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Peter Murray

Bishopsgate Institute runs a learning programme for adults comprising courses, workshops, masterclasses and walking tours. These usually take place at lunchtime and in the evening on weekdays, and during the day at weekends. We offer a broad programme – ranging from Performing Arts and Body & Exercise courses to Languages courses – and students come to us to pursue a particular interest, to build their confidence in a particular discipline, to meet like-minded people, and for personal and professional development.

London’s past and present is a particular focus of our learning programme, based, as we are, at the point where the City of London meets the East End. Courses and walking tours often draw on this rich local history and take inspiration from the Institute’s Special Collections and Archives, which contain a wealth of documents, books, maps and ephemera relating to London and dating from the 17th century onwards.

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Peter Murray

 

Thresholds is a season of film screenings and installations in iconic architectural landmarks, dedicated to exploring space, identity and domesticity, from a feminist perspective.

Its first event will take place in the beautiful modernist residential estate, Pullman Court, on Sunday 23rd September, 10:00-17:00, as part of the Open House Weekend 2018. Free entry and open to all. The estate will host an installation of innovative female filmmakers’ short films, situated in the remarkable architecture of private homes and communal spaces throughout Pullman Court.

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Peter Murray

 

We’re very pleased to announce that the 2018 Sir Banister Fletcher Lecture will be given by Ben Derbyshire, the President of the Royal Institute of British Architects, and will be held in the wonderful surroundings of the Jarvis Hall at the RIBA offices in Great Portland Street on 5 November.

Tickets are available here – free to members of the London Society. Non-members can get ‘early bird’ tickets for just £10 until 30 September (or join the Society and get a free ticket!).

As a global city, London is subject to market pressures beyond domestic control.  So how do we build “A City for all Londoners” and sustain the quality of life in our capital? London now languishes at no 48 in the ranking of liveable cities worldwide and pressures will increase as the population keeps rising.

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Peter Murray

 

The 2018 Programme for Open House London for the weekend of 22-23 September has been published (you can see it here). And if you’re a supporter of the London Society and going to any of these events, we’d like to enlist your help.

Tens of thousand of people attend Open House, many of whom will be interested in the London Society’s work and our events – but they may never of heard of us.

We’d like to send you a couple of dozen Society leaflets to give to people you may meet in the queue, get into conversation with, go along to see a building with.

Just let us have your name and address (fill out the form here) and we’ll pop an envelope of our material across to you before 15th September.

If you’re a member of any civic societies, professional bodies or other interest groups and would like some London Society leaflets to hand out, please let us have your address and we’ll get a handful off to you.

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Peter Murray

 

We’re delighted to announce that Victoria Hewson of the Institute of Economic Affairs will be joining Daniel Moylan, Lord Adonis and Caroline Pidgeon in the London Society/On London Brexit debate on 13 September.

Victoria is a lawyer and practiced for 12 years in the fields of technology and financial services, before joining the Legatum Institute Special Trade Commission to focus on trade and regulatory policy and the IEA in Spring this year. She has published work on the implications and opportunities of Brexit in financial services and movement of goods and the issues in connection with the Irish border.

Tickets for the debate at the Conway Hall are available here.

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Peter Murray

 

London could contribute a million more homes to the goal of easing its ongoing housing crisis if it de-designated and used some of the scrappier, less ‘green and pleasant’ parts of its considerable Green Belt land.

That was one of the key views to emerge from an APPG meeting on whether it was time to re-think the Green Belt, held in Westminster 23 July.

london green belt

The session was introduced by APPG chair Rupa Huq and London Society chairman Peter Murray. The Society was responsible for originally introducing ideas around the Green Belt to prevent sprawl and provide a green lung for the city, but Peter Murray called it a ‘toxic’ issue which politicians nowadays ordinarily shy away from. Having a mature debate about such an important but often neglected issue, especially as the issue is controversial and emotive, was essential.

