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

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

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£64.20

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.

Thamesmead is a riverside community of 60.000 inhabitants. A backdrop for iconic films such as Clockwork Orange, Beautiful Thing and TV series Misfits, the iconic Brutalist estate is undergoing rapid transformation. We will traverse the humongous area, comprising high & low density blocks but also a beautiful natural reserve. And we will discuss the unbridled ambition, misguided planning, and nearly catastrophic failure of a model council estate that was once termed "The City of the Future". Alongside fascinating Brutalist visuals, we will witness life going on, and new hope emerging as Thamesmead continues to transform into the 21st century. (Approx 3 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 Thamesmead by luxury SUV with a licensed driver

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

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