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Conservation Plaque

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In 1983 SIHG launched an annual conservation award. It was designed by one of our members, Tony Harcombe and consists of a plaque about a foot across which features the group's logo, name and the date. The plaque is cast in aluminium by J I Blackburn and Co who used to be based in Guildford, later in Godalming and are now in Bridport. The plaque is painted black with white lettering.

Previous awards were made for the restoration of five corn mills (Cobham, Cosford, Outwood, Haxted and Lowfield Heath [now moved to Charlwood]) and the only existing wind-powered sawmill Buckland, which also employed steam power ( more details). The latter mill was the subject of an article in Vintage Spirit, April 2009 pages 42-44. The SIHG 2004 Award Plaque is prominently displayed on page 43.
Four museums (Westcott Stationary Engines, Old Kiln Museum (the Rural Life Centre) at Tilford, Old Farm at Shere, Fire Engines at Reigate) and three for transport (Baynards Railway station, Basingstoke Canal, Old Kiln Narrow Gauge Railway) and three for buildings (Albury Pigeon House, Farnham Maltings, Chatley Heath Semaphore Tower) received plaques.
The 2006 award went to Les Bowerman for his collection of bicycles. The conservation plaque for 2007 was awarded to the Horsley Countryside Preservation Society for its work in restoring the Lovelace Bridges. Stony Dene Bridge has already benefited. See Horsley Jubilee Trail. The Charlotteville Jubilee Trust received the award in 2008 for the restoration of The Spike which was the Casual Ward of the Guildford Union Workhouse. Although just outside Surrey, the conservation work done on the Kempton Great Engines thoroughly deserved our 2009 plaque.
In 2010 the Chilworth Gunpowder Mills Group received the Award for conservation work.
The 2011 Conservation Award was presented to the Surrey Heath Archaeology and Heritage Trust in recognition of its rescue and maintenance of the former County Police Station in Bagshot.
The 2012 Award went the Rural Life Centre at Tilford for the half-size Wealden iron furnace and hammer.
The Wealden Cave and Mine Society received the 2013 Conservation Award for improvements to the visitor experience in the Reigate Tunnel ‘Caves’.
In 2014 the Abinger Hall Waterwheel and Pump, which had been restored to working order and then used to supply water for several years, received the award. The 2015 award went to the Farnham Pottery for the renovations which have preserved the orignal structures and allowed new uses to revitalize the complex of buildings.


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