You can tell a lot about a society and its politics by its architecture: conservative and re-assuring, or brutal and ‘new’. But where would a future historian look for the defining architecture of today and what would they find? Ambiguity? Lack of conviction? A growing feeling that both architecture and politics have grown irrelevant? If they looked harder, might they find architecture, of a different sort, that promises – for the first time in our history – the potential to build structures that will support genuine democracy at last?
What links a taxi driver in Birmingham with an investment banker in New York? Or, for that matter, a farmer in Mirpur, Pakistan, with a care assistant in Hackney and a retired bus conductor in Barbados? The answer might be ‘six degrees of separation’. That is, the idea that no more than six personal connections [...]
Chamberlain Forum meeting looking at the future of localism and devolution with Cllr John Cotton and others at Stanhope Hall, Highgate B12 0XG
Reforms in health and social care services are needed to enable: decision making to take place at the best level – too much is too centralised and based on data extracted from an area, rather than real information about life in it public services to support and enable self-help – not enough emphasis is put [...]
Some see it as a classroom or a refuge; to others it’s the gym or a hospital… or their church. People tell Birmingham park-keeper Fred Tematema that their local park serves a multitude of purposes. Their use and role make parks and open spaces places where ‘Big Society’ is put to the test.
picture: Carl Baker I suppose the fact that Curzon Street Station is still there is the real surprise. The grade I listed building opened in 1838 and provided Birmingham’s rail links to Liverpool and London: linking the world’s first industrial town to the two greatest ports. Unlike many landmarks of that era, Curzon Street is [...]