Events - 16 May 18

Date/Time Event
Wednesday, 16th May
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Municipal dreams, the rise and fall of council housing, with John Boughton

A narrative history of council housing—from slums to the Grenfell Tower

Municipal Dreams presents an alternative history of the United Kingdom. This history begins in the slum clearances of the late nineteenth century and the aspirations of those who would build anew. John Boughton looks at how and why the state’s duty to house its people decently became central to our politics.

Traversing the nation, Boughton offers an architectural tour of some of the best and most remarkable of our housing estates, as well as many accounted ordinary; he asks us to understand better their complex story and to rethink our prejudices. His accounts include extraordinary planners and architects who wished to elevate working men and women through design and the politicians, high and low, who shaped their work, the competing ideologies which have promoted state housing and condemned it, the economics which has always constrained our housing ideals, the crisis wrought by Right to Buy, and the evolving controversies around regeneration. He shows how the loss of the dream of good housing for all is a danger for the whole of society—as was seen in the fire in Grenfell Tower.

municipal dreamsJohn Boughton is involved in a number of housing campaigns. His blog is

This event in association with Nottingham and Derby Society of Architects and the 20th Century Society.

Tickets: £3, but free to students

To book a place, simply email us at

Venue: Nottingham Mechanics Institute, Nottingham
Wednesday, 16th May
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Nottingham Poetry Society reading, with Zayneb Allak and Rory Waterman

We are pleased to host this reading organised by Nottingham Poetry Society, part of the NPS relaunch events programme.

nwe-zayneb-allak-cover zayneballakphoto






Zayneb Allak has travelled and worked all over the world, and is currently Lecturer in Creative Writing at Edge Hill University. Keine Angst (New Walk Editions, 2017) is her debut pamphlet. She recently left Nottingham. While here she was well known on the local poetry scene.

Rory Waterman will be reading from his latest Carcanet poetry collection, Sarajevo Roses, together with older and new, unpublished material. Sarajevo Roses is Rory Waterman’s second collection of poems. From the start we are in the company of a poet on the move . On sleeper trains, in cars and on foot, Waterman takes us into Mediterranean Europe, to Venice, to Krujë, to the ghost-town Craco, and to St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, where ‘selfie-sticks dance before us at the altar’. Sarajevo’s ‘neatened muddle of terracotta and concrete’ is twinned with the ‘church spires and rain-bright roofs’ of the poet’s former hometown, Lincoln.

The Sarajevo rose of the book’s title  is a mortar crater filled with red resin, in remembrance.  Surrounded by the war-shaped, memorial landscapes of Europe, the poet is faced by those smaller wars and memorials one carries within, marks left by lovers, friends, relations, and past selves.

Tickets: £4, including refreshments

To book a place, simply email us at

Venue: Five Leaves Bookshop, Nottingham