Whatever Croydon will become, both the leadership of the council and Brick by Brick should feel embarrassed about the fact that while the borough's council-tax payers are quintessentially diverse, authorship of its built environment from hundreds of millions of pounds of everyone's' public funds is disbursed in appointments to people from a narrow set of backgrounds. This is effectively a regressive redistribution of wealth. London as a whole is 43.7% (self-selecting) BAME. There are 13 schools of architecture and spatial design within the M25 alone with at least some diverse intake. Perhaps Croydon/Brick-by-Brick should refer to the GLA's 'Supporting Diversity in the Built Environment' Handbook, (which they contributed to, emptily), and reflect on their own perceptions of what their architect and consultants look like? Hackney, Lambeth, Southwark, Islington, RBKC, Barking & Dagenham etc., this also means you.
It is not surprising though; yesterday was Stephen Lawrence Day, and this organ, didn't think it was notable enough to mention/or reflect on it in any meaningful way (if at all).
It is salutary to note that had Stephen Lawrence survived his ordeal, qualified as an architect, gained housing experience and set up in practice, he would statistically not have been appointed by Croydon (to design as much as a park bench) at anytime in the last 20 years (since freedom of information requests were available - and probably longer). Even sadder is that there is no attempt /plan to address or explain this for BAME communities, their freinds and supporters who are not minorities or their kids who aspire to be architects. Instead there are the usual warm 'woke' words about inclusion while the bottom line stays resolutely the same for years at a time.
Both the above comments are well meant (I think?) but both demonstrate architecture's inability to be plainly honest with itself... without equivocating. Architecture is horribly undiverse given it's ubiquity and effect over ALL our lives. It is a bastion of privilege which actively perpetuates itself while firmly excluding other groups, ostensibly because of some subjective idea of meritocracy (are the majority of new buildings really of such shiny quality?).
"we do encourage our architect teams to collaborate with smaller emerging practices where we think they have something special to offer"...
It could happen. It's been spoken about for years and hasn't happened yet though.
How has our profession lost it's collective memory...
It reminds me of being shown this in first year...
The Great British Housing Disaster (1984)