For the love of London

I went to a book launch tonight in the Alex Eagle Studio in Lexington Street for a book about young London in which, slightly to my surprise, I am represented.   Leafing through the book and the people it represents, I grieve that it is precisely those aspects of London which are at risk from gradual loss through Brexit – the young, diverse, transient, creative population which will migrate or probably already find London less hospitable than it was.   There’s a faint irony that this was the London over which Boris presided and this is the London which, more than any other individual, Boris has destroyed.

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6 thoughts on “For the love of London

  1. Martin Hopkinson says:

    Only too true, Charles – and it is the cosmopolitan artistic, world of the under 50s which is so dependent on an equal playing field with artistic communities in other EEC countries which will be among the worst to be hit. Already British based artists have had significant continental projects and exhibitions cancelled through the withdrawal of promised funding abroad

  2. Joan says:

    Slightly off topic but touching on gentrification, last night we went to see the play Limehouse at the Donmar Warehouse. This charts, in entertaining fashion, the putting together of the SDP’s Limehouse Declaration in Debbie and David Owen’s home in January 1981. I remember being very aware of these events as a 17 yr old Labour Party supporter in neighbouring Stepney. The play is really good on reminding us of the glamour around the young Owen family (I remember the publicity around the young foreign secretary sending his kids to a state nursery in, I think, Old Church Road) and by association that other early gentrifier Delia Smith (it was a jolt to go to mass in Wapping and find her sitting in the pew behind). There are jokes about the dinner guests getting lost going so far East. Well worth seeing if you get the chance – Roger Allam’s portrayal of Roy Jenkins makes it worth the price of admission alone.

  3. Joan says:

    I’ll enjoy listening to that. The other people I remember from my childhood who were also regarded (by my family and no doubt others) as slightly insane for wanting to live in the East End, were Jenny and Michael Barraclough. Their legacy is, of course, some very nice buildings.

  4. Joan says:

    More good listening to look forward to. Despite my annoying (especially to myself) ability to divide everyone into left footers or not I don’t know of his religious affiliation. Given his record in community involvement I’d be really happy to claim him though. Goodness knows, given its current travails, the faith of my birth needs all the good guys it can get!

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