Maidenhead Heritage Centre
The important educational role of the Civic Society has led it to give enthusiastic support to the formation of a Heritage Centre for Maidenhead. In about 1983 a first initial review of possibilities of setting up a Heritage Centre was made and in 1985 a further report was written based on using the building on the corner opposite Waitrose in Moorbridge Road (the oldest building in Maidenhead!), which was then vacant. This turned out to be too small for a Centre but a committee was set up to pursue the ideas in the report. Eventually, in about 1990, the building now occupied by Team Focus at 18 Bridge Street, on the northwest corner with Forlease Road (opposite corner to Waitrose) was identified as suitable, being temporarily available and essentially rent and rates free.
In 1992, we joined forces with the Maidenhead Archaeological and Historical Society to establish the first Heritage Centre. In 1993 the Heritage Centre was hived off into a separate charity since its purposes had become rather distinct from those of the Civic Society, and Richard Poad was elected first Chairman of the new Maidenhead Heritage Trust. After a period of having to occupy a succession of temporary venues, a generous bequest from the late Ted Sammes enabled the Heritage Trust to consider a permanent location and is now firmly set up in Park Street.
The Maidenhead Heritage Centre and ATA exhibition and archive explores the history of Maidenhead and its surroundings, including the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA), which was headquartered at White Waltham airfield during World War II. The mission of the centre is to preserve and celebrate the area’s heritage for the benefit of present and future generations.
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