Podcast: So long, and thanks for all the fish

By Jonn Elledge

Casablanca is 102 minutes long. Citizen Kane runs for 119. This, the 150th and final episode of Skylines, the CityMetric podcast, is longer than either, at 124. You lucky, lucky people.

I’ve loved doing this show over the last four and a bit years – it’s been a great opportunity to chat to interesting people about everything from transport and housing to smart cities and regional identities, with the odd argument about the tube or episode about ancient history thrown in for flavour. But for all sorts of reasons – not least of which is that I’ve stepped down as editor of CityMetric – this felt like the right time to stop.

I wanted to go out with a bang, though, and to hell with worrying about self-indulgence. So in this final, feature-length episode of Skylines you will hear:

  • Barbara Speed, my first co-host and now the opinion editor of the I Paper, on her enduring love of baked goods chain Greggs;

  • Our founding producer Roifield Brown, on the podcast’s origins, his native Birmingham and his love of San Francisco;

  • New Statesman political correspondent Patrick Maguire on the rise of the metro mayor, and a movie about both zombies AND public transport;

  • The Guardian’s media editor Jim Waterson, one of our more frequent guests, on why Britain’s transport network is quite good, actually;

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  • New Statesman political editor Stephen Bush on the best and worst cities for party conferences;

  • The New Statesman’s former environmental writer India Bourke on the joy of nature;

  • The Centre for Cities’ Paul Swinney on the town/city divide;

  • Our current producer Nick Hilton on the fun he’s had turning my rubbish into a podcast;

  • An interview with myself, about my favourite things about doing the show, conducted Agnes Frimston (who, when not being my wonderful and tolerant partner co-hosts the Chatham House podcast, Undercurrents);

  • And last, but very definitely not least, Sommer Mathis, CityMetric’s new editor in chief, on how she got into urbanism and her plans for the site.

All that, plus some clips from listeners, and some previously unreleased bits of my entirely excellent former co-host Stephanie Boland.

Thanks for tuning into Skylines these last few years. I’m gonna miss you guys.

The episode itself is below. You can subscribe to the podcast on Acast, iTunes, or RSS. Enjoy.​

Jonn Elledge was founding editor of CityMetric. He is on Twitter as @jonnelledge and on Facebook as JonnElledgeWrites.

Skylines is produced by Nick Hilton.




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