Public Benches Have A Sinister Feature You Might Not Know

2016-10-03 21:53:00Z
Hayley Mitchelhill-Miller
Hayley Mitchelhill-Miller

A Girl Has No Name... But if you must know I'm Hayley, aka Numpty 'coz I'm a clutz. I'm a Scoopla content producer, actor, martial artist, and you'll often find me binge-watching Netflix with my partner.

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Sometimes standing on our legs can be too darn tiring while we scroll through our Insta/Facebook feeds, or text a million emojis to our bestie to illustrate how darn sh*t our day at work was.

And it’s our tech obsession and obvious lack of observation skills which has made us all remain blind to a sinister dark side to those ‘trusty’ public benches we all sit our perf butts on…

You know how a lot of the benches we see around town are either: way too shallow for you to properly sit on, have slits that are so darn uncomfortable, have armrests to maintain personal bubble space…?

WELL, this isn’t just some fancy new-age design concept to make us look modern. It turns out that around the globe, these features are actually in place to repel the homeless population living on our streets. By incorporating armrests and uncomfortable or restricting features, homeless citizens are unable to use the seats to sleep on during the night.

These designs are actually known as defensive or disciplinary architecture… One reporter, Allegra Kirkland, has explained on Alternet back in 2015, that, “This style of architecture, which makes use of spikes, barricades, protrusions and checkpoints to prevent society’s unwanted from inhabiting public spaces, is not new.”

London has even installed ‘anti-homeless’ spikes in alcoves, especially in suburbs deemed as upper-class.

Another writer, Alex Andreou, described his experience of the hostile architecture when he became homeless to The Guardian.

"An old, wooden bench, made concave and smooth by thousands of buttocks, underneath a sycamore with foliage so thick that only the most persistent rain could penetrate it."

“Sheltered and warm, perched as it was against a wall behind which a generator of some sort radiated heat, this was prime property. Then, one morning, it was gone. In its place stood a convex metal perch, with three solid armrests. I felt such loss that day."

What are your thoughts on hostile architecture? Let us know in the Facebook comments!

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