Dr. Jeremy Harvey has been a trustee of the Planned Environment Therapy Trust since 1992, having been introduced to PETT through a circuitous route by the late Robert Laslett, David Wills' literary executor and a trustee himself since 1971 (part of the first generation of post-Founder trustees). Jeremy has been a long-serving member of the Management Committee of the Trust, regularly travelling up from his home in Somerset to meetings in Gloucestershire, London, and Oxford; and played a key role in the early formulation of PETT's application to the Heritage Lottery Fund for the "Therapeutic Living With Other People's Children" project, among other things. "Long live our creativity", he wrote for the PETT blog in 2013: "We could, if we so chose, grow our creativity and create a happier and more peaceful world in the process...Does any of this chime with you?" His creativity and unfailing sense of joy will be very much missed, as he stands down after more than 20 years; and is characterised by the fact that the arrival of his"Thankyou" to the Trust pre-empted the Trust's 'Thankyou' to him! Here is what he has written:
Thank you PETT
It has been an enjoyable and challenging experience, one that has taught me certain valuable lessons. I already had an interest in and respect for therapeutic communities and their work. Thanks to Maurice Bridgland’s book on educational pioneers in residential work I knew of David Wills and his achievements. I had learnt from George Lyward’s work at Finchden Manor that children and young people in need can amaze us if they have champions. As a trustee I soon saw that PETT was trying to champion an all-age field of real need. But speaking up for, collecting material about, providing research opportunities and the exchange of good practice in a not-well-known field is important, essential (for who else will do it?), and unglamorous work - and does not (yet) attract funding. Nor does it survive without hard work, dedication, determination, and a great deal of sacrifice on the part of those who keep the place and our organisation going.
I have learnt much, then, in these years and received far more than I have given. I owe a big THANK YOU for PETT’s setting and buildings; also for:
numerous lifts from Cheltenham station to PETT and back with especial thanks to John Cross; and the chance to spend time in London and Oxford before or after meetings;
PETT’s responsiveness to change and big challenges, and its survival in the face of difficulties which have included the indifference of successive governments to our kind of work;
the courage and determination of the chairs and trustees to keep PETT’s work ongoing and to care well for all concerned, and the professionalism shown;
the creativity and resilience that people have drawn on;
friendships made, the presence of good humour, insights gained, generous hospitality, and residential and social visits with family and friends;
the expansion of the archive and its breadth and richness; the chance to place my Lyward papers in it; the conferences and special events held; the success of ‘Other People’s Children’ and its affirming the experience and stories of others;
May PETT and all associated with it find strength, satisfaction and success in their dreams and endeavours.
21 July, 2014