Tarmac horror at Pittville Gates – the latest news

The photo shows what resulted from some work carried out at Pittville Gates by Severn Trent. Paving slabs and granite setts, paid for by money raised by Friends of  Pittville, were removed and replaced by tarmac infill at the end of the work. This  severely compromises the architect designed paving pattern and is unacceptable. Following lobbying of Gloucestershire Highways, helped by Cllr John Payne, and of Severn Trent by local resident, Gareth Swain, the latest news is that Seven Trent will reinstate the original design and have sourced the necessary materials. However, we are still waiting to hear when it will be done.

Pittville Park retains Green Flag award and Green Heritage status

The Park first received a Green Flag award and Green Heritage status in 2016. Following a recent review it was decided that the awards would be renewed for yet another year. Working in partnership with the CBC Green Space team the Friends of Pittville volunteers have made a major contribution to this success.

Recent work by Green Space Volunteers in the Park

The Green Space Volunteers (working in small socially-distancing groups) have achieved a great deal in the last 2 months, with an average of 26 people working on each occasion. Jobs have included pruning shrubs round the Scout Hut and a tree canopy near the Central Cross Cafe, edging paths and cleaning around benches, clearing the path behind Dunalley school and thinning out the small trees there, spreading bark on the path near Tommy Taylors Lane, weeding and pruning shrubs near the West Bridge, clearing the snowdrop bank on the west side ready for spring, weeding the aviary beds, clearing up at Pittville Gates, and litter picking.  In addition work has continued on the 2 projects, the rockery near the play area and Bed 38 (at the Wellington Road/Evesham Road corner), removing weeds and unwanted growth ready for replanting beginning in November.

Leaning cherry tree is removed

The badly leaning cherry tree in Bed 38, by Wellington Road, has been removed. It will be replaced by 3 cherry trees, one of which will carry the memorial plaque from the old tree. After yet more weeding the bed will be replanted with the 3 trees and a selection of shrubs with the aim of creating an attractive corner at all times of the year.  The planting is being funded by Friends of Pittville.

Pittville History Works Completes Major Project

October 2020 has seen the completion of the ambitious project undertaken by Pittville History Works, the research arm of Friends of Pittville, to collect details about the inhabitants of Pittville in the past.

The main sources were the ten-year national censuses from 1841 onwards, electoral rolls and Cheltenham’s various street directories. At first it was planned to cover the period from around 1830 – the beginning of the Pittville estate – up to 1901. Subsequently this was extended to 1945. All of the data has been  loaded on to the Pittville History Works database, http://pittvillehistory.org.uk/service7.php? , which can be consulted online by researchers in Cheltenham and around the world.

This work has now been completed and the names and details of 18,804 people have been added to the database. In many cases there is only a name and an address; but for some people there is a full life history. The work has been done by   five or six group members at any one time transcribing data from the censuses and directories.

This data will form the basis for further research into life in Pittville, which has seen a number of changes over its history. It was designed as a private estate for the well-to-do, and many early residents came from British India and elsewhere overseas, attracted by promises of a healthy environment, a good education for their children, and congenial company. The data also shows that many leisured Scots and Irish people bought or leased Pittville’s new housing stock in the first half of the 19th century. As the nineteenth century progressed, the profile of Pittville reflected wider changes in society. Gradually, household size reduced, and the largest Pittville houses often found a new function, as schools or even in one instance as a nunnery. By the time of the First World War many of the houses were beginning to be broken up into multi-occupancy, and a new brand of resident poured into Pittville: teachers, office clerks, and shop-assistants.

Each of the 18,804 Pittville residents has their own tale to tell and one of the next PHW projects will be to tell more of their life stories.

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© Friends of Pittville 2020, Created by Daniel Espley


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