A unique collection of documents from a significant activist movement that challenged the established order of architectural practice both in the private and public sectors goes online in November. In the mid-1970s the New Architecture Movement (NAM) gave a voice to progressive and inclusive initiatives that encouraged people to promote social change and greater equality through their work in the built environment.
The launch of NAM’s archive provides both a new resource for historical research and also a challenge to present and future generations in the field to reinterpret and apply NAM’s radical ideas to current issues. NAM brought together young idealistic architects, engineers and planners from across the UK seeking ways to reform working practices and the planning and development process. In an intensely productive period from 1975-80 the movement ran workshops, campaigns and seminars on a range of issues – professional education and governance, workplace structures, feminism, public sector design, worker unionisation – to create an alternative vision that put the priorities of people and communities ahead of developers,corporations and officials.