kevin toner

172 comments By kevin toner

  • 7 out of 7 wrong - SomeoneStoleMyNick

    Don't dare reorder my text to suit yourself, I don’t have a nickname to steal!

    It all reads pinpoint correct despite your attempt to undo it.

    I can take you through each of your 7 points easily, but can’t we get back onto the subject please?

    Commented on: 2015-04-23T11:49:49.520

    Mackintosh library before the fire

    Replication is never the right thing to do

  • “...Mackintosh was anticipating the movement prior to such forefronts arising. This pre 1910s art school provides a case in point. It is practically in every serious modern architecture book known.”

    e.g. Have a look at Frampton's Chapter 5 dedicated entirely to Mackintosh on Modern Architecture and therefore GSA - and more importantly the images chosen (the b&w interior shot of the library is jaw dropping and there’s a cutaway axonometric to boot plus an albeit out of date early design plan; and the beautifully drawn Hill House perspective) - and then you might understand why we're not dealing with a minimum intervention job here.

    Minimum intervention was fine until now. Whoever effects it in the aftermath will be the laughing stock of the conservation world, but the real conservator - Mackintosh himself, and those who've paid attention to C20th architectural discourse, will not be laughing when we botch this opportunity up.

    This school is an intrinsic part of the world’s laboratory on architecture. Millions of pages/references pay homage to it. Let’s not rubbish the real thing now when it is crying out for the same brains that built it.

    My fee rises to 1000k!

    Commented on: 2015-04-23T10:00:52.247

    Mackintosh library before the fire

    Replication is never the right thing to do

  • explosively gold and plentiful!

    Commented on: 2015-04-23T01:49:58.697

    Mackintosh library before the fire

    Replication is never the right thing to do

  • “...second round in proclaiming modern architecture”

    Had my eggcorn been 'roundel' [also a rung(1) in my dictionary] or much worse, 'roundelay' with zilch connection, then I’d have added it to my hall of fame.

    My most embarrassing has been ‘alas’ for 'at last' when I was in my 20s, but it was fortunately corrected in time.

    Before then, in the spoken word, I once gave the answer “the Joint Contracts Tribuneral” to a lecture question, when JCT would’ve sufficed.

    The dictionary has been by my side ever since, until now of course. Thanks for flagging it up!

    I’ve also slipped up once with a word misapplication in published commentary when I was as a 40 something around half a decade ago by writing 'minefield of information' instead of 'mine of information' for someone whose facts were explosive if not gold.

    ps Well spotted.

    Commented on: 2015-04-23T01:45:02.403

    Mackintosh library before the fire

    Replication is never the right thing to do

  • Quoting SomeoneStoleMyNick, “What is the point of pasting an entire extremely poorly-written essay? What, for example, is "the forefront of the second rung" supposed to mean?”

    1) the point is that it gets my thoughts publicised so that they can be discussed or even built upon if I or we were to be so lucky and does so without me having to spend too much time on it.

    2) it basically refers to the vanguard (FOREFRONT) of the second round in proclaiming modern architecture, i.e. as (RUNG2). “Forefront” speaks for itself as ‘vanguard’. However, I admit my use of “rung” is an eggcorn relating to being a past participle of i) ‘to proclaim/re-sound/re-echo’; and more figuratively ii) ‘to summon*, usher, announce with a bell or bells [or rather rhetoric or polemics]’ as in oh yeah oh yeah announcements; or broadcast news headlines, etc., which does rings true due to the alarming manner in which pronouncements had to come across, i.e. to establish the modern movement.

    Modern times have long been with us and we now have all of the technology in the world to revisit how best to present its seeds when called for. Why rely on the countless numerous books – for the world’s greatest example of how such seeds were sown – when we have the real thing in the flesh, in live working order (?)

    Well almost so. It’s our duty to make it so.

    Are you with us?

    -

    Back to my eggcorn!

    You really got me there, but it also isn't one at the same time (led by the word’s other meanings), but I’m not going to use this as an excuse. It simply fuelled the eggcorn (due to its connotations with summoning, proclaiming, etc.).

    With “RUNG1”, I can be referring to A) the rounded spoke-like ladder ‘step’ metaphor for stage/degree/etc., maybe that’s a bonus [or actual non-eggcorn use] meaning because I am indeed insinuating stages (to a degree!); B) There is in my dictionary a RUNG3 meaning ‘having a ring through the nose’. If modernism has more than one ring through its nose then maybe I could add that too as personification, let’s say it’s been rung trice, what ring are talking here: perhaps the 2nd rung.

