Architectural historian Alec Clifton-Taylor OBE presents a potted history and architectural study of another six small English towns of great character. Following on from the popularity of Six English Towns and Six More English Towns, the respected writer continues his travel adventures in architecture, visiting a different location in each episode. In this series he visits Cirencester (Gloucestershire), Whitby (North Yorkshire), Bury St Edmunds (Suffolk), Devizes (Devon), Sandwich (Kent) and Durham (North East). But why these towns? Well, says Clifton-Taylor in his introduction, We wanted rather small towns. And we also wanted places that were visually attractive and part of the English tradition. These are not guide book programmes.
Our main concern will be with buildings and especially with houses. I d like every programme to be an exercise in looking. Looking at the changing styles and fashions and at the traditional building materials of England stone, brick, wood, plaster. Erudite, agreeable and accessible, Clifton-Taylor's passion for his subject is also displayed in forthright criticism for modern developments that threaten the identity of a community. A champion of pedestrianisation and despiser of multi-storey car parks, he makes a convincing case for the conservation of our traditional living and working spaces. First broadcast on the BBC Two in 1978, the programmes now serve as a fascinating historical snapshot of the enduring character of each locale.
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