Ordinary history is made up of many things and often in years the come the ordinary items that nobody ever thought to include are interesting to future generations. I think the short life of SMAC is history itself in the successful running a pressure group.
SMAC - Shephall Manor Action Campaign
When it became obvious in about 1988 that Shephall Manor was likely to be closed down by I.L.E.A. ( Inner London Education Authority ) I became worried about what would eventually happen to the building and held a series of meetings that attracted a large number of like minded individuals who eventually formed into a committee that worked for the future preservation of the building and surrounding park. Although it was a large committee it also contained some very talented and hard working individuals who set about the task with much gusto and I am proud to have been associated with them. We met on a monthly basis at the school with the full blessing and help of Roy Alcock ( the Headmaster ) and generated a lot of publicity, money and information about the school. It was an early stroke of luck that T Roger Smith, whom not much had been known about, turned out to be a very influential Victorian architect and Shephalbury in 1864 turned out to be virtually his first building.
We also had the full support of Mary Spicer who had done so much to promote Shephall Village and in many ways was custodian of the village history, her book "Tyme out of Mind" reads as well to me as classics of English such as "Akenfield" and "Lark Rise to Candleford". Others that gave their time graciously were John Hepworth who was fighting a campaign on the other side of the town for Foster Country and also Elizabeth St. Hill Davies at Stevenage Museum.
I include this list in no particular order 1988 to 1991
SHEPHALL MANOR ACTION CAMPAIGN
Jan Chapman, 46 Park View, Stevenage, SG2 8PS
Magaret Latham, 17 Wood Drive, Stevenage, SG2 8NX
June Lloyd, 56 Ox Lane, Harpenden, ALS 4PJ
Phyllis Batley, 30 Shephall Lane, Stevenage, SG2 8DH (TREASURER)
Liz Shaw, 6 Shephall Lane, Stevenage, SG2 8DH
Julian de Villez, 6 Shephall Lane, Stevenage,SG2 8DH
Dot Mackenzie, 14 Woodland Way, Stevenage, SG2 8BT
Betty Goodwin, 47 The Willows, Stevenage, SG2 8AW
Peter Harris + Heather Harris, 7 Shephall Green. Stevenage. SG2 9XR
Robbie Roberts, 78 Archer Road, Stevenage, SG1 5HA
Gillian + David Parris. 25 Rookwood Drive, Stevenage. SG2 8PH
Marion Clarke, 45 Fellows Way, Stevenage, SG2 8BS
Linda Bevens, 43 Fellows Way, Stevenage, SG2 8BS
David Watts, 24 Woodland Way,Stevenage,SG2 8BT
Richard Holton, 16 Four Acres,Stevenage,SG1 3PJ (CHAIR)
Roy Alcock, Shephall Manor School, Lodge Way,Stevenage,SG2 8DB (MINUTES)
Peter Menich, 7 Skipton Close, Stevenage. SG2 8TN
Wendy Austin, 45 Woodland Way, Stevenage. SG2 8BU
Margaret Foster. 3 Fir Close, Stevenage. SG2 8DA (VICE CHAIR)
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Mary Spicer, 250 Torquay Crescent, Stevenage, SG1 2RW
Pat Ackhurst, 15 Rookwood Drive, Stevenage. SG2 8PJ
John Hepworth, Dominic Cottage, Rectory Lane, Stevenage. SG1 4DA
Elizabeth St. Hill Davies, Stevenage Museum, Stevenage. SG1 1XX
Since this work sadly both Phyllis and Robbie have died and I would dedicate the Grade II listing of Shephalbury Manor to them and their work for future generations.
1st July 2002
Much more to be added to this page when time permits
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Good and frequent publicity was the oxygen of SMAC
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