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of The Portchester Society
As early as 1973,
it came to the notice of local residents that there was a proposal for a large housing development on
the land which now is known at Castle Shore Park. Soon afterwards an application was lodged by Warings, in association
with Vosper Thorneycroft and a Dutch company, to infill 11.2 acres, later reduced to 5.5 acres, of Portchester Lake, between
Vosper Thorneycroft and the Castle Shore Park, and to develop this for industrial use. Portchester Sailing Club were
opposed to this development as they believed that it would contribute to the further silting of Portchester Lake. Sufficient
residents of Portchester responded to this threat by forming the Portchester Lake Action Group (PLAG) under the chairmanship
of Mrs. Jean Barr-Taylor. The PLAG was disbanded when it became apparent that the infilling scheme would not proceed.
Growing public concern about the undesirable consequences of an increasing number
of development proposals, gave rise to a public meeting held on 15th. November 1978 to gauge what level of support
there would be for an organisation dedicated to “conserve and protect the heritage of the village and its surrounding
waters and enhance the quality of life in Portchester”.
The inaugural meeting of The Portchester Society was held at the home of Rev. Jackson,
on 29th. November 1978. It was the decision of that meeting, chaired by Mrs. Isobel Snocken J.P., that the
organisation should be known as The Portchester Society, and Mrs. Snocken was duly elected as the Society’s first chairman.
In 1980 the Portchester Society published
a booklet, ‘A Portchester Walk’.
Members of the Society took a leading role in 1992 in a fund-raising group whose purpose was to renovate the
lych-gate at St. Mary’s Church and save it from falling into decay.
In 1999 the Society, with assistance from the ‘Awards for All’ millennium
grant, decided to place twelve blue plaques on buildings of historical interest around the village. This project was
followed by the production of a booklet describing the project and the plaques together with their locations.
In 2003, three members of the Portchester Society produced an illustrated book entitled “Portchester”
containing many historic photographs illustrating life in the village during the early years of the twentieth century and
earlier. This has sold well and has been reprinted several times.
In 2006, in association with other organisations, they planted the Trafalgar Oaks
to the west of Nelson’s Monument on the hill above Portchester and in the village, including all the schools, in commemoration
of the 200th. anniversary of the death of Admiral Lord Nelson.
Charity Number 290778