Then, when our leaders succumbed to the technocratic, rationalistic optimism of the 1960s, we were "rehoused" in our modern, purpose-built towerblock. A handful of old nutters, as always happens when progress breaks in on such people, barricaded themselves in the old place and refused to shift. Eventually the bulldozers were called off, perimeter fences erected and the leaders sat back to wait for the old nutters to die off. That ought to have been the end of it, but for an odd and unthinkable development. Numbers of young towerblock-reared families, sick of the vandalism, the condensation, the unworkable underfloor heating, the broken lifts and the always-absent caretakers, began returning to the old place. They found a hole in the fence, and discovered to their astonishment that the old nutters were still there, remarkably spry in consideration of their years and the privations they had endured while seeing off the now-departed demolition men. Gradually they were joined by others; all settled in much as though they’d never left – except that their love for their ancient home and appreciation of its uniqueness was even greater than before. They began doing up the old place and raising their children.
They would like their tower block neighbours to join them, but they can’t force them to prefer good air, fine architecture and organic produce. If the tower block dwellers won’t come back, their choice must be respected. However we're obliged to warn them: there are dangerous cracks in the foundations and the concrete reinforcements are failing; the chief architect and several of the contractors (you may not be aware of this) went to prison; your children can’t stand living there, and clear out as soon as they are able; those who remain run the gauntlet of the muggers and drug-pushers infesting the stairwells. And be assured further – no power on earth will ever drive us back there again.