He then introduced Siobhain McDonagh (SM) to speak on the issue.

Siobhain McDonagh (SM) – The vast majority of issues raised at her surgeries are housing related, the 300,000-new home target per year has not been met since 1969 and London is gripped by a housing crisis which leaves families without adequate accommodation or in the grip of the private renting sector. We desperately need to build more homes to solve this crisis

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Peter Murray

 

September is a busy month with a series of fantastic talks, intriguing visits and an important debate. The Saturday Morning Planning School is back following the success of the Architecture School earlier this summer: knowledge of the complexities of London’s planning system is essential if one is to understand how this city is being shaped so this is a really important strand of the Society’s programme. The Behind the Scenes tours will take us into 30s town halls, one of the ‘Magnificent 7’ cemeteries, a school of architecture as well as the TUC’s Headquarters – a Modernist icon designed by the brilliant but unproductive David du Aberdeen. And we have an amazing line up for our Brexit debate: under the chairmanship of On London’s Dave Hill, Lord Adonis  and Caroline Pidgeon (Remain) and Daniel Moylan and a further speaker (Leave) go head-to-head on the outcome of the current negotiations and their effect on the capital. 

In the way that London’s history repeats itself Brexit reminds me of the Hanseatic League in London. It had been trading here since the 13th century, but their success riled the local merchants and in 1596 Queen Elizabeth I threw them out of the City. They had been based in the Steelyard (Stahlhof) on the river west of London Bridge, a walled compound which comprised warehouse, homes and a church, all destroyed in the Great Fire.  The League continued to own the site until 1852 when they sold it to the South Eastern Railway Company who built Cannon Street Station upon it. Only a plaque remains to remind us. Now wouldn’t make a good lecture!

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Peter Murray

 

The 2018 AGM of the Society was on Monday 16 July 2018 at 6.30pm at Allies & Morrison, 85 Southwark Street, London, SE1 0HX.

The draft MINUTES of the meeting can be downloaded here. The minutes will be formally approved at the 2019 AGM.

The 2017 ACCOUNTS (which were approved at the AGM) may be downloaded here.

 

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Peter Murray

 

We always need volunteers to write up event reports for the blog, so if you fancy coming along to one of our future talks, walks, debates or behind the scenes tours, you can sign up here.

Every few weeks we email the list of those of you who have put yourselves forward and ask which dates you are able to cover.

We generally choose two people for each event, and give +1 tickets for all talks, lectures and debates, and we also like to share the work around, so if you don’t get a spot in the current programme, we’ll try and make sure that you get one at another time.

Enter your details here and we’ll drop you a line with the latest events – including the Planning School, the London Brexit Debate, talks on Camden Market and street furniture, and tours of buildings and architects’ practices.

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Peter Murray

 

Conservation & Heritage: champions and challenges

A residential symposium in Liverpool’s historic centre

Liverpool has more listed buildings than any other city in the UK outside of London, and as such is a fitting location for Martin Randall Travel’s 2018 symposium; Conservation and Heritage.

Taking place over three days (7–9 November), this ambitious symposium brings together movers and shakers in the world of architectural conservation to examine the impact of tourism and new developments, as well as celebrating the skills and scholarship that make restoration and regeneration possible. Topics range from conservation in conflict zones in the Middle East, to Windsor Castle 25 Years after the Fire and championing the UK’s northern architectural heritage.

The symposium is held at Bluecoat, the oldest standing building in the city centre, together with an evening lecture and reception in the Grade 1-listed Town Hall. Among the twelve speakers are Sir Simon Jenkins, Sir Donald Insall, Dr Simon Thurley, Jane da Mosto, Marcus Binney, Henrietta Billings and John Darlington.

Prices from £580 pp (two sharing). Includes 2 nights hotel accommodation, breakfasts, refreshments and one dinner, admission to the talks, and some coach travel within Liverpool.

For further information, please click here or call 020 8742 3355

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