The Glastonbury Conservation Society was founded in 1971 in appreciation of our built and natural environment here at Glastonbury, in Somerset, England.

The society has so far planted 51,800 trees in and around Glastonbury. Tree-planting volunteers always welcome. Contact Alan Fear, 83 3185.

Glastonbury chosen for potential £25m in Town Deal plan

Jim Nagel

Glastonbury is one of the 100 towns in Britain listed in the government’s plan to regenerate town centres, boost business and improve infrastructure. For each town £25 million is on offer; the town must present viable and ambitious schemes.

“But time is not on our side,” said Ian Tucker, the town council’s delegate on the Town Deal board. “We must put together a plan by the end of July. People really need to think about what we could take forward to the Town Deal board.”

A special meeting of the town council on Tuesday March 3 will work on “new out-of-the-box thinking.”

Ian said: “The reason Glastonbury has got the money is that we have one of the most deprived wards in the country. So whatever we bring forward has to make a difference for us all.

“In Glastonbury we tend to do things differently from other parts of the country. Something green would accord with the new mood in the land. What we need people to come forward with are schemes that are self-sustaining, or — even better — that generate a surplus that could be reinvested in the town.”

The Town Deal board here will have 12 to 15 seats, most of them non-Glastonians. “So it seems to me it’s going to have to be Glastonbury people that come up with ideas,” Ian said.

Statutory bodies each have a seat — district and county councils, Member of Parliament, the Heart of Southwest Local Enterprise Partnership, education (Katie Quinn, principal of Strode College), and Department of Work and Pensions (Lucy Martin). Current advertisements invite business representatives — youth, health, environmental (deadline noon Feb 21).

Glastonians so far are Ian Tucker, Jill Barker (Chamber of Commerce chair) and Jacqueline Cross (NHS).

The chairman is yet to be chosen. James Heappey MP as vice-chairman meanwhile holds the reins. The chairman has to be a businessman. Various people are encouraging Ian Tucker to stand.

Bridgwater is the only other Somerset town on the Nov 1 government list of 100. Like Glastonbury, Bridgwater lost its traditional employment in the 1980s.

Bishop’s Barn at Wells is next project for preservation trust

A centuries-old stone building by a grassy lawn. A clear sky is above.
The Bishop’s Barn is a 15th-century tithe barn given to the city of Wells 130 years ago for the use of citizens.

The Somerset Building Preservation Trust — of which our society is a corporate member — is trying to find ways to increase the community use of the historic Bishop’s Barn, in Silver Street, Wells. It is listed Grade I.

A number of studies have been carried out with SBPT and partner organizations, and these are now being considered by the Wells Recreation Ground Trust.

Mendip District Council is the sole trustee of the Bishop’s Barn; see their article on the subject. There is also a Wikipedia article about it.

The SBPT’s September newsletter can be downloaded from its website.

John Brunsdon, our society’s president, has stepped down from the SBPT committee; he was a founding member. At its annual general meeting on October 8, the SBPT chairman, Russell Lillford, thanked Mr Brunsdon “wholeheartedly” for the work he has done for the trust over many years.