    An edit will have sorted it, so I am excusing myself for that reason if no other.

    [an aside on the history and discourse:- Mendelsohn was indeed one of the main proponents in the 1920s, as was e.g. Corb etc., in the 2nd bout of proclamations etc. rung (probably the most necessary push prior to the next lot that were rung). The first to bear a like vanguard was 1910s based.

    Mackintosh was anticipating the movement prior to such forefronts arising. This pre 1910s art school provides a case in point. It is practically in every serious modern architecture book known.

    The words ‘rhetoric and polemics’ were commonly used in discourse to describe the tone and periods of this proclaiming: from the 1910s onward.

    The rungs* as I mindlessly referred to them were most distinctive, at their heights, in the first couple or so midpoints of each successive decade. Otherwise the passing on of such tenets has always been one great big heaped and dateless mash, especially during the later worshipping of Corb and thereafter, and even before it hence the following. It took some time for the modernism tenet to pass from the ‘10s to the ‘20s hence my acknowledgement of the “second” such and such.

    (*I’m not editing yet, but could you suggest a word replacement to keep things short and sweet, let’s say for the prize of winning your argument? Don’t use online dictionaries, which are getting scantier by the day.]

    Apologies to have confused you!

    Remember, though, that the thread’s about architecture not English.

    Commented on: 2015-04-22T19:17:48.143

    Mackintosh library before the fire

    Replication is never the right thing to do

  • ps Regarding my previous post at #12, try viewing https://rosswolfe.files.wordpress.com/2013/02/red-banner-textile-factory-mendelsohn-1930.jpg to see a 1926 example by Mendelsohn as a case in point.

    He was at the forefront of the second rung of architectural pioneers taking this kind of industrial language forward long before brutalism took effect.

    The first rung was led by Gropius in the early 1910s when Corb (of the next rung) was, as yet, clerical on the industrial aesthetic as a book translator. Deregulation of reinforced concrete was timely for most pioneers later, but perhaps too late, for Mackintosh whom I’d argue slightly preceded Gropius in a like agenda over the application of an industrial aesthetic in its promotion for the Werkbund and eventually the Bauhaus.

    I referred to as archaeology since much of the original industrial icons, including their architectural emanation, are either lost or abandoned. It became an architectural language after world war, especially in the building/differentiation of Canada’s take on the metropolis, where it was urbanism rather than a style.

    Does therefore the GSoA represent the earliest form of this kind of industrial emanation of, not merely the international style steel glazing, but of the homogenous concrete floor slab, which Mackintosh felt compelled to apportion to the domains of not merely the think tank space below the library, the lecture theatre, but for the sandwiched late addition of an architecture department in-between, which apparently took up most of the ground floor space in the original westward extension and had therefore began to be a soffit form that seeped out (grew) beyond the inner volume verticality of the library core (tower shaft of spaces) to reach the north face of the building, as one might say is expressed on the west elevation.

    Yet for the library itself and above it too, it is an ancient Japanese muse that takes the precedence instead. Everyone is then reminded of the importance of cyclic conservation as opposed to that in aspic, patina, scuffing and scratching, which soon comes along anyway within reachable wood. The rebuild should in fact become or appear more aged (touched upon) and used if plans are true to open up the space again for regular use.

    The rest of the studios’ soffits are generally truly expressed as timber/steel rather than Brutalist pseudo concrete, i.e. except for where:

    A) I reiterate, for the former west wing architecture dept., which brought the massive library core pseudo-soffit from under the library, which senior students occupied, through to run alongside the north elevation too (of what was the former Junior architecture dept) with an industrial looking gridded array (in viewing RCAHMS Canmore photos at http://canmore.rcahms.gov.uk/en/site/120095/digital_images/glasgow+167+renfrew+street+glasgow+school+of+art/?show=all) with (image SC00677598) the main beams running naturally perpendicular across the shorter span and with most infill beams therefore taking arguably much more sacrificial joists than that afforded for the library (save possibly re-orientated joists (?) across the stone bays where even shorter infill beams are probably acting as ties rather than joist supports per se...); and where

    B) probably all of the primary upper studios e.g. here (http://photos.kevinscotttoner.co.uk/#!album-100-258) where the Expamet has generally failed but fortunately without disastrous consequences to the girders and clerestory concrete slab, and seen again here (from an erroneously captioned image SC01372805), which would stand to reason as there’s no crossing timber joists anyway for supporting the clerestory level above, which was inserted across the entire north elevation as part of the Ph2 extension works. This RCAHMS image is from the surviving Ph1 part of the building, which proves that Mackintosh altered the east wing to suit, for consistency.

