Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain

Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain

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£64.20

Location

King's Cross

Euston Road

London

N1C 4AL

United Kingdom

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From New Town Blues to High Rise Utopias, experience Britain's Modernist Art, Brutalist Architecture, and post-war ambition

About this event

"They thrived on the rapid turnover of acquaintances, the lack of involvement with others, and the total self-sufficiency of lives which, needing nothing, were never disappointed"

JG Ballard, High-Rise

Join me in an exploratory walk at the vertical neighbourhoods of London’s East End and the Docklands, or discover the capital’s satellite New Towns. There, we will connect with the fascinating narrative of London’s urban transformation : from Victorian slum sprawls and wartime devastation, to post-war ambition and monumental Modernist rebirth. But we will also witness design failures, changing perceptions, and the betrayal of the powers that be : everything that brought about the decline of Britain's Welfare State, and with it, the demise of New Towns and Council Estates as a model for future communities.

The tour series revolves around 5 distinctive localities in and around Greater London : Thamesmead, Islington, Poplar, Stevenage, and Harlow. Each has its own distinctive character, history, and outlook - and each is also connected with the others through a strong undercurrent of Modernist principles and Welfare State mentality. We will see why and how plans were made, people believed, and townships thrived, failed and/or survived in the course of the past 70 years.

Naturally, we'll take a lot of photos, and on occasion, we'll meet up with locals for a chat. There's also the promise of a hearty local meal, which isn't included in the tour price.

Harlow was among the first wave of post-war New Towns. Boasting Britain's first pedestrian precinct, as well as the country's first residential high rise, the town is a living showcase of ambitious Modernist design, as well as its failures.. Today Harlow displays a most excellent collection of Modern art in its streets : a visual feast of over 100 statues, sculptures and monuments by important artists such as Henry Moore, Auguste Rodin, William Mitchell, and Barbara Hepworth. We will walk through Harlow, take in its public art and Modernist style, discuss its post-war history and witness both the successes and failures of its planning as the town moves into the 21st century. (tour lasts approx. 5 hours)

Meeting Point the suggested meeting point is at King's Cross / St. Pancras where a luxury SUV will be waiting for you. However pickup from another, more convenient point is also possible - please message me for details.

Please note the minimum number of tickets per booking is 2. The ticket includes transfers to and from Harlow in a luxury SUV with a licensed driver

Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain image
Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain image
Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain image
Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain image
Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain image
Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain image
Harlow : New Towns and High Rises - an urban history of Britain image

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