Haverfordwest Civic Society was formed in 1970 by a small group of residents who were alarmed by the increasing inroads being made into (what is now called) the ‘built environment’. A public meeting held early the following year brought the membership to around 40, a number which has since grown to approaching 200.
The Society was established, in the words of the constitution adopted at the first AGM, ‘for the public benefit for the following purposes: (a) to stimulate public interest [in the area of Haverfordwest]; (b) to promote high standards of planning and architecture; (c) to secure the preservation... of features of historic or public interest .’
At the time of its foundation, the Society was chiefly concerned about the demolition of historic buildings, the suitability of new developments such as the riverside plan, and the impact of certain major road schemes. These priorities have altered only in so far as planning proposals have changed.
SYMBOL OF A TOWN
The logo of the Civic Society is the common seal of the Borough of Haverfordwest. It was made in the 14th century by royal command. The obverse (at top) depicts a medieval ship, indicating the importance of seaborne trade; the reverse carries the stylised gate of a castle.
See: Civic Trust for Wales
The Society has always sought, generally successfully, to maintain a harmonious working relationship with the planning authority under successive local government regimes. The planning authority, for its part, normally keeps the Society informed of matters under review, and invites its comments as part of a consultation process. The planners can always be sure of a firm and considered response. The Society has never hesitated to criticise and oppose, publicly if necessary, plans which it regards as detrimental to the aims set out above.
In pursuit of raising the public’s awareness of its heritage, the Society has an annual programme of talks on subjects of local concern. It makes well publicised annual awards to owners of the best newly built - or improved - properties in each year. It has placed its distinctive plaque on over 30 structures of architectural or historic interest: for example, 5 Victoria Place, childhood home of the internationally known artist Augustus John, and birthplace of his equally talented sister Gwen.
The Society has published an attractive guide to the Plaque Trail, also half-a-dozen other books about Haverfordwest, all by local authors. The most recent addition to the list is a beautifully presented and illustrated volume on famous, and not so famous People Who Shaped Haverfordwest by committee member Mark Muller, published October 2009, price £9.95.
For further details, please contact one of the below members.
Chairman; Dave Harries, 07704 354559;
Hon. Secretary; Lesley Turner, 01437 762865
Hon. Financial Secretary; Judith Small 01437 769724