The Totsoc Plaques Project

The TotSoc Plaques Project

It was over a thousand years ago that the first settlement was established in Totnes, and there are still some buildings in the town which date back to the Tudor period and beyond. So the Totnes and District Society agreed it would be a good idea if visitors to the town - and residents as well - had the opportunity to learn a little something about a few of them, as they threaded their way up the main street deciding which coffee shop to patronise. It was eventually agreed that the plaque was the most appropriate (ie accessible) medium of enlightenment.

But first a number of decisions had to be taken and a number of hurdles had to be overcome. For example: Which buildings should get a plaque? Who do we have to square it with in order to get the go- ahead? What will the plaques be made of? What do we put on them? And, of course, Who is going to pay? However, after lengthy correspondence with owners and tenants; town, district and county councils - which took up the best part of a year - it was eventually agreed that the four sites below should be graced with a plaque.

Click on an image for more details.

The Town Mill
The Guildhall
The Museum
The East Gate

Unfortunately within a fortnight of it being attached to the wall near the East Gate that plaque was removed by a/some local vandal(s) and has yet to be returned. We live in hope!

While all this was going on TOTSOC secured the participation of a local monumental mason, without whose help the project would never have been completed. Steve Allwood recommended that they be made of slate and undertook to be responsible for putting TOTSOC's text onto the material. The total cost of the project was just under £1400, and was made possible by a matched funding grant under the Awards for All Scheme, which is part of the National Lottery. It was the late Luke Fitzherbert who held our hand during this process.

So next time you're in Totnes why not search out the buildings - and the plaques, which will tell you a bit about them. The Totnes Image Bank has taken the photographs of the plaques and the buildings, so it shouldn't take too long, Incidentally the Image Bank is housed in one of the 'plaqued' buildings, the Town Mill, and that's worth a visit too!

John Keleher
April 2009