• Anu van Warmelo

How to Get It Wrong!


Town councils err so consistently with town planning, I could fill pages with examples. It may seem unfair therefore to single out Hereford, as I do here, but this is one of the funniest mistakes I've seen, therefore irresistible

The bench has been placed as if just plonked down without regard to its surroundings. Behind it, and behind the camera, is a busy road, meaning that the support one requires from the Black Tortoise direction is nil. The Red Phoenix in front is staring at a narrowing pincer-like vista rather than an open, soaring, inspiring space. The bench is also 'floating', that is without any objects anchoring it .

I often think every council should have an Imagineer on their staff, someone who has a good background in architecture, design and aesthetics. Feng Shui and related disciplines could be a part of that. So what might they recommend in this case? Perhaps putting the bench against the wall for support, facing towards the shrubs and setting sun, would be a start. Next to the bench could be a bin to help anchor it, with an ashtray for those inclined to use it. These and other solutions are often available, are simple and cost-effective. All they require is a bit of open-mindedness, and imagination. An Imagineer could provide all this, thus enhancing people's lives immeasurably, and very possibly saving money in health care and the like.