The Bath Preservation Trust was founded in 1934 as a small pressure group, with the object of protecting the city’s unique architectural heritage. Its first action was to fight plans to pull down parts of the picturesque Georgian city of Bath, in England, to make way for a new road. The road was never built. Since this victory, the Trust has saved hundreds more listed buildings from demolition, and has successfully confronted many similar threats to the City. Today the Trust has approximately 1,400 subscribing members from the UK and overseas supporting its work.
The Trust exists to preserve the historic character and amenities of Bath, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the only city in the UK afforded World Heritage Status. The popularity of this beautiful city does have its disadvantages for there are constant threats to the city’s 6,400 listed buildings, unsympathetic urban intrusions and an increasing threat of development in the city’s green belt. The Trust resists harmful changes to the architectural integrity of the City but supports appropriate new developments. A major part of the Trust’s work is reviewing all planning applications and listed building consent applications submitted to Bath & North East Somerset Council and responding as necessary.
Working positively, the Trust contributes financially to remedial works that enhance the city’s Georgian character. On a larger scale, it has rescued properties as diverse as cottages which once housed artisans who built the great Georgian architectural set pieces, and the historically significant Beckford’s Tower, now owned by the Bath Preservation Trust and run as a museum.
The Bath Preservation Trust is an independent charity, registered with the Charity Commission of England & Wales, and is a company limited by guarantee. It has a voluntary Chairman and board of Trustees, approximately ten permanent staff and 1,400 subscribing members. With prudent management the Trust is financially self-sufficient and independent of any controlling agency; a unique position for a heritage organization to hold within the UK.