Winchester Master Plan Focus Group Report

Submitted by Council Chair on Wed, 05/08/2019 - 14:00

Master Plan focus groups in 2018 identified the following as some of the issues, challenges, and historic/cultural needs facing Winchester today (see also the full document):

  • Money - some groups better than others at raising funds
  • Lack of Public Awareness Around Historic/Cultural Issues - residents do not know/care about Winchester’s history. There is no connection to school curriculum about Winchester’s history.
  • Lack of Volunteers - Despite a high demand for volunteers across Winchester’s many organizations, it is difficult to recruit new volunteers due to the steep time committment.
  • Division between Families and Non-Families - Due to the high cost of housing, both parents in many Winchester families work to afford to live in town. Families are the easiest to contact due to their connection to the school system—but also the most difficult to recruit due to their busy schedules.
  • Quality of Historic Resources, particularly the Sanborn House, Wright Locke Farm, and Griffin Museum
  • Poor/Incomplete Records - many records were lost after the Town’s basement was flooded. Historic archives relies heavily on volunteer-time.
  • Lack of Stewardship for Historic Resources
  • Lack of Local Historic District
  • Lack of Cohesive Tourism Identity
  • Changing Demographics, Shifting Histories - as newcomers arrive in town, town’s history and culture must shift to welcome new diverse cultures.