How does a city best meet its water needs?  "This is a question that is as relevant today [in 1999] in Birmingham as it was one hundred years earlier.  As towns and cities are expanding globally, there is a need to learn from the past if we are to plan for a sustainable future." 

The water crisis that Birmingham faced at the end of the nineteenth century provides a fascinating local case-study of the social, economic, environmental and political debates at that time.  The Council's controversial decision to bring water from Wales was a far-sighted one ... but there were issues .. it had its costs .

Water for a city explores the debates at the heart of this local case-study, and relate the subject matter to our own lives today.  It draws upon a wide range of historical sources and uses a range of classroom activities to enable students to debate the key issues and draw their own conclusions.  The ideas and approaches contain a strong 'citizenship' dimension, as they aim to develop students' skills of participation and decision-making.  

There are five sections, each focused on a key question:

•  Why did Birmingham need a new water supply? 
•  Why did Birmingham choose the Elan Valley to supply its water? 
•  What problems did the planners face, and how were they solved?
•  What were the consequences of the Elan Valley development? 
•  What can we learn from the Elan Valley development today? 

The project was developed in partnership with Severn Trent Water.

ISBN-10: 0 948838 62 0
 

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