Event will take place at Friends of the Landscape Library and Archive at the University of Reading (FOLAR) AGM

Study session at archive to focus on new towns

FOLAR will hold its AGM and study session on Saturday 19 March at MERL, University of Reading. The subject of the study session will be: ‘New Towns, Landscape and Gordon Patterson – Celebrating Mid-20th Century Design’. There will also be a small exhibition of related new town material selected from the LI’s archive and from other collections held at MERL, including the CPRE and Land Settlement archives.

The  FOLAR study session will shed light on various aspects of 20th century new town design and planning, and explore how ideas generated last century can help inform the designs of new settlements in the 21st.

The  speakers include Elain Harwood, Senior Architectural Advisor at Historic England, who is responsible for the post war research and listing programme. Her most recent book, ‘Space, Hope & Brutalism; English Architecture 1945-1975’, was published by Yale University Press in 2015.

Tom Turner begins the afternoon session with a talk and video on: Landscape planning for London and the New Towns in the 1940s; Oliver Rock of HTA Design will talk about the practice’s restoration of Stevenage Town Gardens, originally designed (1959-61) by Gordon Patterson. Oliver will also talk about the practice’s current work to restore Jellicoe’s Hemel Water Gardens.

FOLAR hopes that Gordon Patterson, for many years the landscape architect for Stevenage New Town, will be able to attend. Patterson’s archive is one of the latest additions to the Institute’s collections at MERL. Lastly, Caroline Gould, the University’s deputy archivist, will give a talk about New Town related material in the MERL archives.

Further details are here or email info@folar.uk. Tickets cost £10 for the afternoon study session. Bookings are limited so please book early.

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