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The latest contribution to the Town & Country Planning Tomorrow Series is not a new paper, but the re-publication of Norman Macfayden’s Health and Garden Cities, the first of a ‘New Series’ of pamphlets published by the TCPA (at the time, operating under the name Garden Cities and Town Planning Association), issued in 1940.
Over 70 years on, the pamphlet is still of critical relevance today as the Government embarks on both a reform of public health and a new generation of Garden Cities and Suburbs. It highlights how Garden City planning made a significant contribution to improving the quality of life of ordinary people, providing an unparalleled improvement on what had come before. The Garden City pioneers understood that planning was not just focused on bricks and mortar; it was about creating the conditions for people to live differently, addressing social isolation and founded on a co-operative ethos.
We know that improved planning and better housing provision have long been understood as pre-conditions for enhancing the health of individuals and the communities in which they live. It is time we put the public health agenda back at the heart of planning; and the creation of new Garden Cities and Suburbs provides the perfect opportunity to do this.