Loved but not listed... help save town’s unique treasures
Cllr Ann Jones next to a marble fireplace at Tindal House.
RESIDENTS in Newton Abbot have been urged to nominate hidden treasures they’d like to keep for coming generations.
Most important buildings and historic landmarks in town already have protection by being ‘listed’.
But there are many less obvious features which contribute to the town’s unique character but which aren’t safeguarded.
Examples could include the livestock market’s iconic cattle and sheep sculpture, old street name signs or architectural features.
Historic England wants local authorities to identify ‘non-designated heritage assets’ such as buildings, monuments, sites, places, areas or landscapes. They do not have to be old and can even include graffiti.
Newton Abbot Town Council began compiling a list before the pandemic and now it wants to boost the project.
‘We want the public to tell us about parts of the town which they believe help define its character,’ said Cllr Ann Jones, who also chairs the Newton Abbot Civic Society.
‘Our aim is to compile a register so that when a planning application poses a threat we can demonstrate that people really want these features to stay.
‘Having something on the register won’t guarantee its future but it will certainly improve the chances.’
One example Cllr Jones is putting forward for consideration are the fireplaces at Tindal House, a property in Forde Park.
‘My research suggests the fireplaces are Ashburton marble and were installed when the building went up in the 19th century,’ she said.
‘I’d love to think we could include them on the register and thereby make some effort to protect them should a future owner decide to remove them.’
The town council took a stall in Courtenay Street on Saturday, May 14, to offer more information.
‘People were very interested to learn about the register and I’m sure we’ll soon receive plenty of nominations,’ said Cllr Jones.
Submissions will be assessed by a panel, including Cllr Jones and Museum Curator Dr Charlotte Dixon, with the approved list published and reviewed annually by Newton Abbot Town Council.
Expert opinion will be called in if required and owners of properties recommended for inclusion will be able to challenge the move.
l Submissions can be made at https://museum-newtonabbot.org.uk/community-heritage-register/ or forms obtained from Newton’s Place, Wolborough Street.
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