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Peter Murray

 

Whether you’re a confirmed Brexiteer or a devout Remainer, you’ll agree that probably the most significant event to affect London in a generation is Brexit. That’s why the London Society – working with the OnLondon website – is holding a debate on the topic on 13 September.

Book tickets now at the ‘early bird’ rate – just £5 for members of the Society and £10 for non-members.

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Peter Murray

 

We’re very pleased to announce the London Society Saturday Architecture School for 2018, looking at the buildings and the architecture of the 20th and 21st centuries.

Book for the whole series of five talks and you will save 20%. What’s more, if you’re not currently a member of the Society, if you book the series you will also be given 12 months membership of the London Society, giving you priority booking and members’ discounts off all Society events for the next year.

The 2018 series, held in association with the Cass Architecture school and running on each Saturday morning in June, will show how London’s architecture has evolved over the last 100 years or so, exploring the architecture of London from the halcyon years before the First World War, through a period of long reinvention to the present day when again the city is building and reasserting itself with a confidence of a very different nature. The five lecturers  are all practising architects and will present salient facts as designers rather than historians. There will be ample time for discussion and questions afterwards.

Full information on the individual classes and booking details can be found here.

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Peter Murray

 

We’re very pleased to be able to add a couple of extra speakers to the Planning for the Unknown: London in 2050 panel discussion that the London Society is running in association with CityMetric next week.

  •  Jeremy Skinner, Senior Manager of Growth and Enterprise at the GLA, who led the team that produced the London Infrastructure Plan to 2050
  • Neil Bennett, lead partner at Farrells architect/planning practice for strategic infrastructure and urban design projects
  • Rose Grayston, policy manager at the housing charity Shelter
  • Nicole Badstuber, a doctoral researcher in urban transport governance and policy at UCL and Knowledge Exchange Coordinator at the UCL Transport Institute.

The discussion will be chaired by Jonn Elledge of CityMetric. If you want to know how London might evolve in the next three decades, or if you have opinions you’d like to share, come along to what will be a fascinating debate on our possible futures.

There are some tickets still available here.

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Peter Murray

Mon 9 Apr 2018, 6.30–8pm
Cass Research Seminars:
Lynch and Luxemburg on Dwelling and Beauty

In this twelfth Cass Research Seminar artist Rut Blees Luxemburg and architect Patrick Lynch will consider the problems of dwelling, aesthetic value and city participation. Through art and architecture practice, they will take us on a visual journey through London to explore an alternative view of urban beauty, perception and possibility, discussing their own works and collaborations, in two short presentations followed by a discussion, on the topics of beauty, civic life and dwelling.

You can find full details and book for the event here.

The Cass Research Seminar is a forum for exploring cross-disciplinary, phenomenological, academic and real-life experiences and ideas. Two presentations will be followed by a lively panel discussion between the audience, a professional discussant and the two speakers.

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Peter Murray

The last in the Planning School series of lectures – The Future of Planning – was held on 18 November at the Building Centre in Store Street with Zoe Green – Strategic Urban Planner at PriceWaterhouseCooper. Jo East was present.

Zoe Green advises cities across the globe on how to prepare for “4IR” – The Fourth Industrial Revolution that many believe we are entering right now. Promising to tackle broad themes, Zoe did just that taking in all the new technologies from synthetic biology, through 3D printing to the “Internet of things” (machines communicating directly with each other) unpacking these buzzwords as she went. The good news is that by looking at various indicators her recent report believes that London is 59% ready in preparedness to implement these technologies – Only Singapore scores higher although this drops to 42% on a Matrix of Social Readiness.

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Peter Murray

 

New for 2018 is “How We Work” a series of informal evenings that will take members* into various of the capital’s exciting architectural, engineering and design studios. The evening will look at each studio’s past, present and future and one of the principals will share the practice’s vision, and outline their most significant projects.

During the year we hope to visit Allies + Morrison, Alan Baxter, Lifschutz Davison Sandilands and Make (details to be announced shortly), and the first of the events will be with Studio Egret West on 26 February. You can find out more about this and book tickets here.

How We Work” is for London Society members only, so if you would like to come along you will need to join or renew your membership. You can join the Society here – Professional Members can get two tickets for their company, Corporate Supporters can request up to five free tickets for each event.

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Peter Murray

 

Members are the lifeblood of the London Society, helping fund our events, publications and the work we do with the All-Party Parliamentary Group.

More than that, the engaged membership that we have gets involved in the talks and debates we hold, comes on the tours and walks, and contributes to the discussion on the sort of capital city that we want.

If you’re interested in making London a better place in which to live and to work, want to know more about the city’s history and development, enjoy seeing ‘behind the scenes’ at famous buildings and architects’ practices, then you really need to become a member.

And this is the best time at which to join. In the New Year, membership rates increase, so if you join now, you can save up to £10 off.

The spring 2018 events programme is taking shape (you can download the current list here) with booking open to members for several events.

Many of our events sold out in 2017, so if you want to make sure that you don’t miss a talk or tour that you’re really interested in, then becoming a member gives you priority booking as well as discounted tickets.

We have nearly 1,000 individual members now and hope to get this to 1,500 next year. Join today and you’ll be part of a growing society that is educating, informing and entertaining its members. Click here for more information.

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Peter Murray

 

We mentioned the new film London Symphony in an earlier blog post, and I’m delighted to say that The London Society has secured some tickets for a screening of the film to be held at Southwark Cathedral on 23 February. After the film there will be a Q+A with the director. More details here.

London Symphony is a modern day ‘city symphony’, shot in black and white at over 300 locations around the capital and with an original soundtrack by the Convent Garden Sinfonia, it shows glimpses of the vibrance and diversity of the capital.

The screening will take place in the beautiful candlelit Cathedral nave and will be followed by a Q&A with the Sub Dean & Canon Pastor Michael Rawson and the Director, Alex Barrett.

The film was nominated for the Michael Powell Award for Best British Film at the Edinburgh International Film Festival 2017.

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Peter Murray

Want to distinguish your Garden City from your City Garden? Want to learn how we went from Green Belt to Green Growth? The London Society’s Saturday Morning City Planning School is for you! Following on from this spring’s immensely successful Architecture School, this new series of talks seeks to provide an overview of how and why our cities have grown in the way they have, with a focus on London.

To find out more and to book for the whole series click here. To book individual talks, go to the events page.

We’ll explore the history of London’s development over the past 2000 years and its urban revival in the past quarter of a century. We’ll explain how decisions are made and how the idea of “affordable” housing, which dominates the media, has emerged over two centuries of debate to the viability-driven decision-making of today. Leading the course will be an expert line-up of speakers, from academia and practice, sharing their experience with an overview of how our city (and cities) have been managed over time and what the future holds.

Details of the five classes, which will be held in the Building Centre in Store Street, WC1 (in association with the Building Environment Trust), can be found here here. If you book the whole series of five, you’ll pay for just four, and non-members who book the whole series will receive a free 12-month membership of the Society.

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Peter Murray

 

The Institute of Historical Research with the Centre for Metropolitan history are running a project called Stray Voices which aims to stimulate insights into the buried stories of homeless men and women whose voices remain silent or unheeded within the historical record.

Can exploring the images and realities of vagrancy sharpen our understanding of ‘settled’ communities, which have otherwise been articulated from a sedentary perspective?

Involving specialists in the history of vagrancy, creative practitioners, community activists, members of the public and those who have experience of homelessness, the project will look at how history has shaped our preconceptions relating to those with ‘no fixed abode’.

As part of the project there will be series of participative events – including a two-day conference, a research-guided walk, and a forum theatre workshop – details of which can be found here.

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