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Make a Difference Today



Minehead Conservation Society is all about conserving and enhancing the built fabric of Minehead and its environs as well as campaigning to protect its beautiful landscape setting from inappropriate development.

The society also arranges social / educational events as part of the appreciation of the local area. 

The society is affiliated to CPRE (Council for the Protection of Rural England).



The Society monitors all planning applications for Listed Buildings and those within Conservation Areas as well as  any it considers might be damaging to the overall character and appearance of the town.

It strives to encourage the local planning authority to adopt high quality design for all new builds, incorporating the use of local materials, and which will sit comfortably within their immediate surroundings.

Minehead Conservation Society welcomes all who care about Minehead and its status as an' Outstanding Heritage Settlement'. It offers the opportunity for like-minded people to socialise together and learn more about the history of the area, its many interesting buildings and beautiful landscape by providing a varied programme of activities.

Past Autumn/Winter talks have included such topics as ' Construction,

Maintenance & former uses of buildings on the Holnicote Estate ' and ' 10 Treasures of the Minehead Coast ' to 'Siege and Surrender of Dunster Castle ' and a Magic Lantern Show of Somerset Images.

In the Spring  & Summer visits have ranged from a trip on Flying Scotsman and a tour round the Two Rivers Paper Mill  to visits to historic houses such as Cothelstone Manor and Orchard Wyndham and the restoration project being undertaken by the Somerset Buildings Preservation Trust at Halswell where tea was served in the Temple of Harmony. Walks around different parts of the town also feature in the programme. 

For information on future activities see 'Upcoming Events' below.  Also see reports on recent events which have taken place in the blog section (click on 'Blog' at top of website pages).

The Society is affiliated to SBPT (Somerset Buildings Preservation Trust) and members are able to take advantage of the visits that it offers.

Minehead sunrise.jpg
Minehead Townsend House.jpg
Minehead Beach Hotel.jpg
MCS Tree Planting for Queen's 90th Birth

Tree planted by Minehead Conservation Society at The Parks for the Queen's 90th birthday celebration

Old Ship Aground MCS Plaque.JPG

Another MCS Plaque Fitted

The latest commemorative plaque installed by MCS - This one is at the Old Ship Aground, installed October 2020


Prevented Southlands in Northfield Road from being demolished

Saved the Beach Hotel from inappropriate development.

Stopped the cafe on the Quay (now called Echo) from being converted into a holiday flat.

Fought to keep green area and trees in front of Marley Close from becoming one big car park.

Managed to reduce an application for three houses in Whitecross Lane to just one dwelling.

Gained significant design changes to the buildings proposed for the grounds of Periton Mead and contributed to the listing of the main house.

Helped to save the character and setting of the Grade II Listed Ellicombe Manor .

The society has also contributed to the street scene of Minehead and raised the profile of the town in the following ways..

Master-minded retention of many of the old street lamps.

Proposed the installation of the street lamps strung across the Avenue.

Designed, commissioned and paid for the Fingerpost by the Jubilee Cafe.

Proposed ,raised all the money for and gained planning consent, to erect the Jubilee Clock Tower.

Started the campaign to save the town' s public toilets by setting up a petition and lobbying the local councils.

Planted a tree in the Parks Walk to commemorate the Queen's 90th birthday.

Led numerous walks around the town to raise awareness of its heritage.

Gained planning consent and paid for the historical plaques around the town.

Supplied photos and information about Listed Buildings and other notable buildings to the planners .


Minehead Conservation Society

(Incorporating the Woodcombe Society)

Office: Townsend House, Townsend Road,

Minehead TA24 5RG (01643 706258)



Committee: Principal Officers

Chair – Sally Bainbridge

Vice Chair - Tony White

Secretary – Jon Collis

Treasurer – Janet Davies

Planning Case Officer – Sally Bainbridge


  Please be vigilant, and if you see things that concern you contact the society via email or the website.  We rely on our members to assist us.  

