callmemadam (callmemadam) wrote,

TV watch: The Festival of Britain

Yesterday evening I watched a programme on BBC4 about the Festival of Britain and the Brave New World it might have represented. Some of the people responsible for designing and building the exhibition are still alive and were interviewed (they were very idealistic), as well as people who’d just been along and enjoyed themselves. I’ve written before about my own experience of the leftovers from the Festival. Unfortunately, by the time I was old enough to appreciate it, say about seven, the exhibition, with its history of British technological innovation, its futuristic homes and general atomic new age theme, was gone. This is because as soon as the Attlee government fell, the new Conservative government under Winston Churchill (who was ill and not fit to be Prime Minister), had destroyed the whole thing *out of sheer spite*. So, I never got to see the wonders of the exhibition and marvel at the beautiful Skylon. It was an unpopular decision. In a piece of film I’d never seen before, the Lord Mayor of London declared the exhibition closed, to loud boos. At the end of the programme I felt really angry. I mean, fancy spending money on something to amuse and educate ordinary people!
Tags: festival of britain, television

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