Shopping Cart

Your cart is empty!


  The debate with the London Historians on the topic of Architectural Marmite will be a lively one, with strongly held preferences voiced with passionate rhetoric. It will be fun but also raise serious issues that engage with our other key topic of the current programme - the draft London Plan. In order to cater for the expected population of 10 million by 2030 London is going to have to build a massive 66,000 new homes a year - impacting on many people’s back yards. The Plan calls for high quality design, but many Londoners will wonder quite what that means. Sarah Weir Director of the Design Council says that “Good design is about more than aesthetics. It is about delivering for its users, and for everyone affected by it.”

But a lot of people do think that architecture is about aesthetics - what buildings look like is important to them. According to Create Streets, it is the look of buildings and their scale that is a key driver of nimbyism - they think communities would prefer traditional looking developments. London YIMBY (Yes’ In My Backyard) suggests that individual streets should vote on giving themselves permitted development rights, to build upwards to a maximum of six storeys and take up more of their plots. Yet others believe London should be creating places that reflect life in the 21st century rather than the 18th. How do we create a positive debate about the neighbourhoods of the future? As the Mayor seeks to deliver higher densities in areas of outer London he will have to seek some consensus among local communities impacted by new developments. The Marmite debate will be a microcosm of the issues he faces in generating that consensus