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Guest Blog: Building Consensus in Oxford on Leap Day!

Posted on 5 March 2012

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By Stephen Smith

The Glass-House marked Leap Day with a workshop at Cutteslowe Community Centre in Oxford. Chief Executive Sophia de Sousa was joined by Glass-House Enabler Stephen Smith of Wright & Wright Architects and research partners from the Open University.

Located at a seemingly commonplace residential edge; several complex contextual emerged – the sense of a gateway building to a Primary School and Children’s Centre; an expanse of parkland both adjacent to it and beyond the bypass footbridge to allotments; and the proximity of the site of some nationally significant cartographic scars – the spike-topped Cutteslowe Walls – that previously divided streets between Council Houses and Private Ownership.

The group were engaged in a series of activities to begin to evolve a project vision for the transformation of the Centre. Discussion was animated and thoughts were articulated about creating a warmer and welcoming threshold, cross generational activity and planning and an understanding about further outreach and engagement.