The Camden bench looks a lot like those concrete dividers so beloved by road maintenance crews – and that’s no accident, really. The bench is heavy enough to be positioned without anchoring; when it’s time to move somewhere else, no scars are left behind. They also make great security devices: according to the manufacturer, “an HMV (Hostile Vehicle Mitigation) version is available which has achieved a BSi PAS 68 rating.” Truly a Jack, er, a La-Z-Boy of all trades.
Running the Table Tennis
More like ruining, amiright? Those previously mentioned skateboarders considered the Camden bench to be a challenge and to paraphrase an internet meme – challenge accepted! Chris Alton of Cities Plus recently picked up the gauntlet, though instead of ‘boarding his venue is ping-pong, aka table tennis for you aficionados.
Alton’s variation on traditional ping-pong requires from two to six players, one ball, a paddle for each player and a (preferably unoccupied) Camden bench. Instead of a net, rallies end when the ball hits the pavement, effectively portraying the bench as the common opponent.
Challenging indeed… and how soon before we see this at a future Olympic Games? Somehow, we’re not sure Camden London Borough Council considered this possibility when they tendered out for the perfect “anti-social object”.