Recent books

No Matter How Many Skies Have Fallen: back to the land in wartime Britain

No Matter How Many Skies Have Fallen cover by Ken Worpole

On Lady Day, 25 March 1943, a group of radical pacifists took possession of a 300-acre farm in Frating, Essex, creating a self-sufficient community of up to 50 adults and children and a sanctuary for refugees and prisoners-of-war. In No Matter How Many Skies Have Fallen, writer & social historian Ken Worpole recreates the life of Frating Hall Farm through the recorded memories of the children who grew up there, together with archive documents, letters, photographs, recalling the passionate ideals of the back-to-the-land movement in wartime and post-war England. The book is beautifully designed and contains many evocative photographs, maps and testimonies, combined to recreate the ‘lost history’ of one of the most remarkable idealistic rural communities of its kind in the 20th century.

Published by Little Toller Books, 2021, reprinted 2022. £15

New Jerusalem: the good city and the good society

New Jerusalem book cover by Ken Worpole

This book-length essay traces the journey from the religious and political energies in late 19th century social movements, from utopian ideals of town planning – most famously Ebenezer Howard’s Garden City – through both small and large-scale social experiments in the planning of model communities up to the present day.

The Swedenborg Society, October 2015. £6.95
First edition sold out - second edition back in print

Order New Jerusalem from

The New English Landscape book cover

The New English Landscape

by Jason Orton & Ken Worpole

Published by Field Station | London
October 2013, reprinted October 2014

This important study of contemporary landscape aesthetics, with 22 colour photographs by Jason Orton, has been widely acclaimed in the architectural, design and landscape press.

It discusses landscape as heritage, as a rich pictorial tradition in art, as an ecology, and, perhaps most importantly, as a site of crucial contemporary debates about the value and meaning of place in a modern, post-industrial society.

88 pages, Fine Art Print Quality, designed by Matter. £15


Contemporary Library Architecture book cover

Contemporary Library Architecture: a planning and design guide

by Ken Worpole

Published by Routledge, May 2013

The past decade has seen a proliferation of big library projects in Europe and North America.

This comprehensive guide to the civic philosophy behind the new library movement contains over 150 colour photographs of new library buildings, with many plans and drawings, as well as detailed case studies of new libraries under construction, from start to finish.

216 pages, large format, 150 photographs & plans, paperback. £44.99


working at Frating farmThe book is exceptional in its ability to inform about the political, social and literary landscapes of the time, as well as the geological landscape in East Anglia, but also how these often complex and conflicting histories are presented so compassionately....One has the impression after finishing this intelligent and compelling book that Worpole has himself contributed to the fascinating Frating Hall Farm community. It is a great achievement.
Lucia Dove, Caught By The River, September 2021

Letchworth Garden CityI’ve been forced to confront a deeper sense of spirituality in a beautiful new book published by the Swedenborg Society called New Jerusalem by the hugely influential architectural critic Ken Worpole.
David Boyle, Town & Country Planning
photo: Arts & Crafts housing at Letchworth Garden City

Benfleet, March 2013For well over 40 years Ken Worpole has been one of the most eloquent and forward-thinking writers in Britain. The New English Landscape, a collaboration with photographer Jason Orton, is a characteristically fine-grained and suggestive book, beautifully written and designed.
Icon Magazine

We regret to say that The New English Landscape is now out of print.

canada-libraryKen Worpole brings a welcome authoritative insight into the contemporary cityscape and the changing role of libraries. The book is essential reading…well presented and richly illustrated with photographs and plans. The author’s enthusiasm for his subject is clear – he loves libraries and wants his readers to love them too.
Society of Architectural Librarians

Buy Contempory Library Architecture at