good afternoon my name is Ben Campion and I’d like to warmly welcome you to today’s UCL Minds lunch hour lecture to be given by Professor Ian Borden before we begin I’m just going to announce that the event is being live-streamed and also recorded on video and audio for podcast and for UCL’s YouTube channel and also there’s a hashtag on the banner here if you wanted to tweet about the event so before in presents I’m delighted to say a few words of introduction ian is professor of architecture and urban culture and his vice dean of education in the Bartlett which is UCL’s Faculty of the built environment he’s a historian and urban theorist whose academic practice is really distinctive I think in its being so wide-ranging and public facing interdisciplinary and really original in terms of the objects of IANS study and his working methods he’s published numerous scholarly works one of which interrogate the experiencial and representational aspects of cities and architecture so in 2001 he published skateboarding space in the city which is a really groundbreaking study of the history and culture of skateboarding and its relationship to urban space and also was the kernel of his more recent book skateboarding and the city a complete history so ins other monographs include Drive journeys through film cities and landscapes using film to explore how people experience the city through from the car and these and a really impressive body of really discipline airily paradigm-shifting anthologies have really been very influential within architecture and urban scholarly communities in the UK and internationally and also why beyond those communities in the public realm and in the skateboarding community – indeed I think it’s really notable that Ian’s own academic work has really been driven by his engagements outside of the University as a skateboarder for over 40 years such as the work that he does advising on skateboarding culture for in the design of skate parks for example so I’m very much looking forward to the lecture I think we’re in for a multimedia treat so please will you join me in welcoming in thanks Ben and thanks everyone for coming along in your lunch hour hope you hope this proves entertaining and illuminated ok first question who’s a skateboarder in this room ok right ok not so many ok that gut helps me dial in a little bit right ok who would like to be a skateboarder we will ask that question again at the end ok right lots of pictures quite a few video clips one I think is having its world premiere maybe in the public throat we’ll get to that skateboarding starts oh we’re gonna go on a journey we’re going to go from here in California in the late 50s early 1960s into the 1970s some pretty modernist urban spaces this is Milton Keynes there and we can end up in in Kabul in Afghanistan so we’re gonna go in the present day so we’re going through sort of 50 years and all over the world in 30 minutes so hold on right so skateboarding starts in California maybe also Florida maybe also New York somewhere around 1915 1950s when kids would ride on these things scooters and they were very primitive pair of rollerskates broken apart wheels onto a bit of wood have a crate of a fruit or wooden crate hold on to it and then at some point they decide that they could do without the holding on bit and they could they could skate you say this is nothing new you used to do it when you were a kid and you probably did no one knows exactly when the box came off and they took to riding just the plain old 2×4 with the old roller skate eventually this evolved into the modern skateboard what’s this some new kind of dance nope it’s America’s newest sport and

it’s called skateboarding [Applause] it’s pretty basic activity yeah bit of wood to bits of metal little bit of turning stuff some wheels and your balance on it and you steer and you go and that’s it and in a way the skateboard hasn’t changed a lot over the last 50 years it’s got more sophisticated in its materials but it hasn’t changed massively one thing that has changed has been not going like quick well one thing that has changed has been the wheels so the skateboards we just saw had very hard very small wheels and then somewhere in the 1970s of 1973 Keuchel Frank neighs worthy realized that you could make wheels out of polyurethane and this enables skateboarders to extend the city that they could ride on and in particular they found that they could emulate surfing so that’s why you’ve got these two pictures next what’s and what this guy at the bottom is doing he’s riding up on a schoolyard Bank one of the schools in encounter in one of the suburbs of LA and he’s pretending that he’s surfing and this is a sort of foundational moment in skateboarding where you take something that is not meant to be used for skateboarding schoolyard Bank and through the performance of skateboarding you change it and become something else Asch fault has become Wave through this through this act so we’re still in the 1970s and skateboarders found other terrains that they could skate in if they went out to the Arizona desert they could find these amazing concrete pipes that were being used for a water distribution project if they went into some of the backyards of Californian residences they would find many swimming pools many of these swimming pools if you drain water had curved sides between the walls and the floor and they found that they could ride up onto the vertical surface of the of the walls and they would scour around neighborhoods try and find pools that were already empty or maybe they’d work out the neighbors were away and they’d have a pump and they would they would pump the water out and skate these things illegally there’s a wonderful BBC documentary called skate