chapter  2
19 Pages

Royal Authority and Urban Formation: King Edward I and the Making of His “New Towns”

By“New Towns” Keith D. Lilley

This chapter uses some of the plans produced, particularly for the Midlands, to review how the future town was being conceived and re-shaped and the processes and actors engaged in this massive urban restructuring. It focuses, however, on the preparation, not on the implementation, of plans. These include the employment of consultants, the use of in-house municipal staff, the formation of specific committees of elected representatives, the involvement of the local press, and the contribution of third parties, whether local organizations or private individuals. This concentration of planning activity is demonstrated in, although it disregards consultants who worked on only one plan. This exploration of agents and agency sheds new light on a period of unparalleled activity in British planning, architecture, and urban design. More towns and cities were replanned in a shorter period than ever before, and this involved the widespread introduction of radical new concepts of architectural and urban form and a technocentric, scientific approach to planning.