    This RCAHMS image here (SC01427701) shows that the actual library soffit above its [lately misused] bookstore was like the Upper studios – a true [pre-Code of Practice style] concrete graced with pseudo concrete beams (practically identical to those two levels immediately below the library, which are rather ‘lying lying’ to support timber joists guised as actual concrete), but in fact NB more importantly not too many levels below in the sub-basement workshop at the very bottom of the core, which despite much thicker walls resumes the building’s typical wood joists on steel approach. This original approach, for the 1897 Ph1, is purist and survives best for presumably the majority of basement studios throughout; the set back north clerestory studios to the east that survived the fire; and the primary east ground floor wing (also to the north) that didn’t harbour the former architecture dept. on the 1909 west portion of the run; including the entirety of the mezzanine soffits on the main upper floor studios facing north; including circulation. There’s also a lot of idiosyncrasy at play in some of the spaces that dream up an ingenious concoction of various soffit types...

    However, back to the concrete muses that shouldn’t be being ignored - note the beauty of it exposed at open half landings, hence an original advocacy. We must get to the bottom of it especially as the 2014 fire offers the next potential for change after penultimate changes in dividing the space left by the former junior architecture dept on the north west run, where the original false concrete soffit will still be evidenced although largely fire damaged. The ‘room by room’ account of the presentation will have documented all of this, whereas I am going largely upon memory for now.

    This precursory brutalism is expressed, if not arguably on the west facade itself with its bulking out of stone planes/forms, then certainly internally as any photo within the library core spaces below the library in its equally robust structural expression at:

    a) very importantly, the original senior architecture dept. space immediately below the library; and

    b) the lecture theatre below that (again, the sub-basement workshop below that at the very base resumes the Ph1-led normality/generality of exposed timber and naked steel support, I’d argue since it’s not the lecture theatre above that’s critical, it’s the library, hence the implied robustness repeated in the [once senior architecture dept.] space immediately below it. The library core’s floors would have been slightly more robust in any event due to the benefits of its narrower width as a core, e.g. possibly denser and/or deeper timber joists zone upon full sized girders rather than a tied up steel frame with reduced sized secondary steel. However, is the original fakery enough to adequately set the library’s datum in stone with the efficient level of fire integrity that real reinforced concrete would offer (?)

    Will the winning architect want to indefinitely leave the originally anticipated fire integrity, below the library, as enhanced as it was, to the mercy of fire in the name of authenticity or will conservation principle ‘integrity’, and/or with greater fire integrity, take precedence.

    Maybe there’s a way that can retain the original fakery that will improve integrity further and still allow the engineered false oak library posts to connect with this in the way discovered/shown in P\P’s ‘piece by piece’ account, but when does it become romanticism/sentiment as opposed to genuinely constraints driven. Two of this conundrum’s most primary constraints possibly no longer matter as the world watches, which I’ll discuss in detail later:

    1) Lack of funds; and

    2) Slightly over 100 years of deregulated concrete experience. During design, at around 1907-09, there was practically none.

    As hinted previously, there is much less of an issue regarding the indeed romantically fake-concrete soffit of the adjacent north run of primary ground floor space, which are more sacrificial given there’s merely studios rather than spaces like the library above. It may be time in fact to give this run (along the 1909 extension) an 1897 flavour of exposed timber steel since the Junior architecture dept has long relocated as opposed to repairing the false Brutalist-like soffit that no longer spans its full space due to a degree of subdivision into more typical studio cells.

    I wouldn’t like to say the same for the main upper studios’ soffits, where these same false concrete beams (Expamet covered steel) are in fact supporting a mass (not reinforced) concrete slab rather than the disguised timber joists.

    There’s no need to replace the surviving clerestory concrete slab, which also caps the library core as a soffit and survives courtesy of the fire fighters input in saving the building.

    A replacement reinforced beam and slab, as originally faked, will no longer be necessary due to a new concreting method that can be fed horizontally into leaky confined spaces such as would occur around beam runs I’d imagine. The savings would be astronomical in being able to retain the mass concrete as is, but by reasserting the supporting steel’s protection in the above manner as opposed to a false Expamet-like fire protective covering. Building Control authorities won’t demand this; it would have to come from the architect. A typical fire protected covering like today’s equivalents of Expamet would be sufficient for public safety, duration-wise, but in order to secure the building’s future given that fire fighting protocol might not always permit the same levels of bravery for buildings as for lives, it would need the architect to use the new concrete technology now available for such a problem.