bored Kings that was made by Horace over in 1977-78 you can find it on YouTube which follows some of these skaters doing this and then we get through a period so we’re now into the late seventies where the commercial sector realizes that there’s there’s something going on here there are millions of skaters in America and across the world and lots of these fantastic purpose-built skate parks created that you pay to get into and many of them they take the kind of terrain that skaters and found so these are all swimming pools but now design from the off for skateboarding’s about their simulations of swimming pools now made very large and very deep I’m very challenging to ride that the you know they’re some of them have sort of four or five meters deep and it’s quite a it’s quite a difficult thing to to ride and ride well many of these get built all over the world so top left one in lavet they let in Paris top right one in Tokyo bottom left New Zealand bottom right ROM skatepark which I’ll come back to a little later in London and actually this one is I think the oldest surviving skate park in the world in New Zealand it’s not in America it was first built in 1974

so those of these skate parks get built and they won’t have this kind of amazing riding I’d like to say I can do it but I can’t and it’s very performative in its very dramatic and it’s very challenging but and it creates a kind of space I use a lot of the work of the French philosopher Goodall he’ll affair when I talk about skateboarding one of the things on wheeler Ferb says about spaces is produced outward from the body and what the skateboarders are doing here is they’re producing a space through their own body through the skateboard and in relation to the terrain that they’re acting upon so in this formulation space is not a physical thing it’s a performed thing and it’s performed by bodies and a tool the skateboard and the architecture that the skateboarder relates against and these things come together in kind of a dynamic production and you could argue that it’s this is where I’ve got a blurred photograph on the screen it’s very difficult to represent maybe it’s ineffable it can’t be described in words and maybe the video captures some of it but some extent it also misses some of the part of the fact that this is a space which only exists as the skater is actually skating those escaped parts get built in the end of the 70s by the early 80s most of them are gone bust and they disappear so these are two of the UK skate parks about a hundred get built across the UK and nearly all the skate parks across the world get destroyed of the big skate parks that were built in the 1970s the ones with a really large investment only two still exist in the world today one in Florida and one in in Essex Hotel which I’ll come to but not all is lost what skateboarders realize is that actually you don’t really need a skate park what you’ve got out there if you choose to adapt your riding and do something differently is the whole city is a pleasure ground and through street skateboarding which really begins to take off in the mid-80s and really dominate skateboarding in the 1990s they realize that all you really need is a bit of flat ground and some ledges or some handrails or some steps or a slope or a fire hydrant that these are the objects that you can now perform you don’t need a great big grandiose skatepark this will do this is Milton Keynes and they use this move called the ollie skaters will know this it’s a move where you stamp on the back of the board and at the same time kind of jump up and it makes the board fly up into the air almost unaided is kind of magical some he’s quite good so when I first started work on skype when I was particularly interested in this aspect of it and in a way I wanted to see it as a kind of political act the idea that skateboarding enunciates a political and social critique of the world in which we live that was the kind of argument I used a lot of the work of army LaFave to do this so how does it do this well one of the most things it does it through performing it does it through the actual act of riding that it is the act of the skateboarder rather than the words that all the texts that say something and I call this performative critique so what does it what does this critique say well it says that first point I guess I’ve already made that you don’t need a skatepark that the whole city can be a pleasure ground that all architecture is interesting so a handrail which is designed for the purpose of safety is now the logic of this handrail is sort of turned on its head and now we’ve got it as an object of risk and danger and energy so this is gain if you think it’s the same thing that that skater was

doing on the bank pretending to be a surfer that it’s taking an architecture that was meant for one thing safety and now using it for something else which is risk danger delight energy expression there’s also I think what’s interesting about this is the fact that skaters used their whole human body people often talk about the world today that we’re expected to perform in a very passive way people talk about the malefic ation of urban space where everything becomes like a shopping map you know we’re supposed to walk quite slowly consume things just with our eyes and maybe with our wallet but we’re not supposed to run or or be loud or be subversive or do anything really that isn’t kind of walking and buying or maybe going to work but in particular what so one of the things skateboarder says it’s ok to use the whole human body so the act of skateboarding may be like cycling through the city or running through the city or a another kind of active way is also about listening it’s about smelling it’s about touching