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Landscape at 50

1966 - 2016: 50 Years of Landscape at Leeds Beckett

Landscape at Leeds Beckett

We are proud to be celebrating 50 years of landscape architecture at Leeds Beckett University. It's a time to reflect on the achievements of the course and it's graduates and point the way forward to the creative challenges that lie ahead. 

The celebrations include a range of events such as exhibitions, lectures and debates. They will explore, through the eyes of staff and alumni our landscape courses the principles and processes relating to design of the landscape. Landscape education has now been offered at Leeds Beckett University for 50 years and during this time more than a thousand graduates and colleagues associated with the landscape courses have contributed in very positive ways to landscape development throughout the world. The events will focus on the why and how to design landscapes across a range of scales and situations including garden art and design, landscape and urban design and environmental planning. What constitutes successful landscape architecture will be a recurring question.

From Education to Practice

At Leeds Beckett University the theoretical basis for landscape architecture is largely taught through design action and this creates a strong bridge between the academic environment and landscape practice beyond university. Within an educational framework students are encouraged to develop their own philosophies and approaches to landscape design and to focus on projects that will inform their future careers. This has resulted in a broad spectrum of post education practice work spanning the period 1966 to 2016 that has been designed and implemented in various ways, through practices large and small, in the UK and international settings.

Review of Achievements and Lessons For The Future

It is timely to review many of these achievements, to celebrate the profession of landscape architecture and the contribution of designers through a wide range of landscape projects. Unlike the products of other design disciplines landscape develops and changes over time and schemes will often take 50 or more years to mature and may evolve through a number of stages and in a variety of ways. In this way the architecture of landscape is unique and by reflecting on the strengths and weaknesses of projects lessons can inform students and practitioners who will be designing landscapes of the future.

Themes to be covered

From the start, our landscape courses at Leeds Beckett University have been organised in relation to a number of key themes including creative design processes and visual communication; landscape ecology and the living world; the importance of place and place-making; responding to human needs through the involvement of communities and the use of landscape technology in innovative ways. In a number of respects these themes have heralded the importance of conserving and developing environmentally sustainable landscapes, which only in recent years has become more widely recognised as essential to human wellbeing.

50 Years of Landscape Logo

Project case studies from some of our alumni

Focus on Landscape

Eden Project
Eden Project
The Eden Project tells the story of Man and Plants, from food stuffs to complex science and economic relationships, using landscape as the canvas.
City Park, Bradford
City Park, Bradford
The 2003 Bradford City Centre Masterplan was the beginning of the story that led to City Park.
Madina Al Irfan
Madina Al Irfan
Madinat Al Irfan is a 700-hectare, 5 million sqm planned urban extension in Muscat, Oman - a sustainable and low-carbon new city near Muscat International Airport.

50 Years of Alumni Exhibition

In association with the Landscape Institute we invited former students and members of staff to  submit their work as part of an exhibition to be held at Leeds Beckett between 19-26 October

Exhibition Images

Brodie McAllister
Eleanor Fuller
Oliver Brown
Floating Delights - Sarah Foque
Steven Heywood (BA Hons / PG Dip Landscape Architecture)

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50 Years of Landscape

Mar 21

Lines Are Not Design by Paul Hensey

An appreciation of detailing will improve design ability and delivering a scheme that is fit for purpose. This talk will illustrate that lines on a page do not always equate to design - it is enlightenment and not the devil that hides in the detail.

More Events

Landscape Courses

50 Years of Landscape at leeds Beckett

Hands-on experience is at the heart of all our courses - from working in our studio spaces, on real-life sites, or getting stuck into live projects.

Undergraduate Courses

Postgraduate Courses