The Henley Society

Protecting our heritage and the environment in Henley-on-Thames

Our aims:

The conservation and enhancement of the town, its waterfront and its setting.

The preservation of the town's historical centre, its fine approaches and its trees.

To strike an appropriate balance between housing, a vibrant town centre, the provision of employment and leisure.

The relief of traffic congestion with improved transport links, better car parking facilities and improvements to bus and train services.

Our People

An enthusiastic and energetic Civic Society focused on protecting and enhancing the quality of life for Henley Residents


Geoff Luckett

Vice Chairman

Julian Brookes

Honorary Secretary.

Karen Grieve


Sandra Moon

Membership Secretary

Veronica Carlton

Committee Members

Valerie Alasia, Dr Jenny Copeland, Catherine Notaras, Nora Scanlon.


The Baroness Buscombe of Goring


Sir Martyn Arbib


Lady Rosemary Hardie


The history of The Henley Society

The Henley Society was formed in 1961 when a major planning application was approved by the Henley Borough Council which would have involved the demolition of the handsome Catherine Wheel Hotel in Hart Street and its replacement with a row of 1960’s style shops.

Local residents and visitors alike were aghast at the idea not only of losing this splendid old building but that its own elected Council should approve of the shops scheme without due regard for the town’s historic street scene. Such was the local anger to this decision it resulted in the formation of the Society and the saving of the Hotel. Hart Street is one of the jewels in Britain’s high street scenes and to imagine it without the Catherine Wheel façade would be unthinkable.

Since then the Society has flourished; within the Society we have a team with considerable experience and expertise and regularly bring our influence to bear on difficult and controversial applications. This is not to say it has no time for modernising or merely wants Henley to be submerged in aspic. Quite the contrary. Whist the best of the past matters it is also necessary to incorporate the best of the future.

Additionally this non-political organisation arranges visits and events for members to see and enjoy all manner of historic and interesting places and to appreciate the need for continual vigilance on our environment.

Our watchwords are to work to maintain the very best of the town for posterity and to ensure that the highest and most sensitive standards are applied to future developments.


Membership Fees


£5 per annum
£50 lifetime

Join Now


£8 per annum
£80 lifetime

Join Now

Our Initiatives

Photo Gallery

Sponsored Solar Compactor Bins

The two bins are in place now-at Singers Park and the top shops in Greys Road and the trial will last until September.

Unveiling the Blue Plaque

The blue plaque was unveiled on 6th December 2022. The Henley Society was formed after a number of residents got together to object to the demolition of the hotel in 1962.

Columbia Terrace

One of nineteen Victorian terrace house signs which the Society reinstated in 2020/1. The cost c£8,000 was met by donations from generous members, local businesses and our County and District Councillors.

The Sheephouse Lane Tree Project

Members of the Society Committee, together with our generous member sponsors of eight trees.