    Steel beam concrete encasement below a mass concrete slab will be the perfect scenario to avail of this, name escapes, newly available methodology in concreting, and it brings Mackintosh closer to his ideal without having to lie/deceive for the appearance of such Brutalist style elements. There will of course be a requirement to re-detail the suspension connections shown in the online RCAHMS archive (image SC01427701).

    The fakery (of concrete modernism) is quite a different matter where solely wood/steel soffits are involved where, I reiterate:

    1) Below the library floor and below that again in lecture theatre, much of which is unscathed perhaps because of the solid vertical compartmentation originally envisaged; and again

    2) Adjacent to (outwith) the vertical library core along the north side where the formerly anticipated architecture [Junior] dept. was based. This dept had long relocated to its annex Brutalist building and its former home faces (inter alia) it via the original west gable (http://photos.kevinscotttoner.co.uk/#!album-97-252).

    Unless another special unit/dept is reinstated to occupy the latter (2) IMO I would see no need to repair the fakery of the soffit, but to instead repeat the 1897 flavour of exposed timber/steel to a degree that will depend on how consistent/beautiful the joists are distributed relative to the steelwork. Without peeking, I’d guess they’d be rather higglety pigglety, and so then yes, a fakery will call: and thereby perhaps a client impetus to reopen the original run of the space as formerly subdivided (suffering the most ruin/damage) to make the most of the design choice.

    Once again, that original space can be seen from the online RCAHMS archive image SC00677598.

    The alternatives are of course to either: install the real thing in tandem, it would speak with the space below the library that it originally links to, but if there isn’t a preciously fit-out library above, which there isn’t, then why bother, I’d de-fake below the library first before this adjacent space as a priority; or, YES, replicate the original 1897 soffits of the east run by reconfiguring the steelwork to suit for a cloned west run, and in which case this would suit the present day need for as many properly cloned (as they aren’t at the moment) north studios as possible as opposed to an integrated unit/dept. space as there’d originally been (hence the expansively gridded pseudo-concrete soffit). This will then however isolate the fakery on that level – of a false concrete soffit – to where its least appreciated, i.e. as a veritably un-struck match supporting the library floor, and particularly because this false-concrete soffit presently oversails a warren of smaller [recent past] studio subdivisions as unintended by a Mackintosh that would be turning in a grave if he were to be told of the doubled/trebled up fire risk resulting. It was a different route that the 2014 fire had taken and perhaps a pity that it hadn’t been via the warren route below the library’s false concrete floor. If that set datum had however disappeared, Alan and others would have went to town and had an absolute field day on the replica-happy brigade. He’s already tried, and not even me on another earlier thread, unintentionally misleading readers that the floor was genuinely concrete, was able to sway his thirst for an outright re-interpretation, “what” I said, and that there wasn’t a hole as such (yes there was/is in a way, shh) but a highly defined dimension to which everything (all library components) is set courtesy of a datum set in [sic] the concrete to which all of the rubble/debris is resting.

    Yes, it’s all one gigantic conundrum that the thinking process conjures.

    and to where this currently sits under

    NB: As with the former (1), i.e. the soffits below the library, these will not be higglety pigglety in their joist arrangement other than via a possible need to increase integrity if retaining the wood/steel formula. Yet note Mackintosh declined to regress into exposing a timber/steel arrangement (referencing that 1890s phase purity that graces most of the totality, the overall building, as discussed) as he’d conversely did in the sub-basement of this very same core (see RCAHMS images again for the sub-basement workspace for evidence).

    This demonstrates that Mackintosh was very careful when and when not to apply each soffit regime between exposed and falsified. Note again that when falsified, this was in the name of a play (combinations/logics) between fire protection and/or aesthetic, and maybe more.

    I would agree with this hindsight in retrospect, as discussed. This aesthetic will stay regardless of retaining it or replacing it for real. The question is double-edged in that: i) shouldn’t this fakery, to an extent fire protected, be bolstered if retained with greater fire integrity and how; or ii) Shouldn’t it be entirely supplanted with the real thing before the refit is rebuilt, which will be the last chance available unless uncontrollable fire was to strike the library again, perhaps via the very lack of integrity that will be present if none of this question isn’t tackled, i.e. the uneducated logic might be ‘if it isn’t broke don’t fix it’.

