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How To Design A Town Square: One Year On

Hosted by RTPI Dorset Young Planners
01 July 2021 at 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM / National / South West England / Online

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01 July 2021 at 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
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RTPI South West | [email protected]

Last year, the Dorset Young Planners introduced you to a public realm project being undertaken in Dorchester by the Bournemouth-based design studio Feria Urbanism. One year, and several lockdowns later, we are meeting the team again to find out how their design for the town square in Dorchester is developing.

A town square is a piece of architecture that supports the life of a town. If roads and streets are its arteries, then squares and plazas are at the heart of the town. The Cornhill (or town pump) area is arguably Dorchester's equivalent to a town square. It has often been a central meeting point for markets, festivals, and parades. But over recent years Cornhill has become a lesser version of what it once was and appears cluttered and rather neglected. This project aims to restore Cornhill as the primary public space in the town.


Feria Urbanism is a dynamic, award-winning design studio. We deliver local change by making community aspiration the foundation of our activity. This is enabling and gives people a voice in the design of playful, multifaceted places that enhance local ecologies and community life. We use a range of digital and real life tactics to engage local knowledge, hopes, and collective dreaming.

Richard Eastham is the founding director at Feria Urbanism. He is an urban designer and urban planner with extensive experience in the preparation of design strategies and development frameworks. He has particular expertise in engaging with local communities to help shape and influence emerging spatial strategies. He is a visiting tutor on the architecture course at Arts University Bournemouth and a teaching fellow at the University of Southampton.

Jennie Savage is the creative director at Feria Urbanism. She is a public artist, teacher, and communicator, and has been working across the UK and internationally for over twenty years. Her extensive experience of developing public art, both through community engagement projects and permanent sculptures, has given her significant insight into urban developments and how communities think.