In his short story The Canterville Ghost, Oscar Wilde wrote: “We have really everything in common with America nowadays except, of course, language”.
That was written in 1887. Fast forward to 2023, and how much has this perception changed? And how much has remained true? London Society director Rob Fiehn and chair Leanne Tritton discussed the society’s new book London of the Future on the Firewall podcast, which discusses politics, technology and the pursuit of happiness. It’s hosted by Bradley Tusk, a New York-based political strategist and venture investor.
This episode was taped at P&T Knitwear at 180 Orchard Street in New York City and hosted by Hugo Lindgren, who described the London Society as a “Really cool civic group that’s been around for a hundred years.”
London and New York. The Big Smoke versus the Big Apple. How to compare these two behemoths? First of all, Hugo was envious of the book, and could imagine a New York version. He characterised the book as a paen to what the future of London could be and “a real examination from a citizen perspective.”
During the podcast, Hugo, Leanne and Rob discussed what London and New York share in common and how they are differed, going on to discuss how their futures may be linked.
Some of the changes considered during the podcast included what a person from the time of the first London of the Future, in 1921, would think about the capital now. They may well be pleasantly surprised and interested in the massive changes in the London landscape such as the rise of Canary Wharf. The financial district is now a familiar part of London’s skyline as is the Empire State building in New York City.