    The false soffits that do actually remain unscathed, here and below, will not need intervention/alteration according to convention (not wisdom per se) especially if the cult to replicate, for replication’s sake, the ingenious budgetary detailing of the library refit 100% faithfully takes precedence. This magnitude of replication (veritably 100%) will require the false floor below and core lid beams above to remain faked to preclude the need to re-detail the two very necessary interface connection points at the top and bottom. [ps I’ll be repeating myself later on this, in Chapter 2 below]

    This is what I’m guessing from what I’ve heard so far, a cult not architect. Time will however tell, as the process is to be made public (as promised in the press recently, thanks BD et al).

    The selected team/client must soon unbundle all observations, including especially my own if they haven’t already, so that lessons can be learned shortly on how best to proceed. Why this should wait until public participation is both perhaps a good and a bad thing. For it to be good, points that I raise here will need to be answered in that forum. The chosen panel has done well to do anything but shy away. Let’s hope it sustains this as the public interrogates, but will the public (me?), and will feedback be responded to (from them)?

    Ideally, if not within the team itself, an expert or someone gifted enough (not anywhere near the genius who’d got it built in the first place) needs to come back into the picture to ghost on the way forward. That person and/or team will be able to distinguish – at least for debate, then for consensus – between what should be retained or replaced (and explain, tie-up all, of the reasons thereto); and be able to respond to the public’s feedback because it (the public) may have questions like mine’s requiring acceptable answers.

    Mackintosh did not architect this masterpiece for others (from a self indulging conservation project team) to rubbish it on the eve of its potential purification. Had Mackintosh not given this masterpiece an unprecedented level of pre-ordained conservation in the first place, it would have made the job to rubbish it much more acceptable.

    However, the conservators aren’t dabbling this time with anything other than the greatest masterpiece of pre-ordained conservation that I’m guessing there’s ever been. Mackintosh wasn’t even a conservationist yet the level of pre-ordained conservation thought/thinking in this masterpiece is beyond that of any registered/accredited conservation architect that has ever claimed to be such. Dogmas plague the scene. Even architects proper dismiss the necessary thoughts/thinking process through separate dogmas to satisfy present day construction and products. I’m hoping the P\P et al (team) will prove me wrong, not in arriving with the best outcome per se, but in arriving at the outcome at least by having acknowledged and answered to my mind (and others’)what will be pressing questions.

    This is what the team should be pleased to entertain as it’s not dealing with any old building. The team must be reminded that this adage is in fact true and not of the lying variety that will be willy nilly praised in the mags and journals afterwards of any answered damage and neglect of thought.

    This building deserves that such questions and thoughts be answered before the results of what the present day industry can muster gets to the coffee table.

    Please, team, make sure that these drawings are made public well before tender stage so that a tender will make sense.

    At the moment, don’t dare, tender out the ‘piece by piece’ document! That has won the competition, but shouldn’t serve as the basis for moving forward nor for a new conservation plan.

    We are much more educated now in conservation philosophy. Let’s show it off though rather than our dogmas. The best egos in this project might be the ones that accept the most bashing. I’ll be rooting for them and likely to be decrying the unabashed.

    Deliberation is called for because it’s the Glasgow School of Art. I’m suspicious that deliberation is planned to come through public participation as the architects are going to make every drawing public. One might fear that this may mean washing hands of responsibility should the public not respond with the feedback and vice versa. I charge a mere 100k salary as an adviser to a job like this if I’m needed, therefore good luck if I’m not. I’m already perhaps asking things that will prefer not to be answered. However, with a scheme already green lighted up as this one, with relaxed regulations a given, etc., one cannot apologise for asking difficult questions deserving of such a masterpiece.

    Most of the above was written after the following, which I will now review and edit down or, if not, may find myself repeating myself, which may not be a bad thing.

    CHAPTER 2

    Again then, no one has answered the following question, albeit earlier days yet, but let’s not ask it too late either:-

    Can a ‘refitted-library-interior-to-be’ risk not having a floor upgrade to real concrete?

    An ignoratio elenchi that will avoid it now will be around 10 times as worse later. This won’t be in society’s interest, so hopefully proper responses will transpire before a celebration of our creeds feeds into the awards, books and periodicals waiting in the pipeline, or as the case may have to be Phd research into what goes wrong when philosophy and industry don’t mix well.

