Robin was invited at the Child in the City Conference in Ghent by four Russian delegates after attending a talk by David Ball on the current issues surrounding managing risk in play.
The Seminar was set up specifically to introduce the Russian play sector to the importance of offering children the opportunity to take risks when they play and how those situations can be managed. He shared the platform with colleague and competitor, Julian Richter, of Richter Spielgerate. Robin brought the experience of Chairing the Play Safety Forum in the UK and Julian Chairing the European Standards Committee as well as designing and manufacturing play equipment for many decades.
Whilst there Robin had the opportunity to spend time visiting iconic landmarks throughout the capital and was thrilled to have the chance to visit the Kremlin. Robin was surprised to discover it was designed and built by an Italian architect and a piazza that compares with those of Tuscany sits within the well-known red brick walls!
Robin says: “In my imagination this was a red, inaccessible walled fortress. This could not be further than the truth because it is so much more than that. It contains one of the most perfect urban spaces I have ever seen, including the wonderful squares of Tuscan Hill towns.”
Another of Robin’s passions is for Russian Constructivist Architecture, the revolutionary movement that was one of the principal influences on early modernist architects such as Corbusier and the Bauhaus and in pursuing this he was able to visit Melnikov’s iconic house, which he said was the highlight of his trip!