WELLS CIVIC SOCIETY PLAQUE AWARDS

Wells Civic Society Plaques are awarded to recognise distinctive features of the City, whether it may be people or places of merit associated with the City (Blue Plaques), buildings or streets with a distinctive history or association (Architectural Plaques), as well as local businesses (Indoor Plaques) that have made a long term contribution to the life of the City.

A full description of each of the sites is given on the Plaque Award map page

                          INDOOR PLAQUES                                                    ARCHITECTURAL PLAQUES

BLUE PLAQUES

The Blue Plaques are a series being installed across the city by Wells Civic Society, for which financial contributions have been made by a number of people and organisations which are acknowledged on the plaques.

City Arms

The City Arms in the High Street commemorates its use as the city’s gaol from 1606, following which an inn was incorporated into the site by 1689, and there has been an inn there ever since.

Brine's Brush Factory

7a Portway looks so different from neighbouring house as it is on the former entrance way to Brine’s brush factory

W.G. Grace Visit

English cricket legend W.G. Grace played on what is now the Wells Recreation Ground in 1867, and was out for a mere three runs.

The Wells Gallows

During the 17th and 18th centuries here stood the place of public execution for hanging, drawing, quartering and burning at the stake

Barclay's Bank

Here the notorious Judge Jeffreys tried 542 people in one day in 1685 for joining the Duke of Monmouth’s rebellion against King James II, and all but one, were convicted and 94 executed.

The Crown: Bert Phillips Photographers

Bert Phillips a 20th century mid-Somerset photographer worked here for almost 40 years

The Rib and Elizabeth Goudge

Elizabeth was a best-selling author in both the UK and the US from the 1930s into the 1970s, and inspired J K Rowling to write the Harry Potter books

The Swan Hotel

King Henry VII, Winston Churchill and Queen Anne of Denmark have all stayed at the Swan hotel

Edgar Wright director of Hot Fuzz

Film director Edgar Wright a student of Wells Blue School (1985-92) was director of the movie Hot Fuzz that was filmed in Wells

 

INDOOR PLAQUES

Fisher Family Jewellery Shop

The shop was founded in 1919 by Leon Fisher, the great grandfather of the present boss Marcus, in the premises now occupied by Specsavers. Later the Fishers moved next door to where they are now.

db+PAUL

The Paul family have run their business of caring for buildings in Wells for over 150 years since the late 1800s

Rock House Dentist Practice

Richard and Sue Leworthy have been running Rock House Dental Practice for over 30 years, which is in a Grade II listed building from the 1740s

Leon the Barber

Leon Tooze started work as a barber back in 1959, and now 73, he is still going strong with no plans to retire.

Browne's Garden Centre

Browne’s garden business was founded in Wells on a site off New Street in 1808, seven years before the Battle of waterloo, and in 1974 the business moved to the present Browne’s Garden Centre at Keward.

Wells Film Centre

Derek Cooper founded the film centre in 1992, and it has grown from one screen to three and switched from celluloid packed in big cans to digital technology with the films arriving online

Basil Powell Shoes

Wells has had a shoe shop at the top of Broad Street since 1863, first run by the George family then by Clarks of Street before it was sold to one of their employees, Basil Powell.

Earthcraft Shop

Julie Romeo has run Earthcraft since she opened it in 1979, and has no plans to stop now

Protec

The “three shops in one” family business of Queen Street in Wells have been recognised for serving the city since 1983.

 

ARCHITECTURAL PLAQUES

The Liberty and East Liberty

The Liberty is the area of land, including the Cathedral, consisting of Ritchie Hall, the adjacent Polydor Vergill house, and the corner property, Cedars House.

Almshouses in Wells

Comprise Llewellyn’s and Charles’ established in 1636, Bubwith’s in St Cuthbert’s churchyard founded in 1436, and Harper’s on Chamberlain Street from 1726.

The Market Place

Bekynton's New Works (1451-2) form the northern side of the Market Place, and the water fountain replaces a medieval conduit built in 1451

Sadler Street and Brown's Gate

From the mid 13th century Sadler Street has been the main entry to the city from the north along which are Brown’s Gate (c. 1450), the White Hart Hotel replacing a building from 1301 to c. 1497, and the Swan Hotel first mentioned in 1422

High Street

The High Street dates from the 12th Century, with King John granting the right to hold a weekly market and five annual fairs

St John Street

St John Street and Southover was the main entry to Wells from Glastonbury named after the Priory of the Hospital of St John the Baptist, founded c. 1220, which was a religious community area.

Guardhouse Lane

Guardhouse Lane is named after an eighteenth-century guardhouse used to house Napoleonic prisoners-of-war

Broad Street

Originally called Wet Lane and subsequently Water Lane, this finally became Broad Street when widened from a modest 3.5 metres to its present size in 1838.