A lot prettier than Geoff Mulgan
It should have served as a big warning that Bristol’s Urban Beach organisers, Demos, are often described as the think tank closest to New Labour. Their former boss Geoff Mulgan was even headhunted from the think tank to ponce about in charge of Blair’s hopeless No 10 Policy Unit, where he spent a good few years and a lot more cash constantly tinkering around with our public services to very little effect.
Well forget reconfiguring public services for the 21st century, this lot – out in the real world – can’t organise and open an over-sized sand-pit in a council car park in Redcliffe on time.
When the Urban Beach project was mysteriously handed to Redcliffe resident Melissa from Demos – a person with no project management experience whatsoever but a seemingly endless ability to waffle fluently in undergraduate cultural studies jargon – we were promised an urban beach from the 30 June through until September.
This starting date was abruptly changed with no explanation at the beginning of June to the 30 July. One week later it was changed again – with no explanation – to the 16 July. And with just days to go… What d’you know? It’s changed again – with no explanation! Now the Urban Beach is to open on the 21 July… They hope.
Anyway while we wait. Here’s some of Melissa’s jargon to think about:
the Beach is designed to test and develop new practices in terms of public participation in regeneration projects; and explore how cultural institutions can reach out and help people create their own cultural activities and value in the everyday spaces of where they live.
What a load of bollocks.