The first Cheltenham Civic Society was founded in 1925, but by the end of the 1930s it had ceased to meet. In 1950 a Regency Society was formed from the remaining members of the Civic Society and the Cheltenham branch of the local Georgian Group, but this too was short-lived.
However, in 1955 the Architectural Review published architectural critic Ian Nairn’s article ‘Outrage’ – in which he coined the term ‘Subtopia’ to describe the post-war spoiling of our towns and cities by a failed planning system – which raised awareness across the country of poor design, traffic planning and street clutter. And that newly stimulated awareness led to the reformation of Cheltenham Civic Society, which has flourished ever since.
In 1964 Lord Parmoor gifted the Society his house at 13 Lypiatt Terrace:
‘… that the Society should have a headquarters from which it can pursue its activities and use every endeavour to influence the future development of the town so that its character may, as far as possible, be preserved and its beauty enhanced.’
S W Daukes began building Lypiatt Terrace in an exceptional Italianate-style in 1847. Re-named Parmoor House in honour of Lord Parmoor, 13 Lypiatt Terrace dates from 1862 and is now a Grade II* listed building.