the architecture and when you ride a skateboard on cities you can feel the city come through your through your feet through the wheels through your feet up through your body that the texture of the pavement comes up into you and that’s a the fare of course it’s the reassertion of the human body other things that happen is that obviously skaters create new maps of the city of different ways of different locales and different ways of mapping it they critique architecture and in particular I think they critique the idea that architecture should be thought of as grand monuments by famous architects in recognizable style so Ben and I both teach in an architecture school in the Bartlett School of Architecture a lot of our students are architectural design students and quite rightly they’re focused on design but what practices like skateboarding also say is that if you if you use the city in a different way actually you don’t care who the designer is or who the building who the what the building is you don’t care if it’s designed by Tsar har Norman what you care about is is there a good rail outside that you can skate on so this is a this is a group of people who are absolutely passionate about architecture but don’t interested it in the way that we might be interested in it in in terms of who the architects are and the designers and so on there’s a critique in here of how we use our cities I talked about the magnification of space the idea that we we purchase rent and consume space often with our wallet or skateboarding is pretty much once you bought your board it’s not that expensive even a top-flight skateboard is 150 pounds cheap one is much less you go out into the city you can consume it without paying so this idea that that the city should be a pleasure ground and not just a work ground or not just to consume a ground one of the other things that people often talk about in public space is the idea of the to the city and on a fervent David Harvey and many other people have talked about this and on one level this is about the access to the city who has the right to be in a place who has the right to have access to a space and that’s important but there’s another kind of right to the city which is also important which is the right to become the person that you want to be and I think skateboarding is one of those practices that not only gives different people kind of access to city but it enables them to express and to develop and to create and to test the kind of person that they want to be so this person marita body is a non gender this is how they think of themselves a non gender-specific person who uses skateboarding and their interest in punk music to create their identity in relation to the city and they have moved to malmö in Sweden because this is a city which particularly welcomes those two activities of punk music and and skateboarding this also sometimes produces and creates a counter-reaction by city authorities so we often get these kinds of devices skate Stoppers this is the supposedly public space next to the GLA headquarters in London where if you try and skate well you you you can’t because there are skate stoppers there but the security guards will also come along and turf you out and this creates a kind of confrontation often between street skaters and city authorities so particularly during the

1990s and 90s at the height of street skateboarding you got this idea that skateboarding was a kind of opposition to mainstream culture and opposition to Authority stood against the city you know the rephrase that skate and destroy skate all be stupid and this was kind of the ideology of skateboarding dominant ideology in the ninth and it was very male so these are all teams of skateboarders 1988 2012 right up still persist to some extent today we’re skateboarding is often coded as male particularly through Street skateboarding so everything that I’ve said so far I wrote about in the first book that I’ve been mentioned in his introduction which you see on the left and so everything I’m going to say from now on is sort of what’s happened since 2001 and why I think skateboarding has moved on from that purely countercultural an oppositional position so these are all skateboarders in this picture there are graphic designers where are we so graphic design as a scaffold a mental health nurse someone who’s unemployed an accountant some preschool kids in a corporate lawyer that’s the corporate lawyer just there yeah he owns more money than probably all of us in this room together skateboarders are much more diverse so they can be of all different backgrounds they can be all they can be different ethnicity they can be young and female they can this is a guy called heir and fathering on location on a skateboard he’s in a WC MX wheelchair but you get my point they can be blind this is Dan man Cena who’s a blind skateboarder skating at an event that UCL did with the Smithsonian and inner skate at one of our campus sites in East London last May and they can skate even if they’ve not got any legs you you some to us a Jewish community absurd to me [Applause] so these are often called adaptive skateboarders so because a skateboard or a wheelchair is a mobility device it already has in it the possibility that people with physical challenges can reach out and express themselves in ways that perhaps they you know one wouldn’t have thought they would ordinarily been able to do and this is a really interesting part of skateboarding and WCM axis that’s kind of taking off a bit at the moment other things that happens skate parks have come back somewhere around 2000 2005 2010 particularly over the last five or ten years we’ve seen an explosion of skate parks around the world particularly as councils