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Radical Spirit Driving Planners of UK New Towns Programme Revealed


New publication reveals first-hand accounts of creating the UK's New Towns.

Glasgow, United Kingdom, June 24, 2016 --(PR.com)-- Five major figures reflect candidly on the original New Town programmes, in a new report published by Idox. Drawing on original archive interview material, the report offers an intriguing insight into the challenges they faced in creating communities from scratch.

Idox, the leading provider of Planning, Building Control and related services in the UK, today launched the report "Planning the New Towns – In Their Own Words," edited by Morwen Johnson. The report makes publicly available, for the first time, five interviews carried out in the 1980s and 1990s with those directly involved. As they reflect on their experience we can hear pride, as well as a touch of bemusement at the scale of the programme that they were part of delivering.

The 33 New Towns developed since 1946 represent the most sustained programme of new town development undertaken anywhere in the world. Today, they are home to over three million people.

The New Towns Programme drew on the expertise and enthusiasm of a group of committed and visionary planners and architects. As well as being the driving force behind specific New Town schemes, many of these individuals became major figures in the development of late 20th century architecture and town planning in the UK.

The interview material features:

– Lord Campbell of Eskan – "I was really astonished how fortunate we were that we weren't lynched in the streets with the appalling upheaval that it meant."
– Walter Bor, CBE – "Cities must absorb change, live with it, rather than prohibit it."
– Professor Derek Walker – "I am optimistic that mediocrity is not an inherent British trait."
– Sir George Grenfell-Baines – "One of the aspects which makes the British New Town Movement unique is the public money that was actually put into it."
– Sir David Gosling – "The corporate spirit of the team was legendary and it was probably its interdisciplinary structure which assisted in its radical thinking."

This report celebrates the life-long commitment and vision which the planning profession brings to place-making. It also represents a historical narrative of the radical spirit that inspired those who built the New Towns.

Note to editors:
– Idox Knowledge Exchange is the research and intelligence arm of Idox, a major supplier of software and services to the public sector.
– Its products, which include the Idox Information Service and Scottish Planning and Environmental Law Journal, have been helping planning organisations across the UK public and private sectors for over forty years.
– This publication draws on interview material collected for the New Towns Record. This was a unique archive resource bringing together primary and secondary research materials on the UK New Towns programme. It was intended to be a reference work for anyone involved in research, practice and teaching in urban development. Created in the mid-90s, it included in-depth interviews with over 80 key practitioners and academics.
– Thirty-two New Towns were designated in the United Kingdom between 1946 and 1970 (plus the later abandoned Stonehouse).The programme was delivered in three phases of New Towns: 'Mark One', designated between 1946 and 1950; 'Mark Two', designated between 1961 and 1964; and 'Mark Three', designated between 1967 and 1970.
– Of these 32 New Towns, 21 were in England, two in Wales, five in Scotland and four in Northern Ireland.
– The report is available for download at www.theknowledgeexchange.co.uk/publications
Contact Information
Idox
Morwen Johnson
0870 333 7101
Contact
www.idoxgroup.com

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