“Put Letchworth on the 3D Map!”


This page gives introductory briefings and links for the publishing and broadcast media.

F.f.i. see the Contact page for the Competition or contact us by message via David’s Bookshops. Supporters’ good wishes are quoted in Compliments. Our FaceBook page is here. North Hertfordshire College’s notice is here. Earthware’s afterthoughts are here.


This competition was designed to bring commercial and educational specialists together with members of the public to raise awareness of the numerous applications and career potentials of 3D modelling technologies.

What prizes were awarded?

See our Sponsors page for the prizes in goods and in cash, starting with the newly announced Google/Asus tablet: Nexus 7 with 32 GB of memory. We had almost £500 of total value of awards. However the value of our sponsors’ support far exceeded that sum, by way of advice, training, use of facilities and event management.

Who was invited to take part?

We addressed each audience in its own terms then bringing participants together for the finale in mid November 2012:

  1. Amateur computer users: to enable anyone to submit entries for the competition.
  2. Community groups: to provide the challenge of something new to explore and exhibit.
  3. Students and researchers: to suit their studies, by adding to their portfolio and/or as a research tool.
  4. Builders/architects: to provide publicity via a showcase of professional examples.
  5. Graphic and prototyping designers: to gain 3D skills and/or to showcase their 3D work.

About Letchworth and the Garden Cities movement

Interview in The Guardian 3rd April 2012 with John Lewis (2010, 2012), the Chief Executive Officer of Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation “Why the government sees Letchworth as a model community // The head of the world’s first garden city on the endorsement of its ethos in the government’s planning shakeup” here.

Article by the Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP in Guardian Professional, Monday 19 September 2011 “Garden cities: reshaping the ideas of the past for the 21st century // The housing minister says much can be learned from Ebenezer Howard in helping to solve our chronic housing shortage”. here

Letchworth – A Potted History on  YouTube video (3.5 minutes) from The One Show, BBC One TV channel, 2009. here

Letchworth and Welwyn Garden Cities: see Adrian Jones’s (‘JonesThePlanner’) critique and photographs.

Letchworth Festivals

The Letchworth Festival is an annual community event. In 2012 it ran from 8th to 24th June. During it and in July/August, thanks to North Herts. College, we ran ‘taster’ sessions in the use of Google (now Trimble) SketchUp software.

The Competition’s  finale took place during the Letchworth Arts Centre’s Festival of the 1970s & 1980s in mid-November 2012. (Note: Digital 2D and 3D modelling software emerged as a professional design tool toward the end of that period.)


Letchworth Garden City is midway between London and Cambridge. It was founded in 1903 as the first town to embody the Garden City principles of the inventor, journalist and writer Ebenezer Howard, 1850-1928 (‘Garden Cities of Tomorrow’, 1902/1946). The 3D_lgc project is running the competition mainly on a local basis in 2012 so as to raise awareness of this key technology (3D modelling) and to gather the support of relevant companies and institutions to promote it.

UK-wide and international

The Garden Cities movement arose in the early 20th century and spread worldwide within a few decades. It is concerned with urban design for living and working locally. This competition seeks to promote awareness of the design concepts that continue to be played out here and elsewhere (see critique by Dr Akinobu Murakami, 1998).

Entries from other areas of the UK and from overseas will be accepted, normally based on images imported from Google Street View to SketchUp. If the competition is a success this year, we will consider working with other Garden City settlements and adapting it to give further support to those entrants. We welcome enquiries about running similar events elsewhere.

Note: In international terms Letchworth Garden City is an early 20th Century New Town although formal use of that term (from the New Towns Act 1946) post-dates the actual Garden Cities in the UK.


For accessibility, the project relied on free software and services formerly provided by the Google and now by Trimble which acquired SketchUp and 3D Warehouse in 2012. Many other suppliers of 3D software tools are available, some of which appear in our Links page.

Awards Finale events

We held three days of events during 16-18 November 2012: two technical symposia on Friday 16 and a public stand in the weekend of 17-18. The Awards event took place on Sunday 25 and a Sponsors’ Evaluation on Friday 30 November. details

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