The Brits Who Built The Modern World - Episode one

Updated Wednesday 5th February 2014

Episode one takes a look at the revolutionary projects from the 1960s and 70s.

The Leadenhall and Lloyds buildings in London Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Nathan Kendall/OFTV The 'Cheesegrater' skyscraper

About the episode: The Freedom of the Future

From London's new 'Cheesegrater' skyscraper to the KK100 skyscraper in China (the tallest tower ever built by a British architect), episode one looks at the stunning recent work of an exceptional generation of British architects before looking in detail at some of their revolutionary projects from the 1960s and 70s.

Foster, Rogers, Nicholas Grimshaw, Michael Hopkins and Terry Farrell were born within six years of each other in the 1930s; shaped by both the opimtism of the post-war years and the sixties counterculture, these pillars of today's establishment began their careers as outsiders and radicals. Rogers and his collaborators tell the story of one of the most influential buildings of the 20th Century - the Pompidou Centre in Paris - the result of a contest he didn't want to enter and no-one ever thought they would win.

Other early projects featured include Norman Foster's glassy Willis Faber & Dumas Headquarters in Ipswich, Farrell & Grimshaw's corrugated aluminium tower block next to Regent's Park in London and the industrial-style Hopkins House in Hampstead. 

 

For further information, take a look at our frequently asked questions which may give you the support you need.

Have a question?

Other content you may like

OU on the BBC: Seven Ages Of Britain Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: BBC article icon

TV, Radio & Events 

OU on the BBC: Seven Ages Of Britain

David Dimbleby journeys through the nation’s past, from Iron Age pre-history to the present day. This is a history of British society told not through documents and written records, but through the material culture of each age – works of art, craft, and industry.

Article
Lenny's Britain - Family Matters Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Production team article icon

TV, Radio & Events 

Lenny's Britain - Family Matters

We begin the series in the bosom of the family. Here, humour is a way of dealing with tensions, especially those arising from the rights of passage - birth, marriage and death.

Article
OU on the BBC: The Challenger Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: BBC article icon

Science, Maths & Technology 

OU on the BBC: The Challenger

A new drama follows acclaimed scientist Richard Feynman’s search for the truth in the wake of the NASA Challenger disaster.

Article
OU on the BBC: Life in Cold Blood - ARCHIVE Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Production team article icon

TV, Radio & Events 

OU on the BBC: Life in Cold Blood - ARCHIVE

Another chance to join David Attenborough on his journey into the world of reptiles and amphibians.

Article
Julius Caesar and the present moment Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: BBC / RSC video icon

TV, Radio & Events 

Julius Caesar and the present moment

In this exclusive video, the director and producer of the BBC film version of the RSC's production of Julius Caesar talks about how it's relevant to the here and now 

Video
10 mins
The Secret Life of Books: Frankenstein Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: BBC article icon

TV, Radio & Events 

The Secret Life of Books: Frankenstein

Anatomist and author Professor Alice Roberts dissects one of the earliest examples of Science Fiction, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. 

Article
Rough Science 6 Colorado: Power Video Diaries: Hermione Cockburn Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Production team video icon

TV, Radio & Events 

Rough Science 6 Colorado: Power Video Diaries: Hermione Cockburn

Exclusive video extra in which Hermione Cockburn talks about the challenge for the Power programme, from the sixth BBC/OU TV series Rough Science, based in Colorado

Video
5 mins
Rough Science 4 Death Valley: Ellen McCallie's diary: Communication Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Production team article icon

TV, Radio & Events 

Rough Science 4 Death Valley: Ellen McCallie's diary: Communication

Communication is vital to any mission. The team's challenge is to find alternative ways of getting the message across – Ellen and Mike try to develop a pen that can write in zero gravity.

Article
Rough Science 5 Zanzibar: Video extras: To the Lighthouse Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Production team video icon

TV, Radio & Events 

Rough Science 5 Zanzibar: Video extras: To the Lighthouse

Follow Ellen in this exclusive video extra as she prepares coconut oil to light the lighthouse, as part of the fifth BBC/OU TV series Rough Science, based in Zanzibar

Video
5 mins