    The present team may not want (find it sacrilege) to re-detail the Library’s ingenious timber fit-out connections onto i) a real concrete library floor slab at the base; and [let’s not forgetting from that new technology that will enable it] dropped from ii) real concrete encased girders at the Library core’s head slab, luckily still intact thanks to the firemen. That said, not replicating the budgetary softwood cloning of oak for the posts, or let’s say an even better hardwood, perhaps that used to carve the ornate convex balustrade features, which I don’t think was oak (have a look at photos I’ve sourced/picked on Google+), would relieve the necessity to suspend the bookstore with such gymnastics that Mackintosh had felt compelled to do, presumably as softwood shrinks, there probably being no dimensionally stable production/supply back then. These gymnastics are however, intriguingly visual (again see RCAHMS image 1427701), and it might well be worth suspending the bookstore irrespectively of what the post material is to be below. The Japanese probably wouldn’t have needed to suspend such a beautifully gridded timber soffit, come light walking surface above as this space was later to become, in this way. Mackintosh would have known this to be however a belt and braces approach so that the heavyweight of books could be accommodated too, even if it was to be beautifully stilted by a non-shrinkable variety of hardwood post and lintol.

    Should one or more fires strike again upon these authentically false floors, it could prove more expensive in the long run than inserting real concrete. Why put the library’s refit again at the mercy of fakery. Would Mackintosh have done this himself: dwelt upon such falsity, if concrete deregulation had been much sooner?

    The rebuilt library interior will inform what the expenses become - with or without correcting the floor make-up. Hopefully an assessment of the conservation cost differences between i) replication/s, and ii) alternative conservation methods that will help inform the decision making process; and that decent decisions will undoubtedly effect a much newer Conservation Plan that will supersede the original as we were told on the day.

    The architect may find itself repeating the original lessons should budgetary constraints once again predominate, which I’d imagine being a much more honest approach or excuse to replicate faithfully. A demand on correcting the library floor make-up as a necessary outlay would be one way of necessitating this excuse or cult (to reapply the cost-cutting engineering discovered).

    Through the help of the speakers we understand why such measures to save were necessary. Could we ever understand if another rung/tranche of executed conservation principles were to become muddled, e.g. ‘minimum intervention’ at the expense of ‘integrity’?

    It could be ironically that no budgetary deficiency, comparably this time around, will yield a cult of wanting to replicate/restore the budgetary elements for their own sake with or without the need to do so, precluding the re-architecting of solutions.

    This project needs the ideal, not disappearance, of a veritable architect who is neither cult driven nor protected in title (per se) through the devices of accreditation and registration respectively.

    The total work of art is an architecture product and therefore needs an architectural understanding in response not an architect’s hand per se, unless that hand knows how to draw etc. Registered architects in the UK are – as history will tell us – not always of this breed. It is more possible that the hand of such an elusive architect would be found outside of the UK architects register, no offence, but it’s how Mackintosh was himself too. Our best aren’t hiding behind a regulatory register of architects; they’re facilitating it as Mackintosh had done. They are more likely to be outcast IMHO!

    If a debate for deciding upon a ‘true or false’ homogeneous concrete compartmentation of the floor/s below the library, particularly the library’s floor itself, is registered or indeed calls in due course if it hasn’t already, will a justifiable answer be given. My guess is that the question won’t even be acknowledged.

    It may fall upon deaf ears. Unchallenged conservation principles may be permitted (go unabated) to be effected on an elite basis via ignorance, ergo the present day ignoratio elenchi to be precise.

    The authenticity of fakery is best retained for the lecture theatre soffit on the floor below, where best to have the live record that it was ever considered and used: yes, in a think tank well below the critical area that indeed calls for the real McCoy, the top half of the vertical compartment that is well expressed on the west gable exterior...

    To retain it – via ‘minimal intervention’ – for the floor above in which the library sits is surely playing with fire whilst re-designers are waiting in the wings vis a vis opposing sympathies and dogmas that may not always be inclined towards restoration, the recent controversies being a case in point. Even a renowned conservation architect, much earlier on, had declared favour for a reinterpreted Library design let alone Alan, who’d be expected to.

    If a restored fake soffit, and/or a cloned exposed soffit for the intermediate floor below the library is preferred at the end of the day, it needs greater thought than this, that’s not to say that gadgetry and/or alternative materials would be insufficient at keeping a fire at bay before emergency services could arrive to save lives, but it could jeopardise the other battle, which is to save the building that has to have that ideally greater level of compartmentation to which Mackintosh as best as possible attempted to pinpoint for the library floor and immediate floors below with, which I reiterate time and time (thread and thread) again, in a way, rightly, like no other compartment in the building. Hence my veritable essays on the pre-ordained conservation of the library itself, which it all points towards. Conventional fire-engineering upgrades also might not be that architectonically faithful to the original unless out of bounds/sight, which isn’t an option, especially around the floor below the library that has become the warren as opposed to part of the ‘360 degree aspect’ space it was meant to be (as a relatively open plan architecture dept.).