Help wanted!  Would you be interested in taking minutes of our committee meetings and similar duties in the role of Secretary?  We meet about six times a year.  See advertisement in next section. Please get in touch if you are able to help or would like details.

It would be great if all our members could try and persuade a friend or neighbour to join the Society

as there is greater strength in numbers when it comes to major campaigns. Direct them to our website so they can see what we are all about and the activities we organise.




For months now, members have been asking me if I have any news about the Beacon Road Appeal.'Yes' at last is the answer. The Inspector's report has now been published and for the second time the appeal has been DISMISSED. It is gratifying to see that the Inspector has placed so much emphasis on the treed importance of the Conservation Area not only to the setting of the listed buildings but to it as the backdrop to Minehead itself. This result has been largely achieved by the valid planning objections submitted by all those who wrote. Thank you to all our members came up trumps in defence of Minehead. Mr Evans ,the Inspector considered that the damaging consequences of such development far outweighed any possible benefits.


The Society has recently enjoyed two outings and a talk. Firstly, the visit to Carhampton Heritage Centre was much enjoyed ,where we were warmly welcomed by Jane Jones. Following coffee and cakes, Jane explained how the centre came to be set up and gave us some of the history of the settlement. It was fascinating to hear about the ancient burial grounds found there. Following that the group was able to view the farming and agriculture exhibition at their leisure. They were also able to browse the 2,000 books for sale!


A real delight was the visit to The Great House in Timberscombe which dates back to 1690 and comprises of a Tudor building behind the Georgian frontage. After coffee and scones either sitting on the terrace in beautiful sunshine or in the pretty panelled dining room. Sheila then gave us 'a history through time' of the building before splitting the group into two, for a grand tour of both buildings. We saw the work Bruce and Sheila had undertaken to expose original fireplaces and other important features.It was not being over restored but cared for by people who love it. I would go so far as to call it one of West Somerset's hidden gems.


Members may be interested to know that in the Winter months the owner are going to run a 'pop up restaurant' every Wednesday evening at 7pm lit by entirely by candlelight. The menu ( available on the internet) will change each week. As they can only take 14 people booking is advised.


A report covering the talk about the Radio Museum has already been sent out along with details of the visits. Please do give Neil your support. He gave his talk to MCS free of charge and does a great job running the museum which is full of fascinating exhibits.


Our final visit of the season will take place on THURSDAY AUGUST 3RD. This is a tour of the Ashfield Reservoir and water treatment works , near Nether Stowey, not normally open to the public. It will be a free visit but we still need an idea of numbers. If you are interested in going please email or ring Jan on 01643 702642 and we will send you details of timing and how to get there once Sue Goodland has sent them through.


Keep on fighting to preserve the best of Minehead









Advertisement - Book by Sally Bainbridge



The society's long standing Secretary stepped down and we are therefore looking for a volunteer to take up this role.  The duties are light, but of great importance to the successful running of the society and include preparing the agendas for Committee Meetings, taking minutes, assisting with preparing newsletters and emailing society members as necessary.


If you are interested, or would like to have a discussion about the role whilst considering it further, please contact Sally Bainbridge, Chair.  This may be done using the society's contact details on the relevant page of this website.


A guided walk around Higher Town, Minehead, to be led by Tony White, who has a wealth of interesting information to share with you.  The walk will begin at the lower end of Martlett Road at 10.30am Thursday 14th September 2023 taking 1 1/2 hours approx.
Members - £1. Non members - £3
Minehead Higher Town.jpg


Townsend House, Townsend Road, Minehead TA24 5RG

01643 706258

Thanks for submitting!


Membership runs for twelve months from 1st October in any year.
The annual subscription is £12 for an individual, and £18 for two persons living at the same address.
Payment is by cash or cheque.  Cheques should be made out to:  Minehead Conservation Society, and sent to the Treasurer:-
Janet Davies , 4, Heather Close, Ellicombe, Minehead TA24 6LL
Please provide the following information along with your payment:
Name/s _______________________________________________________
Full Address _______________________________________________________
Postcode ______________________
Tel No: ___________________________________ 
E-mail ____________________________________

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