and charities have realized that this is a really good way to reach parts of society who maybe don’t want to play football or can’t commit to playing a team sport once a week it’s an activity which you can take up and use in your own your own time and skate parks are a really good way and actually quite cheap way it’s just a bit of concrete to to provide a leisure facility and improve physical and mental health for those people so we’re seeing a huge range of these and unlike the ones in the 1970s nearly all of these not all of them are free open access facilities you don’t pay to go in and just give you some examples of these this one’s in one I was involved in in southeast London affectionately known of blob lands it’s a converted paddling pool cost fifty thousand pounds to do it’s dirt cheap you know it’s a very small budget sometimes skaters will even build a small skate park themselves there’s a big DIY culture going on in skateboarding at the moment where you

might apropriate a bit of land somewhere work some concrete and build your own skatepark this is another one I was involved in so this is my local skate park if you want to come see me skate you have to come here on a Saturday or Sunday see me fall off and this is a sort of medium sized skate park and it has a pool and it has a bowl and a kind of simulated Street area this was its opening jam just over a year ago some of them are very beautiful this is next to a UNESCO 16th century fortress in Luxembourg and so has been designed with this rather beautiful concrete some of them are in rather extravagant this is under construction in Folkestone at the moment it’s the world’s first multi-story skatepark costing around 14 million pounds being funded by a by Roger to heart and the Jahan Charitable Trust so that will be open later this year some of them are five-star if you like Hard Rock Cafe and you want to go to a Hard Rock 5-star Hotel in Mexico and go skateboarding during the day and have sea bass and salsa in the evening you can it’s quite expensive if you want to do an artistic project then there are all kinds of artistic skate parks this is a glow-in-the-dark skate park in France they’re actually three of these one in Everton in Liverpool one in France which you see here and actually top right a temporary installation in Milan some skate parks don’t look like skate parks this is another scheme I was peripherally involved in in Milton Keynes so this is a skate park that wasn’t really announced as a skate park it was just a set of legends and benches that sort of simulated the urban realm and provided a place for people to skate without kind of saying this is a skate park where you should you should skate and this has been very influential as a prototype for how you might design skateboarder spaces for Street skating this is an installation by Raphael Sarkar French artist so this is a street in Paris which is part of which is given over to skateboarding Rue Cler del ins Brooks it’s land house Platz welcome skateboarding so you can you no skate stoppers here either it’s it’s amenable to skateboarding and BMX and eating your lunch and all the other things that people would do in an opening plaza this is a water Plaza in Rotterdam which is designed to be flooded at different times that you obviously wouldn’t skate there but maybe at other times of the year this guy is here you can skate it so these are all ideas about how you don’t necessarily have to build a skatepark you can build a skateable space a bit of the public realm which is accessible and welcoming and skateboarding rather than kicking it out and UCL is developing some new buildings over on the Olympic site in Stratford on the Queen Elizabeth Park and one of the things I and a few other people are trying to do is to make sure the spaces between those buildings will be kind of you know something like this that they will be open to skateboarding and welcoming to skateboarding and not exclusive of it escape one’s also being part of heritage debates so some of you will know this this was the undercroft area in London where the idea was to move the skaters out and put in retail opportunities 150,000 people signed the petition to stop this happening and in a way they were supporting the skateboarders but I think what they were really saying is we don’t want yet another sushi cappuccino opportunity that actually everybody wants to see sort of stuff like this and not just the shopping master and then this is the ROM skate park which I showed earlier so this is one of the two remaining full-size skate parks in the world from the 1970s and I think actually it’s probably the glaze claim to being the biggest and the best it’s the most original it’s hardly being changed we managed to get it grade 2 listed in 2014 and it’s an extraordinary place for its architecture and the people there and there’s a film which Harris Sattler has been directing for all producing for the last three years the film will be out later this year Matt yeah okay and so we’ve got the first I think public premiere of the final trailer for it coming up this place is a predator and a new order for a man as some days it will

