homes, made up of 48 one-
bedroom apartments, 115 two-bedroom apartments and 19 three
bedroom properties. The plans also outline the creation of 1,375 sq m of
commercial space for shops, offices, restaurants and cafes. Surrey police
Authority would also have a base on-site.
Angus Palmer, chairman of Godalming Trust said the application might
be a temporary measure to “keep the site from going cold”. “There have
been whispers that a more acceptable plan will be submitted in due
course,” he said. “There are also whispers that the developers won‟t ask
for eight storey tower blocks, and there will be fewer units. We would
be receptive to some small tower blocks, just not eight story high ones.
182 homes is overdevelopment. Room could be found for some more
family sized accommodation: there‟s a bigger demand for houses than
apartments.” He added that if the fresh application was just a stopgap
measure, it would be refused by the council again.
Design Awards 2010
These were presented at the AGM by Godalming Town Mayor Jane
Thomson. Mayor Thomson thanked the Trust by saying that saying that
Godalming is privileged to have such an organisation as the Trust, with
members that love and care for our building environment, past present
and for the future.
The winners were:
Winner: LUSSO homes
For: Four Town Houses, Quiet Corner, Shadyhanger
This development comprises four town houses, each of four storeys and
built in two blocks. Built on a steeply sloping site, the homes have been
designed to take full advantage of the unimpeded view across the town
to wooded Godalming Hillside to the south.
Extensions & Alterations to Existing Buildings
Winner: The Meath (Epilepsy Trust)
For: Single storey extension & accommodation
The recent project includes a new single storey extension residential
accommodation to provide comfortable individual personal units to a
very high standard and a new entrance area created. Each cluster of
accommodation includes communal areas with simple facilities for
refreshments and teaching cooking skills. In the process of updating
other areas in the original Mansion many original features, internally
and externally were uncovered and restored.
Refurbishment of Existing Building
Winner: Prior’s Field School
For: The creation of a new library complex
A new library complex, created from 3 smaller classrooms in a listed
building originally designed by C.F.A. Voysey. A very successful
project sympathetically executed and furnished in a contemporary style.
The new area includes feature entrance doors in a Voysey compatible
Restoration Work to Listed Building
Winner: Old Hurst, Milford
For: Extensive refurbishment & attention to original features
Originally a village farm house this is a grade ΙΙ Listed Building which
has been the subject of extensive refurbishing and attention. Many of
the original elements have been dated to the late 16th Century. As work
proceeded original features were uncovered and restored accordingly.
Winner: M & Co, High Street, Godalming
For: New Fashion Store
A very impressive upgrade conversion to a High Street store, that a year
ago, was a Woolworths.
Enhancement to Environment
Winner: Go Godalming
For: The Godalming Bandstand Roof
Organised by the Go Godalming Association with financial support
from the National Lottery Fund and local bequests, the addition of the
new roof to the bandstand completes a project of which Godalming can
be justly proud.
Winner: Loseley Fields School & Watts Gallery
For: The ‘Tree of Life’
The school decided it needed an art work to enhance a very „empty
looking‟ space by the main entrance. Working with the head of learning
at Watts Gallery and the Gallery‟s outreach programme, the „tree of life‟
evolved. A group of eleven students at the school were chosen to take
part in the project. With the help of artists in residence at the Gallery the
students produced a series of designs and then the much decorated clay
Di d You Know?
- Godalming appears in the Domesday Book of 1086 as
Godelminge. It was held by William The Conqueror and its assets
were listed as: 2 churches (both held by Ranulf Flambard) worth
12s, 3 mills worth £2 1s 8d, 25 ploughs, 40 acres of meadow,
woodland worth 103 hogs. It rendered £34 and had a population of
roughly 400 people.
- In 1726 a Godalming maidservant called Mary Toft hoaxed the
town into believing she had given birth to rabbits. The foremost
doctors of the day came to witness the freak event and for a brief
time the story caused a national sensation. Eventually Mary was
found out after a porter was caught smuggling a dead rabbit into
her chamber. She confessed to inserting at least 16 rabbits into
herself and faking their birth.
- Godalming was so successful in the early 19th century that it was
considerably larger than Guildford and by 1851 the population had
risen to 6,500.
- The first mayor of Godalming was Henry Marshall who also
founded Marshalls Solicitors in 1831.
- In September 1881 Godalming was the first town in the world to
have installed a public electricity supply, which made electricity
available to consumers. The electricity was provided by a Siemens
AC Alternator and dynamo which were powered by a waterwheel
located at Westbrook Mill. A number of cables fed seven arc
lights and 34 incandescent lights. When the original contractor,
Calder & Barnet, withdrew, Siemens took over the contract and
expanded the system. In 1884 Siemens failed to re-tender for the
contract to light the town and Godalming returned to gas lighting.
Electricity returned to the town in 1904.
- The band Genesis was formed in 1967 by Peter Gabriel and Tony
Banks while students at Charterhouse School
Programme of Events 2011
Sunday 10th July Summer Lunch at Jordans, Upper Eashing.
By invitation only.
Wednesday 7th AGM in the Octagon at The Church of St Peter
September & St Paul. 7.30pm start.
Saturday to Sunday Heritage Open Days. Your committee need you
10th & 11th to volunteer as a steward. A 2-hour shift on one
September or both days.
Contact Mr Edwards on 01483 428662 or
Sunday 11th Burys Bandstand. Concert sponsored by
September Godalming Trust featuring Godalming Band.
The Godalming Trust is a Registered Charity No. 263033 and the Website is www.thegodalmingtrust.org.uk
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