    Ignoring Mackintosh’s ‘preordained conservation distinctions’ in favour for a conventionally fire-engineered upgrade, which will be life-safety first before the need to be building-conservation related per se (excruciatingly true if a faith for fakery is to be taken too far and mitigated against via ‘integrity-less’ types of fire protection) will be less faithful to Mackintosh than for instance nullifying the want (not need) to budget with softwood rather than hardwoods, as sentimentally tempting as that relatively minor faith will be to repeat.

    Sentiment has to also go beyond the ‘material’ to find faiths in ‘philosophies’ too. I won’t be alone there as I’m sure the world of architectural thought, study, or even industry, will have arrived at such conclusions too if given the time.

    Back to the panel presentation:

    The panel very healthily did recognise the pressing matter of ‘use’ and ‘change/s’ and how such had informed the resultant building and where it might be going. All very good to hear, given the controversies that end in threads like the one I’m now writing in!

    Consider these two different time scenarios for a moment:

    T1) If the fire had been during the 1990s at the height of the buzzword ‘adaptable’ and if the compromised precious datum of the library’s failed through bad luck in its fakery, then this would probably have established a debate for redesign. Thank goodness that this dogma is now best kept for new architecture rather than always to architectural conservation too.

    As at present, redesign luckily doesn’t bear any weight other than to, in that little amount in the grander scheme of things, perhaps justly provide an actual rather than fake concrete soffit below the library. The Lecture Theatre’s false concrete soffit, a further floor below, should aptly remain faked by all means and as discussed above. It has a single aspect, often curtained over to dim, rather than the vibrant aspects above that would wet re-designers appetite to fully reinterpret, and therefore this lower space will be less threatened from reinterpretation and can, therefore comparably, comfortably wallow in its cool, and much more suitable, retainable fakery.

    The Historic Scotland speaker on the day at the panel was at hand to disseminate how Mackintosh really built it as opposed to what we see in the 1910 as-built drawings, but can we confide that successors will have the same approach and understanding, when dissemination is called for again in the future, especially if we don’t make sense of the conservation principles that Mackintosh has originally implied should take precedence? There’s a lot going on that’s rubbishing our culture quickly these days, and the conservation tact for this job might fall into this category if the panel and teams chosen should decide to allow/fuel a deviation from a Mackintosh sensibility.

    Simply replicating like-for-like won’t offer even the slightest glimmer of that sensibility, and a glimmer is thankfully all that’s required as the great man has already done most of the work for us.

    A future team, confused by today’s measures, may prefer to take the tact that Mackintosh was from a bygone time and level of thinking, and not bother to take the trouble to understand the actual design or finished product: that it’s of a timelessly sophisticated brand despite any of the Art Nouveau and the anticipated Modernist and Brutalist tendencies.

    It will become like any other building, a mortal (like Superman for a moment in his early 1980s sequel), and there’d be no turning back - lost Kryptonite that fell through the net - unless an enthusiast would be willing to wade through all of my spiel to extract where the fruits of a ‘reversibility’ might be discovered. ‘Reversibility’ being another conservation principle that may have to take major precedence if this job is botched up, made temporarily mortal.

    T2) Conversely, If this fire had been even earlier, e.g. during the 1960s/70s at the height of brutalism and likewise if the compromised precious datum of the library’s had failed through bad luck in its fakery, and additionally if we were in Canada rather than the UK at that, then I wouldn’t be having to write any of this spiel because it would all incidentally be the cultural way of thinking at the time: to not fear reinforcing the Brutalist-like aspects.

    However, they’d go too far. They’d even clone the building’s 1897 timber/steel soffits with the widespread ‘concrete modernist style’ soffits originally anticipated for the west 1909 extension; and they’d replace the fakery where it does no harm and would be better kept as a record (e.g. within the lecture theatre).

    1910 ‘as-built’ drawings at section C show an error in that even Mackintosh on site has appeared to proliferate a concrete-modern style cloning for the entire upper main studios’ stretch, west to east.

    Hopefully my recommendation to concrete these top level encasements, as discussed above, will be taken on board naturally without the need for my commentary. Again, it may take a 60s brain if not a true Mackintosh enthusiast to push for it: an expense that will be in a superior lives-saving fire engineering strategy – the last thing we want failing are the beams that support the actual concretes slab locations (high up on the top floor).

    Judging by the presentation 5 mornings ago, there’s been a great start from the team, so far, which had recently put to bed the idea of a redesigned refit of the library despite industry (come some academic) pressure, confirming this after the shortlisted candidates were well into their schemes.

