The first AGM for the South West Regional group kicked off our day in Truro on Saturday 22 October. Held in New County Hall Truro (F.K. Hicklin, succeeded by A.J. Groves 1963-6) it was a treat to be based in the beautiful main Council Chamber. Council Chairman Ann Kerridge welcomed us and emphasised how much she and fellow Councillors appreciate this building, described in its List Description as ‘a rigourous and consistent design of high quality’.
Following our brief AGM, where the current Regional committee was all re-elected, we had an interesting talk from Peter Beacham on the issues involved in the updating of Pevsner’s Cornwall. Then Jerome Tait, Advisor for Historic England in the South West, talked about and illustrated various issues concerning the listing of buildings at risk. It was good to have this introduction to his work and we intend to liaise more closely in the future and Jerome promised to flag up any listing applications in our region and which may concern the C20 Society in the future.
Paul Perry, of PBWC Architects, then illustrated the work his practice has done sympathetically renovating and has updating County Hall, before giving us a guided tour of key areas of the building. We finished in the Chairman’s office where Ann Kerridge proudly showed the cocktail cabinet integrated into the wall panelling, complete with some period bottles!
Our group then set off for central Truro where John Stengelhofen gave us an excellent tour of C20 highlights with accompanying notes. We finished at Alverton Court, which John describes as ‘probably the best small housing development of the 1960s in the county’ and were welcomed into the home of Robert and Gina Moore.