The haunted paddock: exploring the roots of an ambiguous urban green space

BENNETT, Luke (2019). The haunted paddock: exploring the roots of an ambiguous urban green space. People, Place and Policy, 12 (3), 225-240.

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Research on public access to urban green space tends to focus upon access-takers’ motives and meaning-making. The motives and meaning-making of the owners and managers who control such spaces are rarely examined. To address this deficit this article presents a longitudinal case study examining how an owner's ambivalent stance over public access to his public house’s exterior 'beer garden' area arose from its (and his) habitus. The case study shows how the owner came to unwittingly present this as an uninviting and ambiguous urban green space by inheriting and perpetuating a preexisting, habitual encoding of territoriality at his struggling, city-fringe commercial premises. In interpreting this ambivalence, the article examines the influence of both local and wider structural factors showing how both material traces of prior ordering and the owner’s pragmatic understandings of liability and risk shaped this place, and made it simultaneously appear both open and closed to public access.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number:
Page Range: 225-240
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 19 Feb 2019 14:28
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 06:34

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