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Against the Olympic 'Regeneration Culture' in London

In a new book, author Iain Sinclair argues against the Olympic redevelopment of London's East End, and argues that the legacy goals its planners are pushing largely already exist.
July 9, 2011, 7am PDT | Nate Berg
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Sinclair refers to the communities that exist in the area, which are being pushed out by the massive regeneration efforts underway to prepare for next summer's event.

"Certainly Sinclair has responded with all guns blazing: his new book, Ghost Milk, is an elegiac assault on the Olympics and the regeneration culture it has spawned – or ‘Dr Frankenstein with a Google Earth programme and a laser scalpel', as he calls those he blames for carving up his beloved borough. It seethes with anger at the impact of the Olympics' computer-generated aesthetic on a previously rough and ready part of London and, crucially, on the people who live there.

‘Everywhere there's an erosion of locality,' he says as we walk towards the vast, churning building site circumscribed by the now infamous blue fence.

‘Everywhere communities – allotment growers, houseboat communities, small businesses – are being wiped out by this global conglomerate obsession with putting up huge blocks.'

Sinclair was never going to take kindly to the Olympic development that has bulldozed through Hackney Wick and parts of Stratford where, in the 1970s, he used to work at Chobham Farm."

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Published on Friday, July 8, 2011 in Metro
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