Forum sees Thames Gateway future

The Thames Gateway Forum was a big success this year, buzzing with developers and planners who displayed ambitious proposals for the area.

Clearly excited by all the commotion was one forum official who had agreed to give an interview to a broadcast journalist before communities secretary Ruth Kelly's opening speech. He announced how delighted he was to welcome everybody to the Thames Gateshead. The exasperated journalist was heard shouting: "No, no, no. Cut. It is Thames Gateway. Take two." It was only after the third take that the bigwig finally realised he was trying to endorse a non-existent locale. Thankfully Diary went on to discover that this worrying but very entertaining scene had been staged by the Natural Theatre Company of Bath. The Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment brought the actors in to make the point that the identity of a place is as dependent on what people do there as where it is.

The blithering official was in fact a mocked-up mayor for the Thames Gateway who had lived through all the changes the region is set to experience between now and 2020 and was keen to encourage investment in the area.

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