let you get wove it other days it will chew you up and spit you out you’ve got to be scared of it if you’re coming you’re not scared of it you’re an idiot because you’re gonna go switch to the ankles dis okay please don’t let myself at it’s safe out there are certain type of people they are I was registered disabled for a while they told me probably never gonna walk without stick you do forget how to ride a bike let me tell you there’s less judgmental people at Sky Park than there is in the church I’d like to say always weirdos at first kind of describe is like the triple threat but still had this region Sadie there was this war will escape orders okay you have got non-hodgkins lymphoma and I thought you know got trial in again it’s special you know you go all over the world people know this place it’s just amazing this is old school it’s this is amazing place to be it’s quite intimidating you know no one knew how to make escape party they just started pouring concrete it was all experimental techniques what do you think about it I couldn’t walk past a look I mean I don’t like the card lit there after cut a little like her head it’s an incredibly valuable piece of architecture was going bankrupt was gonna shut me Saudis acid a moment there’s a business but they still keep it going no one really no one not one he’s giving back it’s been part of a inspiring journey to try and get this place full of life again we don’t get some help the place you don’t complete disrepair to be cornice its history die don’t you stop that man and something that these guys that wrote 40 years ago is keeping them writing means it’s right I hear rumors that it’s in trouble at the moment and this is one of the most iconic skate parks there is on the planet one boys does is it raises I think this idea that skateboarding is more valuable it’s valuable to skateboarders but it’s invaluable to kind of social lives into heritage into a sense of place and a sense of community and we’re beginning to see this side of skateboarding really develop and sometimes it’s in quite maybe predictable but fantastic ways so skateboarding will be in the 2020 Olympics it will be in the 2024 Olympics we’re already getting people like this person Skye Brown who’s an 11 year old female skater who’s going to probably almost certainly be skating for Britain and the Olympics she’s already getting huge publicity around her achievements and I think we’re going to see a lot more publicity around skateboarding and particularly female skateboarding as a result just a few other things to finish up on about how skateboarding is extending outside so million-dollar brands so vans here down at the bottom all these brands are associated with skateboarding some of them are very big some of them are small vans turns over over two billion dollars a year skateboarding is an entrepreneurial activity as well as a countercultural one there’s all kinds of as we’ve seen throughout this film photography graphic design creativity associated with skateboarding some amazing writing these are was my collection of skateboard books really amazing actually writing particularly on the web now on Instagram artists associated with skateboarding outsider artists street artists video artists I’d give a whole day’s talk just about the art associated with skateboarding but it’s also extending into social institutions so many schools now will offer skateboarding as an alternative PE I live off of opposite a primary school in Hearne Hill in South London and that primary school will take some of its kids out to the local park on boards they’ll do that as well as playing you know there are other sports and from there was even seeing whole schools which are you skateboarding as their central underpinning so the Far Academy in Kent does incredible work with kids who perhaps have not got on well with a traditional school bryggeriet which means the brewery in malmö in Sweden has a whole high school secondary school that’s kind of framed around skateboarding values and activities folks are very successful and this brings me to my last sort of example and point about skateboarding which it’s being used now as a kind of grab as a way to engage with youth who who perhaps

were difficult to engage with and sometimes in some very troubling and difficult circumstances so in refugee camps in Native American reservations in Johannesburg in Palestine skateboarding is not really the the destination but it’s the journey and I just want to give you one example of this to finish up on so the probably the best known of these skate charities is something called Skateistan in Kabul in Afghanistan’s been going for over ten years now and it uses skateboarding as a way to connect with youth and to bring education into their lives it’s quite a gendered project and I’ll just show you a short video that expect children make up 70% of the population of Afghanistan kids often only have you know roadsides that are filled with rubbish and cars and there’s no place for them in the society here so the result is they tend to grow up very quickly girls aren’t allowed to ride bicycles here they’re not allowed to climb over fences we had to teach the boys that know they couldn’t push the girls off the board and they had equal rights to be in that particular space to become a good skateboarder you just have to lose your fear and they don’t have any fear in the first place what skater stands about is the engaging kids through skateboarding and then giving them other skills if kids grow up with guns and that’s all that they know then they’re gonna use guns later on where they’re going to use violence to solve problems for us it’s more about breaking the cycle of violence we found skateboarding to be such a fantastic tool for communication we get kids from all sorts of ethnicities building relationships with each other so we’ve got Hazara kids skateboarding with target kids and we’ve also got girls skateboarding as well people in other countries can see that these kids don’t all want to strap explosives to themselves and they’re actually kids and I think skateboarding has given them a little bit of confidence we want them to be problem solvers to be part of the reconstruction of their country we want them to have a voice okay so we’ve can’t come the end to our journey we went we’ve gone from some suburban