History of GMPRG

Origins under Chiltern District Council

GMPRG was originally inaugurated in 2003 and named Great Missenden Parish Revitalisation Group. View original constitution

Our original remit came from Chiltern District Council (CDC), being one of seven ‘revite groups’ under the CDC umbrella. These were based in Amersham, Chalfont St Peter, Chalfont St Giles/Jordans, Chesham, Little Chalfont and Great Missenden/Prestwood.

Independent of the Council, these volunteer-led community groups were well valued for their work and the outcomes they achieved. They provided a forum and focus for regeneration projects to improve the quality of life for residents in their communities.

Each group devised projects which aimed to contribute to the social, economic and environmental development of their communities. They also led a Market Town Health Check to identify areas of need & large scale projects for which funding is essential.

Each group strove to provide a spectrum of views & interests through those directly involved with the Groups, and by reaching out to groups within communities, and through consultation.

Among developments from GMPRG’s early years was the identification of the absence of a newspaper focussing on our community. Hence GMPRG worked with a range of local people and organisations to develop our own: The Source for HP16.

In 2016, a major ‘placemaking’ consultation was undertaken at the corner of the A4128 at the junction of Wycombe Road, Honor End Lane, Chequers Lane and the High Street.

2018 Relaunch

The passing of GMPRG Chair, John Skrimshire, in November 2016 and retirement of John Martin as Treasurer led to a year of inactivity, and the need for a ‘reset’.

Having volunteered as a member of the Prestwood revitalisation sub-group (PRG), Carole Eaden kindly agreed to take over as Acting Chair with Tony Pennell as Acting Treasurer in 2017. Several meetings were held in order to build up a new team of volunteers prior to an Annual General Meeting being held on 22 January 2018.

At the 2018 AGM, it was agreed that the Group should be renamed to Great Missenden & Prestwood Revitalisation Group (incorporating the villages of Ballinger, South Heath & Heath End) and the Constitution was updated.

Members of GMPRG’s sub-group, Prestwood Revitalisation Group (PRG), also formally became members of GMPRG’s new committee at the 2018 AGM.

Documents from the 2018 AGM:

AGM Minutes 22_01_18_ (003)
Chair’s presentation to 2018 AGM
Accounts for financial years to 30 June 2016 and 30 June 2017
Examiner’s Reports for financial years 2015-2016 and 2016-2017

An explanatory presentation by David Gardner, former Active Communities Officer, Chiltern District Council & South Bucks District Council, gives a very useful overview of the work of the Revite Groups.

To inform its work, GMPRG launched a survey, the ‘Community Vision Update’ in 2018.

GMPRG within a unitary Buckinghamshire Council

With the transition to a unitary structure, Buckinghamshire Council decided to stop funding the revite groups. This was a considerable disappointment. Extensive lobbying by the revite groups extended funding for one year, but now GMPRG operates in a post-unitary world, which has required considerable thought to define its future direction and viability.

GMPRG has taken the decision to focus its activities on the community of Prestwood. Our goals and what we do remain much the same, but we have been learning to adapt to a new funding model, and we are focussed on building deeper links with residents, groups and organisations around Prestwood.

Christopher Black succeeded Carole Eaden as Chair of GMPRG, and our immediate future direction is summarised in his Chair’s report from the 2023 AGM.