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Trust and residents visit German town which inspired Hampstead Garden Suburb architect

Jane Blackburn,manager of Hampstead Garden Suburb Trust, is on the trip. Picture: Nigel Sutton. Jane Blackburn,manager of Hampstead Garden Suburb Trust, is on the trip. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014
6:00 PM

Hampstead Garden Suburb residents have marked the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War by visiting a German town which inspired the Suburb’s architecture.

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A party of residents set off on the trip, jointly organised by the Hampstead Garden Suburb Trust and the Suburb’s residents association, to Rothenburg in the German state of Bavaria yesterday.

Raymond Unwin, the principal architect of the Suburb, is known to have visited Rothenburg in the years immediately before the outbreak of the First World War.

Many of the features which he recorded in photographs of the town are visible in the design of homes and public buildings in the Suburb.

The trip includes a number of lectures from Rothenburg’s tourism, art history and conservation specialists, as well as a reception and dinner with the town’s mayor.

The visiting party will prepare an exhibition exploring what the Suburb owes to Rothenburg in July, as part of the Proms at St Jude’s festival.

David Davidson, the trust’s architectural advisor, said: “Visiting Rothenburg you immediately see elements of its architecture which are strangely familiar, the reason being that they influenced buildings we are familiar with in the Suburb.

“Dormers, steep tiled roofs, arcades, towers and the Great Wall are all elements which Unwin borrowed as a result of his summer visits.”

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