PLANDEMONIUM 2 Just when you thought it was safe to start talking to the planners…

This is advance information about the talk that Rob Cowan will be giving to Stroud Civic Society  on2 8 January 2016 

A write-up following the talk is available on our Blog Page HERE.

(for details of our other events please visit:

Words here are from Tim Mars:

Last March Rob Cowan came to Stroud to give us his hilarious and illuminating PLANDEMONIUM talk. Now he’s back with a sequel that promises to be an equally entertaining and relentless exposé of the further foibles of the planning system, illustrated with many of his own cartoons.

Rob Cowan is the chronicler of planspeak and sustainababble. His bracingly therapeutic talk will set you right if you think that civic pride is the tasteless white bread served at local authority buffet lunches; that a cycle path is a dangerous lunatic; that genius loci means a really brilliant train driver; that ghetto is cake ordered in bad French; that the greenhouse effect is relationship breakdown due to excessive gardening; that a hypermarket is over-excited traders selling their wares in the town centre; that mass transit is a group of nuns on their way to church; or that terra cotta is an irrational fear of sleeping babies.

Over the years Rob has pondered some of the most profound and intractable mysteries, seeking answers to the really big questions:

  • What was so great about the Hanging Baskets of Babylon?
  • Do you need planning permission for a gastric bypass?
  • Should we strengthen the Green Belt with Green Braces or just let it out a couple of notches?
  • Where are the trolleybuses of yesteryear?
  • Is a Section 106 agreement the secular equivalent of the Sale of Indulgences that so incensed Martin Luther?
  • What have the planners ever done for us?

Rob Cowan is a serious man with a serious purpose—a man brave enough to poke the wasps’ nest of the planning system with a sharp stick and a ready wit.

He is an urbanist, writer and cartoonist, director of the consultancy Urban Design Skills, and editor of Context, the journal of the Institute of Historic Building Conservation.

His many publications include The Dictionary of Urbanism and a book of cartoons, Plandemonium. He also presents the Plandemonium series of videos.

Time and date:  7:30pm Thursday 28 January  Old Town Hall, The Shambles, Stroud, GL5 1AP
Admission: Members £2, Guests £3