middle-class kids in Los Angeles and we’ve ended up in a pretty tough part of the world in Kabul and skateboarding’s being part of that thread in the conclusion to my book I talk about whether it’s a question really whether skateboarding is a magnificent life and by that I mean that it there’s something in it and I don’t think it’s unique I’m claiming unique things but as something about skateboarding that suggests it suggests a different way of living in cities it suggests that it’s okay to have people who are young and old in different body shapes and different attitudes and ethnicity in class backgrounds it suggests that we want our city to have spectacular architectures but also everyday places that we can be and dwell and things are equally important it suggests that we should use our whole body that we shouldn’t just consume with our eyes and our wallet and indeed that there’s all kinds of creativity that we can produce in our everyday lives and this doesn’t always mean creating my amazing paintings or artworks or music sometimes visit those things but a kind of creative practice as part of everything that we do and it’s a sister and it’s a world that it’s kind of equal if a world-class skateboarder rocks up at a skate park she or he will just ride that skate park as Annie cool with everybody else it’s a very flat kind of structure yes it does have its Superstars and it does have people and lots of money but it’s not kind of like rock music that way it’s very kind of flat and everyone has an equal right and everyone produces the culture together and I think increasingly in the last point is that skateboarding suggests that the it’s not also just what we do it’s the way it relates to other people and the way that we can encourage diversity and how we can work with people who are not as well off always as privileged as ourselves and skateboarding is a connecting device and it’s also an enabling device and somehow all of that is wrapped up in it so it’s no longer I think that’s where I think it’s moved away from this just sort of countercultural two fingers up at the rest of the world to become quite a

complex entity and I don’t think there’s any one kind of skateboarding anymore there were lots of skateboarding and lots of different skateboarders it become floral it’s become diverse and I think it engages with the city in all kinds of different ways thanks thank you so much it was a really wonderful eclectic and informative and entertaining journey that you’ve taken us on we do have some time for questions so perhaps while you’re formulating yours I will start with mine if that’s okay so please raise your hand if you have a question and please wait until the microphone gets to you as well because the events being accorded and I’d like to take you back to when you first decided to study skateboarding oh yeah and you know we live in an age where a skateboard park can be listed but I was just wondering what was the reaction in architectural history when you decided to start skidding studying skateboarding and also what was the reaction amongst the skateboarding community yeah well the reason I got into it was kind of accidental was because you know I’ve been a skater in the late 70s and I was a student at UCLA in Los Angeles and we’ve all asked to write I wasn’t doing a class on the history of Los Angeles and we were asked to write a term paper on something to do with the architecture of La that no one else in the room knew about and I thought what the hell do I know about la that no one else in this room how long skateboarding sobic it was almost a sort of so that’s that’s where it began yeah the reactions have been generally very very favorable sometimes librarians have said why do you want to order skate magazines and skateboard books or interlibrary loan and have kind of questioned that but 99% of your action I think as being very but from what my perspective has been very favorable and I think academia over the last twenty thirty as we know is moved in a much more interdiscipline in an open manner and there has been an interest in in you know all kinds of intersection so in my work is it architectural history yes is it film studies yes is it gender studies yes is it ethnography yes is it you know it’s kind of got a bit of everything in it so yeah but I think it’s quite a rich subject which help people engage me in different ways a very big field in terms and now and people would work a lot more academic when I started working in the 90s there are only two of us doing it myself and a sociologist called Becky Beale so my PhD is on skateboarding and there are two academic references in it and both of them are to Becky’s work thanks Becky great thank you anybody Holocaust no come on okay that’s one at the back happy Thursday we’ve met before skate Crystal Palace but not the planet I’m here well given some of the barriers skateboarders face and developing skateboarding what are your thoughts and idea of a public assembly or some democratic organization in the city to bring skateboarders together to help them overcome the challenges escape boarders face and developing skateboarding in the city yeah that’s an interesting idea I mean as we know that one of the interesting is about skateboards have resistance they’ve been to organization and and groups so I guess the closest we’ve got to that now is skateboard England which is a you know there is now a governing body for skateboarding which you know but it’s not I wouldn’t say it’s a democratic voice for skateboarding in general I guess long live South Bank did that in mobilizing or very effectively around the South Bank campaign so I think it’s probably around I think the long live South bomb is particularly interesting because it was mobilized