I got an email the other day about Matthews Yard. A really lovely and somewhat quirky space in the older part of Croydon. It’s being threatened by a developer who wants to turn the site into luxury apartments. Of course we really need more luxury apartments to keep on gentrifying more and more of London. Yeah, right!
So I’ve added my voice to keeping Matthews Yard going. Croydon needs more spaces like this and not a load more luxury apartments to push out local people. If you want to do the same then sign the petition here. If you want to know more about what Matthews Yard has done since 2012 when it launched, check this out.
On Wednesday I was lucky enough to get a ticket to a completely unique event at the building site that was BBC Television Centre. Resonance FM were running an evening of live broadcast from the east tower, which is due to be demolished in a month or so.
I found it to intriguing to not grab a ticket and go along. But I didn’t exactly know what to expect. At best I’d say that I’m an occasional listener to Resonance. I enjoy it when I do listen, but I couldn’t give you a clear idea of what their schedules look like. So it was a real adventure from every perspective.
Getting there was quite easy although the entrance wasn’t entirely obvious even though Resonance had given excellent directions. Once in we had to walk through the site and up in a very slow lift to the 9th floor.
The broadcast began at 6:30 with “The World in London”, which was extremely enjoyable and I learnt a lot about the Notting Hill Carnival. It featured live music by veteran Calypsonian Alexander D Great and steel pan virtuoso Debra Romain. Following that was a live performances by Howlround: a new musique concrète commission of Robin The Fog, using sounds recorded exclusively in TV Centre. Then Encounter with John Escolme, exploring the modernist design of TV Centre with contributions from architect Arthur Hayes and tv producer Emma Cashmore. Then the Resonance Radio Orchestra with Dudley Sutton, presenting a site-specific radiophonic extravaganza featuring the cult TV actor, and that was completely amazing.
I hadn’t really appreciated just how much of an emotional resonance the site would have for me before I got there, but the experience was actually very profound, very moving for a lot of reasons that I haven’t entirely thought through as yet, but I will.
Anyway, I wanted to share the pictures and a few thoughts too. It was a special evening.
One of the attractions of Vancouver is the Gastown clock. It’s a gas clock that pipes out the time on the half and full hour. It’s quite the tourist trap. It makes a nice sound too. I took a couple of audio recordings of it and I’ll upload them in the next few days.
I didn’t even know about this lock, but stumbled on to it after visiting Wisley for the day. It was a very nice little lock and right near a pub too. I think when I’ve got a bit more time I might go back.