The Twentieth Century Society

Campaigning for outstanding buildings

Austin Village Civic Society plaque, Photo: C J Jones
Art Deco building, Birmingham, Photo: C J Jones

West Midlands

C20 West Midlands news September 2018

We’ve recently had some sell out trips including Droitwich which is really an undiscovered delight, Malvern where we learnt about conservation issues and investigated its interwar architecture, and a fantastic trip to Austin Village, Birmingham, where volunteers who live on this fascinating and delightful estate village built for Austin workers in 1917, (and currently under threat of de-designation as a conservation area, which would be a travesty) took us round and shared their passion and enthusiasm for the place. This was followed by a very sociable lunch and then a visit to an Art Deco private house where the owners welcomed us with open arms. We all adored it!

In August members of our committee plan are undertaking an assessment of public art in Coventry, that much threatened City of Culture. We plan to take photos and record what we find so we can react more efficiently and proactively to potential threats in the redevelopment of Coventry.

In September we are participating in national heritage week and Birmingham heritage by being involved with the opening of the wonderful Wake Green Road prefabs in Birmingham on Friday 7th and Saturday 8th September, and  Geraldine Hammersley, of our committee, is leading a free walk open to all, in Coventry on Saturday 8th September of some of the many public art works. We are planning an exclusive members-only private view of George Wagstaffe’s studio and garden in the afternoon.  Local members will be invited to this, as there are very few tickets available.

On 20th October Joe Holyoake is leading a trip to investigate the iconic architecture of University of Birmingham and in November we will be visiting Oxford. Our Christmas celebration in December will include some more historic films of Midlands architecture and development and, we hope, some more fabulous home-made mince pies. Dates of all events and how to book will be advertised on our events page on Facebook as soon as the information is confirmed. We also announce events on Twitter: @C20WestMids, or you can email for more  information.