Reprinted from Newsletter 100, dated 2001 August–September

The society’s achievements 1989–2001


Clearance and refencing of Wearyall copse. Grants available from county council to mark its centenary. Copse replanted with oak and ash, winning a Civic Trust competition. Trees and landscaping at new rugby club off Lowerside Lane.


Wearyall Hill copse extended. Mendip consults us about extending the conservation area. Drive to plant more trees. Enhancement of the town centre after the relief road discussed.

Map of the Glastonbury Conservation Area showing a large area including the town centre, abbey ruins, and tor, shaded in green.

The Conservation area — shaded green on this map — was finally established in 1976 after stuggles with the old Borough Council. It was extended in 1991 to the Tor and Bushy Coombe.


Somerset Building Preservation Trust launched. John Brunsdon joins board of trustees representing civic societies. Vera Matthews gives up newsletter editorship after 15 years. Secretary Jean Gibson dies, also longstanding member Philip Lucas. British Telecom awards £3,000 for planting 10,000 trees on land around Glastonbury. Conservation Area extended to include Tor and Bushy Coombe. Huge planting in Tree Week includes 40 cedars at Butleigh avenue.


First cemetery chapel restored, welcomed by society; work by Rowley Bisgrove. Also Middlewick Farm conversion to holiday apartments by Roy and Avril Coles (visit by society). Royal Stuart coat of arms discovered by Neill Bonham at St John’s Church. BT Community Pride award for planting cedar avenue. Ten oaks planted along Street Road. President Stephen Morland to become a freeman of Glastonbury. Minor enhancement scheme at St John’s carpark by Mendip. Work starts on the western relief road. 21st birthday of the society and 90th birthday of president Stephen Morland celebrated by dinner in the Town Hall, preceded by a tour of the Abbey with Stephen. Barrie and Vera Mathews retire to the south coast.


Death of president Stephen Morland. Railings to be reinstated around St John’s Church; society donates £500. Roy Worsket recommends pavilion-style library at front of St Dunstan’s carpark — never implemented due to controversy and cost! Rook Lane chapel at Frome renovated — major scheme by Somerset Building Preservation Trust (JRB is a trustee).


Town-centre enhancement options debated. Listed romanesque fountain in Lambrook Street restored by Mendip. 120 oak trees planted in lines at Wick. Increasing concern over lack of progress on Morlands site. Bid to Rural Development Commission fails. Vice-chairman Ian Rands reports from Mendip Environmental Forum. Mendip publishes guidelines to shopfronts (long requested by our society). Treasurer Dennis Allen serves as mayor. Survey of footpaths for County Milestones Approach Project. Jan and John Morland promote bright colours for the High Street. First of the annual visits to Coombe House gardens, courtesy of Alan Gloak and Colin Wells-Brown. Death of Margot Morland and Muriel Jacquemar. High Street enhancement proposals unveiled.


Civic Trust study on town-centre regeneration announced; coordinator David Williams. Memorial walnut trees planted at Abbey for Stephen and Margot Morland. Northload Street and town-centre enhancement completed. Western relief road opens. St George’s Hall ramps and railings completed. Mendip scheme for enhancing shopfronts commences. Northload carpark enhanced.


Death of tree volunteer Dick Alderton, also of Betty Boyd, widow of society’s founder, and of Freeman Edith Rice, and of founder member E. Jackson-Stevens. £950 awarded from Civic Trust’s local-projects fund for tree planting. Market Cross restoration. Bumper year for painted lady butterflies. Shopfront enhancement continues, especially transforming Nisa to Heritage Fine Foods.


Abbot’s cope from 1440 cope restored and on display at Abbey museum. New lake dug at Abbey. Footpath diversion at Higher Wick Farm. Tribunal (merchant’s house) leaflet by Robert Dunning. Glastonbury in Bloom takes off! Crown Hotel becomes Backpackers.


Easter Cottage restored. Rethink on St Dunstan’s carpark as library site. David Williams back to manage “Get Glastonbury Going”. Final year of shopfront scheme, a great success story. Sustrans Willow Walk planted with society’s help. Deaths of Reg Collett and Helene Koppejan. “Talk about Tor” consultation for new conservation plan. Third prize in Civic Trust’s “Living Places” photo competition.


John Brunsdon 25 years as chairman. Mortuary crosses restored by Friends of St John’s Church. Jan Morland steps down as secretary. Glastonbury transport strategy report of questionnaire survey. New library proposed for Archers Way. Glastonbury second in Mendip in Bloom competition.


New Holy Thorn at St Benedict’s to complement the one at St John’s. Millennium kissing-gate donated at bottom of Bushy Coombe. Death of bird lady Sheena Rees. Millennium Town Trail planned. Death of Gordon Browning, maker of Glastonbury chair. Glastonbury won Mendip in Bloom for third time in five years. New library opens.


John Brunsdon made freeman and MBE. Geoff Brunt gains SSSI award for work on Poldens. Launch of Tor appeal for £250,000. SW Regional Development Agency buys Morland site; all existing plans withdrawn. SRB (Single Regeneration Budget) bid successful; projects go forward. And you are reading the 100th newsletter.