The celebration of the Georgian Group’s 80th Anniversary took place on the evening of 22nd June and was attended by members and their guests. Our Assembly en Fête echoed some of the eighteenth-century delights of an al fresco entertainment with canapés and champagne, but came with an important fundraising message, tied to the launch of our Oak Fund.
In the words of our President, the Duke of The Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry KBE DL FSA FRSE:
For 80 years the Georgian Group has fought battles for bricks and mortar, for the
survival of extraordinary craftsmanship, for rare gifts of creativity and imagination. To
all of that done by brave predecessors and achieved in the face of dreadful apathy and
outright philistinism we raise our glasses many times over. Tonight we seek to couple
that celebration to a rekindling of the essential spirit that animated times past. Without
living, breathing and emotional souls we do little more than conserve monuments to
the past rather than opening the opportunities, as we believe with all our hearts they
offer for the future. In that great era of eighteenth century enlightenment and discovery
society advanced in leaps and bounds, at once open to the new but at the same time
knowledgeably respectful of what the past could teach us. In that there is surely a lesson
for our own curiously unsettled times.
I must make special mention of our Patron, His Royal Highness The Prince of
Wales, whose deeply knowledgeable support for the Georgian Group is a constant
source of encouragement and who has made this manifest in his generous donation of a
Garden Tour and Champagne tea at Highgrove.
Finally no words are adequate to thank the Chairman of the Anniversary
Committee, Bettina Harden, whose verve and passion has inspired everyone to
fresh heights of energy. The Georgian Group needs resources to grow, to broaden its
educational mission, to enlarge its support base amongst friends here and in America,
and especially with the next generation of architects, art historians and the allimportant
planners. Specifically, tonight, Bettina has established The Oak Fund to help
spread the amount of casework we can undertake, researching planning applications
and advising on them around the country. Thanks to you, it will be growing and
flourishing long after we stumble, happy and exhausted, into the night.
We wish you all a most memorable evening and we offer you our warmest thanks.
The event raised funds for the Group’s casework, a key element of our statutory obligations, and the coal-face of our conservation work. Anyone interested in donating to the Oak Fund may do so by requesting a form or downloading one here: