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Description

This letter to The Victorian Society South Wales Group notifies them of an application made by the Civil Service Benevolent Fund to the Vale of Glamorgan Borough Council for consent to demolish a listed building. They wish to demolish the remaining joiners' yard stores at the rear of 26, 28, 28a Stanwell Road, Penarth.

The foundation of The Victorian Society began when Anne, Lady Rosse, inherited a well preserved family house at 18 Stafford Terrace, Kensington, after the death of her brother in 1946.

In 1957, she invited a group of 32 friends (who included John Betjeman and Nikolaus Pevsner), to consider creating a society for the preservation and appreciation of Victorian arts and architecture. The Victorian Society was founded in the same house, a year later.

From the beginning it was agreed that despite being called ‘The Victorian Society’, they would also include arts and architecture from the Edwardian period up to the outbreak of the First World War.

However, the founding of the Society took place against the backdrop of an almost universal dislike of the Victorian arts and all things Victorian, with a widespread destruction of Victorian buildings being common place in the post war reconstruction. The Society strove to avoid an over emphasis on London and began forming groups across the UK.

As the Society’s influence grew, so did its membership. By 1970, it had reached 1824 members, which grew to 3200 in 1980. The Society also began to be taken seriously by the Government, as demonstrated in 1969 following the passing of the Town and Country Planning Act. The Society was given a legal role in the consent of listed buildings system, as the Secretary of State decided that all applications involving demolition should be referred to the Society for comment. The Society has become a national society responsible for the study and protection of Victorian and Edwardian architecture, as well as other arts.

Glamorgan Archives, DVS/7
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