Tag Archives: Architecture

Think out-of-town shopping centres are a thing of the past? Take a look at Rushden Lakes and despair

The river Nene – the slowest-flowing river in England, and its tenth-longest – meanders through Northamptonshire past water meadows and dozens of former gravel pits, long ago flooded and now a nationally important habitat for wetland birds. Northamptonshire’s an underrated … Continue reading

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Politicians should get out of Westminster for its restoration – and stay out

News that the Palace of Westminster will be out of bounds for six years for the £4bn mother of all restorations has provoked a stream of predictable responses. A strange coalition of metropolitan Guardianistas like John Harris, nationalists and devolutionists … Continue reading

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Of all the places: in praise of Northamptonshire, the middle of everywhere

German has a good word – unheimlich – for this eerie feeling: when something mysterious or unfamiliar somehow makes uncanny sense. Over the last year I’ve felt it in the most unlikely of places: Northamptonshire. Let me explain why. Nearly … Continue reading

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Inside the planning committee: it’s not enough to say it’s all fair and impartial. You have to show it is, too

What goes on at Town hall planning committees these days? In theory it works like this. A committee of about a dozen councillors, politically balanced to match the composition of the council as a whole, assesses planning applications based on … Continue reading

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My old snapshot from 1991 shows how the London skyline has changed utterly – and how it has stayed the same

Sorting through some old photos in my cellar a few months ago I came across a snapshot of the London skyline I took, as a callow 17-year-old, in the autumn of 1991. Out of curiosity, in late 2014 I went back … Continue reading

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Greenwich Peninsula: how a council own-goal took the heat off greedy developers, and the Tories who let them get away with it

Hats off to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism for its new exposé of what’s been going on at the Greenwich Peninsula: a billionaire developer reducing levels of affordable housing from 35% to just 21%, and the local council’s attempts to … Continue reading

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A storm in a teacup: the Guardian misses the point about Charles’ black spider memos

Dear Minister, Thank you so much for joining me at the inaugural symposium of my Global Bear Preservation Initiative at Clarence House recently. I know that I will be lampooned by so-called “modernisers” as a inexcusable old stick-in-the mud, but … Continue reading

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