a particular moment and a particular urgency I’m not sure if you would make if one could get a democratic representation of skateboarders as a you know other than through a kind of governing sport body it’s an interesting idea couple years ago even helped organize and called pushing borders which was an academic skateboarding conference and it brought people across the world to London to discuss skateboarding and given how successful it was i we can’t talk to you after regarding a london skateboarding confidence per se yeah yeah thank you everyone yeah so pushing borders i should say was organized by two of my PhD student science under Holsteins and Tom Callen with skate pal and with long live South Bank I helped raised a bit of money for it and when in its UCL and they had a second event in malmö last year they’ll probably be one somewhere else in a couple of years time this place okay there’s another customer from it’s a really interesting that you managed to get a skate park with great

to listing well done but what your thoughts on trying to get more urban spots sort of recognized I mean a lot of them are kind of disappearing now like Fairfield’s yeah half of South Bank when it’s not like it used to be when I was growing up and another sports like you know shell Center and things like that I think that’s I mean it would be great if that could happen I mean obviously the nature of is that it’s very difficult to list in a very everyday spot and South Bank it’s now got a section 106 agreement on it so yes it’s not the same as what we might remember it it’s gautam back in the day but it’s kind of preserved I’m in two minds you know there’s something about particular Street skateboarding it is about the transient it is about the ephemeral it is about adapting and the wonderfulness of those places is the skate was gone in and them rather mean just the architecture and in and of itself yeah but yes I mean there are too many of the places around the world that are Seminole skate spots that have that have disappeared yeah I guess Mac burr is you know they’re places that if they’re not preserved legally then they’ve been accepted and recognized as skateboarding places it would be nice to see that built more into city planning and to city concerns about recognizing that skateboarding is a important and valuable part of everyday urban activity that’s probably the way to go it I don’t think there’s going to be much joy going down that the formal listed heritage route I think we probably you know Rahm has been listed and that’s it in the UK I can’t see anywhere else being listed as well almost amount of Labor that goes in from voluntary organizations to do those processes and Thanks so we just probably have time for two more quick questions so there’s one of the work next and then thank you I just wanted to follow on from that point actually that the ROM is now all closed down unfortunately so I’m just wondering if there’s anything that could be actually done about how didn’t realize the significance of that skate park galvanized yes there is there is stuff that’s happening not how she sat there director Robert is probably the main person who’s really working hard on that I’m very very prettily involved with it myself but they were let’s just say there are things happening it’s not permanently closed we are hoping that it will there will be a resurgence later in and we can say something about it later in the year so just guess I’m just here on behalf of my 13 year old son okay yeah yeah yeah well that’s that’s great to hear that’s great to hear yeah thank you so there was one last question here please thank sorry thanks for that really interesting you’ve talked so brilliantly about kind of the evolution of skateboarding culture and architecture to now where do you sort of see it going in those few decades I don’t know where it will go well I’d like to see it go as more of those public spaces I’d like to see skateboarding much more integrated and welcomed within so I’d like more of those water plazas more of the Inspira more really hopeful that we do CL can help show the way on this a little bit with our work in we ramped up the projects that they’re going on in the Queen Elizabeth site so that I think is for me is the future there is a danger with skateboarding being the Olympics it’ll be get treated as a sport and everyone who doesn’t know about skating oh we need skilled training facilities we need to build you know sports gimnasio where they can learn their tricks in foam pits and in fact is yes but that isn’t the only bit of skateboarding and I think it’s really important that other spaces and multiple spaces of reduced as well so I think it’s sort of everyday spaces skate parks and advanced sports facilities it needs those three things to go at the same time so I’d like to and I think the last two are easy the most difficult one and but the one I hope to see more of is that multiple skateable urban space yeah maybe I it’s not the problem isn’t with architect it’s not there’s no problem with design there’s lots of ways of designing it most architects are very open very generous very imaginative and what the issue is with the planning and the government governance and the usage and that side of things that’s where the block is it’s not in the capacity to design this is the capacity to see the social health and benefits from those and I guess that’s where some of the work that little bit the work that I do but lots and lots of other people do even much more work than I do to try and make that awareness okay

Upton’s applicants if people waiting at the door so please will you join I’m thanking him for a really fantastic lecture [Applause]

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