Commemorative Plaque guidance


Maidstone has a number of plaques and monuments of historical and cultural significance. Plaques are an effective and visible means of celebrating Maidstone's heritage and our historic environment, tangibly connecting past and present, increasing pride among local communities and giving a sense of place to residents and visitors. Plaques can also play an important conservation role, helping to highlight buildings with historic associations and support their preservation.

Nominate an individual

Commemorative Plaques commemorate people and events who have contributed to the rich cultural heritage of Maidstone.

To be commemorated, a person should have lived or worked in Maidstone for at least five years, and at least 10 years should have passed since the anniversary of their death. An individual may not be commemorated on more than one plaque within this scheme. An event should have passed its 25th anniversary and have proven significance to the history of Maidstone.

We can only consider proposals for plaques that are sited within the administrative boundaries of Maidstone Borough Council. Please read the additional assessment criteria below before completing the nomination form and returning it to us.

Assessment criteria

To commemorate a person

At least 10 years should have passed since their death. They should be:

  • Sufficiently famous to be familiar to the succeeding generation or be regarded as
    sufficiently significant within their field.
  • Their achievements must have made a lasting and significant contribution.
  • The building on which the plaque will be fixed must be directly related to the proposed person, and they must have lived or worked there for at least 5 years or have had a
    direct association with the building.

In addition, please note that:

  • Plaques will not normally be installed on hotels or public venues (e.g. concert halls) where connections with the building were transitory.
  • A person cannot be commemorated on more than one plaque within the Council’s scheme.

To commemorate an event

  • The event should have happened at least 25 years ago.
  • The event should be instantly recognisable to many of the general public.
  • The event should be of special historical interest or significance in the history of Maidstone or the country as a whole.
  • The building proposed for installation must be directly related to the event.

Additional considerations

  • The proposal will be considered and approved by the Heritage, Culture and Leisure Committee.
  • The Committee will only approve plaques that will be visible to passers-by.
  • You will need the agreement of the building owner.
  • Exceptional cases will be considered on their merits, subject to the submission of a thoroughly researched and justified case.

Funding

Unfortunately, there is no budget to pay for the costs of plaques, so proposals can only be taken forward if the proposer or supporting group is able to meet costs.

Costs could include:

  • The making of the plaque (usually around £500 each).
  • The installation of the plaque (usually around £200 depending on the type of building).
  • Any legal costs (e.g. indemnification of building owner).
  • Research and validation (if required).
  • Any special costs around listed building consent or other planning consents.
  • The cost of an unveiling event (if required).
  • Ongoing maintenance and repair.

In addition, please note that:

  • The Council’s preferred plaque design is smooth Grey slate 18” [460mm] x 18” [460mm] x 1.25” [30mm]. Inscription to be “v” cut in the stone in Times Roman style and letters enamelled in light grey. Prominent features such as a named person or event should be gilded using 23crt gold letters.
  • The inscription should be clear, simple and accurate – do not create a false history, make sure all the information is correct.
  • The inscription should be approximately 19 words.
  • Where plaques are funded by specific bodies, the name may also be included in the design.

Applications will also be considered for larger scale memorials and additions to the roll of honour in the Town Hall Chamber.

The Council’s jurisdiction

  • The council will co-ordinate the scheme.
  • All proposals will be considered by the Heritage, Culture and Leisure Committee as advocates of the scheme.
  • The Council will fulfill its statutory duties as part of the scheme.
  • It will provide complimentary PR at the unveiling ceremony.
  • The council will promote the scheme via its website.

Organisations that can provide guidance and expertise

This English Heritage’s Blue Plaques Team have written extensive guidance to support existing and projected commemorative plaque projects and schemes across the country. You can read their guidance on their website.

The Open Plaques website, plots all commemorative plaques in Maidstone.


Download a nomination form

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