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Central Conservation Area 50th anniversary

The Civic Amenities Act of 1967 introduced conservation areas as a means to protect and improve the character of areas of architectural or historic interest. There were many pressures on the centre of Cambridge back in the 1960s, and the conservation area was a response to some of these.

There has been much development since, and the continuing growth of Cambridge means the role of the conservation area and the heritage it highlights remain key to the character of the city of Cambridge.

We marked the 50th anniversary of the designation of Cambridge Central Conservation Area No. 1 in 1969 with displays and presentations. They looked at change in the city centre over the last 50 years, with speakers reflecting on the future for the conservation area.

It featured stalls and displays including materials from the Cambridgeshire Collection and local architects, alongside artwork from Jon Harris, a long term resident of the city and artist.

Archaeologist Quinton Carroll and Historic England’s outgoing regional director John Neale gave presentations on recent development in the conservation area. Steven Bee, chair of the Historic Towns & Villages Forum provided a perspective from involvement around the country.

As part of the celebration, we invited you to vote on your preference for the best new, refurbished, extended or conserved building in the city centre from a shortlist of nominated buildings. Ballot papers were available in the afternoon, and the nominations were:

The winner was voted to be the Jerwood Library at Trinity Hall.

We ran the event with the Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service and Cambridge Past Present & Future.

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