Ian Nairn’s Pimlico walking tour - Saturday 17 August 2024 11am

Ian Nairn’s Pimlico walking tour - Saturday 17 August 2024 11am

Regular price £19.50
/
Tax included.

Ticket

Join Open City for a walking tour exploring Pimlico, one of central London’s most architecturally enigmatic and often overlooked districts

Pimlico, described by acclaimed architecture critic and former resident Ian Nairn as an ‘inner-city village’ in the 1970s, can often feel confusing, indistinct, and uncharted — a shadow sandwiched in between some of the world’s most famous postcodes.

Nairn himself affectionately called it ‘Westminster behind the Abbey’ in his influential 1966 guidebook, Nairn’s London. But for many of those who live there, it’s an oasis of calm at the centre of a bustling metropolis.

This engaging and accessible walking tour — led by Golden Key Academy graduate Joe Brookes —starts at Pimlico Station – and taking inspiration from the 1949 comedy Passport to Pimlico, which sees the district declare itself an independent state – we will discover this area’s unique character and ask whether the ‘village’ Nairn promoted as a model for communal living still exists.

From Thomas Cubitt’s avenues of stucco terraces to the utopian visions of Dolphin Square, Churchill Gardens and the Lillington Gardens Estate, this tour aims to shine a light on a number of architectural gems, offering an engaging journey through interlocking pockets of faded Georgian grandeur, interwar glamour and post-war futures.

Providing a fun way for enthusiastic urbanists to explore the city, we will question inherited notions of a ‘centre’ and the boundaries which constitute urban landscapes; examine the conditions necessary for community, particularly the interplay between public and private space; consider the impact of transport on the area’s development, including looking at how Pimlico’s mid-20th century road system foreshadowed the contemporary policy of low-traffic neighbourhoods; and compare Pimlico’s patchwork of community hubs with the commercial ‘placemaking’ of its southbank counterpart, Nine Elms.

Ultimately, we will consider whether Pimlico, and the concept of the urban village which Nairn's analysis seems to echo, is really an ideal for living, while attempting to grasp just why this area is considered a ‘non-place’ for so many.

Tickets are non-refundable and tours go ahead rain or shine.

* Please check for any planned transport engineering works, planned strike action or large scale events that may affect your journey before making your ticket purchase *

If you find you can no longer make the tour for any reason we are unable to transfer you to another date, but please feel free to pass your booked place onto a friend to go and enjoy the tour in your place. 

In the event your tour date is cancelled you will be issued with a credit note (with no expiry date) that you can use to 

- book onto a rescheduled date
- book onto any other tour from our programme 

or you can request a refund. 

All ticket purchases are in support of the work of our organisation including our pioneering education programmes. We really appreciate your support! 

Get in touch with Adrianna at tours@open-city.org.uk with any queries.

Please select solidarity pricing to help Open City offer the concessionary tickets rate for student and jobseekers.

Our concession pricing (£9.50 for walking tours / £19.50 for boat tours) is available for students and jobseekers only. 

 

If you find you can no longer make the tour for Covid or any reason we are unable to transfer you to another date, but please feel free to pass your booked place onto a friend to go in your place. 

In the event your tour date is cancelled due to Covid or any other reason you will be provided with the opportunity to book onto a rescheduled date, book onto another tour, provided with a credit note (with no expiry date) or you can request a refund. 

All ticket purchases are in support of the work of our organisation including our pioneering education programmes. We really appreciate your support! 

Get in touch with Adrianna at tours@open-city.org.uk with any queries.