Tony Hill, former Society Executive member and editor of this Newsletter, has let us see his collection of Ipswich Society Newsletters dating back to the early years of the Society. I will feature selected items from this collection in forthcoming issues with summaries of the contents. With all the benefits of hindsight, certain ironies and parallels with today's problems may be noted.
Issue 2*, March 1963
Forthcoming meetings. A list of meetings including a Special General Meeting at the Lecture Hall, Ipswich Civic College to discuss future activities; two or three talks 'on controversial subjects' illustrated by films or slides. AGM on 4 April to feature a talk by Mr Leonard G. Vincent on 'Planned expansion of existing towns'. 'Mr Vincent is the Planning Consultant recently appointed by the Minister of Housing and Local Government to report on the problems connected with expanding Ipswich to twice its present size.' A visit to the expanding town of Thetford is planned, as is an exhibition of the work of the Ipswich and other Civic Societies. A Symposium on Street Improvement Projects is planned for the autumn.
A report for the year 1962/3. The Streets Improvement Group (chaired by Mr R. Westlake, Secretary: Mr B.G. Law) is still the most active of the original 'study groups'. Reference is made to '... a scheme for the improvement of Upper Orwell Street. After a slow start there has been an encouraging response from a number of the property owners, and traders, in this busy but architecturally undistinguished street, and it is to be hoped to show what can be done to improve the appearance of the less glamorous thoroughfares of the town [several demolished in 2014]... The Group has also made a survey of the Cornhill, and prepared a draft scheme of improvements, which they have submitted to the Borough Surveyor for comment. This follows on their advising on the re-painting of the Town Hall at the invitation of the Borough Surveyor last summer.'
'Arising out of the work of the Street Improvement Group, the Society has started a collection of colour slides illustrating good and bad points about the urban scene in Ipswich. It is hoped that these will provide material on which lectures may be based, and it is intended to extend the practice of sending members to give illustrated talks on the aims of The Ipswich Society to clubs, groups and other societies.'
Meetings are reported on with Messrs Vine & Vine architects for the Civic Centre, showing the latest plans and models which had been before the Council. Similarly with Messrs Skipper & Corless, architects for the Greyfriars Development.
'The Executive has been meeting regularly... has dealt with a number of matters of amenity, including tree preservation orders, the disposal of household rubbish, alterations to Tower Street, and the future of the Sailors' Rest. They have also introduced the "Newsletter" and given some consideration to other means of publicity... The Society's membership list now has 251 names on it." (It is noted later that this is .2 per cent of the population of Ipswich; subscription 'still only 2/6d.') "The Newsletter heading... which appears for the first time with this issue, is the work of David Coleman in collaboration with Mr. Bernard Reynolds, who designed the "eye" symbol for the Ipswich Society after its founding.'
Signed by Hon. Treasurer W.G. Cook and Hon. Secretary P.E. Underwood.
The March 1963 Newsletter is Roneo'd on 10"x8" sheets, stapled; masthead black on yellow.
*If any reader of the current Newsletter has a copy of issue no. 1, please let the Editor know.