Die Wand

One of my favourite films/books is Die Wand (The Wall) based on a novel by Austrian writer Marlen Haushofer. It’s about woman trapped in an alpine valley by a mysterious invisible barrier that suddenly descends overnight. It is a frightening but also strangely attractive fantasy of isolation.

So when I saw this fence snaking across a large part of one of the Heath’s hills I didn’t just think of walls in places like pre-’89 Germany or present-day Israel. It looks more like the kind of fence around a rock festival.

It’s there to keep us away from where the builders working on new dams for the Highgate Ponds are going to extract and dump earth as they dig away on this pointless project for the next few years.

The open sections will allow us one everyone’s favourite spectator sports – watching other people working.



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