Looking into the history of the Shredded Wheat factory for our Where Do You Think We Worked? project we found that the company that built the grain silos for the Shredded Wheat factory is still going strong.
Trustees were out celebrating a major coup following news from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). The Trust had applied for £50,000 to finance their “Where Do You Think You Live?” project and were awarded the full amount. Champagne was the order of the day and the Howard Memorial seemed a fitting place.
Sir Frederic Osborn (1885-1978) was, with Ebenezer Howard, one of the two most significant and influential figures in the
British and International Garden Cities/ New Towns movement.
He was first employed at Letchworth in 1912, moved to WGC on its foundation in 1919, and from the 1930's onwards worked
within the Town and Country Planning Association from where he was the prime mover in the campaign which resulted in the
New Towns legislation after World War II.
Much has been happening over the last few months as the Trustees pressed ahead with looking at options for a centre. A major step forward followed an offer to fund a professional Feasibility Study for us, which we leapt at. Now, after a series of meetings between the consultants and the Trust we are just about to receive the final report that will incorporate a presentation of the options. It is our intention to arrange a meeting with major ‘interested parties’ and to get the views of people like yourselves who have been supportive of the concept ever since it was first floated back in 2006.
The possibility of some serious cash from the European Union has brought the Welwyn Garden Heritage Trust and the University of Hertfordshire together as partners. Funds up to several million Euros are on offer. Announcing the link-up Tony Skottowe explained that the Trust had been approached late last year to join a group from Paris and Liege to apply for funds. “Aimed at Garden Cities, and how the idea could help town planning now, part of the project is to find ways to reduce energy use in homes. To have any chance of being successful we needed an academic partner”, he said.
After a few hitches the gathering of memories of the town’s early days is now in full swing. Dennis Lewis, who is leading the project expressed himself well pleased with progress. “We had a few problems with pressing the wrong buttons, but that is all sorted out now happily”, he said.
The Welwyn Garden Heritage Trust was recently invited to send a representative to an EU project in Paris based on the importance of Garden Cities throughout the Community. As it turned out Welwyn Garden was the only UK town to turn up out of all those contacted.