In Praise Of… Forbury Square

This is one post that most definitely has nothing to do with cycling . Apologies. It has everything to do with, err… an office building. Reading, the town where I have lived since late 1999 (and which I will soon be leaving to return to Yorkshire albeit via Spain and a third long cycle to northern Norway), has its fair share of glass and steel office blocks; as the economy once again picks up, many more such buildings are springing up in the town centre. But there is one which, in my humble opinion, stands out from the crowd. It isn’t the biggest – it’s actually quite a modest building – and it certainly isn’t the most outlandish in its design – it’s a simple, square block. It does, however, fit in perfectly in the historically important Forbury quarter of Reading. It has colour, it’s very open, you can walk through it and on a dreary wet afternoon in October it is very pretty indeed. It also reminds me just a little of the office building in Jaques Tati’s wonderful film Playtime. Don’t come to Reading just to see the Forbury Square office block but if you get a chance, watch the film and remember that there is a little corner of this Thames Valley town that reminds me of it every time I walk past…

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