    Well done GSA! The last thing that this project needs is the ‘know it all’ stars that’ll be happy to be awarded for their untroubled oblivion.

    CHAPTER 3

    I forgot what I was going to say now, doh!

    Let’s say that this veritable essay and any follow ups (on the public drawings front if and when made available for comment) will be the veritable left behind slither of Kryptonite should a botch up ensue and a search for reversals be called to make the masterpiece once again immortal.

    An essay that I am afraid I will not be editing or proofing tonight!

    Commented on: 2015-04-21T21:11:46.313

    Mackintosh library before the fire

    Replication is never the right thing to do


  • I was there on the audience side of the panel as my photographs will show at http://photos.kevinscotttoner.co.uk/#!album-112

    Alan’s argument seems to be getting thinner as it goes along. Soon there’ll be nothing left to debate.

    The one time that he does compromise, as quoted at “There are many arguments for restoring the Mackintosh library but there is regrettably...” erroneously regarding the extent of loss, is when he’s failed to acknowledge that the most important element is still, yet amazingly, intact.

    Yes, that of the timber set datum, which luckily survived despite not being made from the concrete it faked to be.

    I’m now going to repeat my own discourse on this and apologise if it’s all been written about before.

    I refrained from raising these thoughts on the day as the panel already seemed to be speaking the same language. An expert would probably arrive at similar conclusions, but not all, due to the many differences in background, education, opinion, ethics and allegiances etc., which all seems oddly muddled up here from what’s usually expected, more later, as Q&A unfolded.

    Instead of questioning the findings from the surviving timber floor (as yet) the panel instead dwelt on the findings from the charred timber post construction, which revealed a different kind of fakery: of softwood engineered to resemble the character and appearance of oak, which possibly unlike the fakery of the library floor (and those also luckily intact below it) was likely to have been entirely cost driven, perhaps. The beams required for the library floor were perhaps designed too early to be considered as a deregulated (pre-Code of Practice) element.

    A real [preCoP] reinforced concrete floor and exposed soffit, like so many others shown off eventually in late modernism if not well beforehand in the industrial archaeology of e.g. grain silos would have ironically been also cheaper to my mind as well as truly protective (both aesthetically and characteristically) than the contrivance of fakery, which the architect appears set to ignore going on his answer to the fakery (on price) regarding the charred structural posts


    (many like Perret and Mendelsohn for instance did seem to get a chance to do the real - not fake - RC soffits between this turn of the century archaeology and as we see much later in brutalism),

    I suppose it stands to reason that it was indeed a preCop concrete that was applied by the 2nd phase, i.e. to cap the clerestory level and incidentally/fortunately the library core volume, given the presence of ironwork designed in conjunction.

    However that visually worked in conjunction with the studios, i.e. where Expamet didn’t take precedence over the actual main structure of wood and steel, but in the faked context for the library core volume where all of the beams holding the library floor or the floors below are preferred to be guised as part of a faked homogeneous reinforced concrete beams/soffit slab, i.e. as fire-protected from ‘spread-of-flame and insulation’ as possible via Expamet, and naturally ‘structurally’ to a degree via timber. This would however be at the expense of the protective element known as ‘integrity’.

    The team rightly pointed out that the 1910 as-built drawings were hardly adjusted to reflect the constructional/architectonic changes that Mackintosh stood over during the build, and so, hence the Expamet cladding shown on almost every beam in the school when this was instead isolated/executed for the library related volume alone. This was definitely one the clearly apparent changes – from 1910 ‘as-built’ drawings – that I can vouch for as a previous student although there are no images that I can find online to prove this (that the studios’ structure wasn’t disguised by the Expamet solution that guarded the library as best as possible, but instead celebrated to the studio occupants). A speaker indeed confirmed not to take the 1910 drawings as gospel...

    Although there is no online photographic proof of the studios’ soffits, a quick peek into the intact studios will show them, or presumably, a browse through the new winning architects ‘room by room’ documentation, which accounts for over 200 spaces, i.e. the concertinaed presentation on the panel’s table on one two of my photos. In fact, have a look at Steven Holl’s concept/contextual observation sketches, which already asserts that the Mac’s studios skeleton was indeed solely wood and steel.

    The speaker had indeed explained/confirmed this fakery via the availability of Expamet at the time, which could mimic actual concrete and that it was indeed widely applied below the library, which as some will know was built on the cusp of reinforced concrete being deregulated along with the launch of a Code of Practice initiated by the RIBA to prove it.

    Therefore the remaining library core floors would therefore not in fact have the properties or actual character of true reinforced concrete (as timber can’t char forever once the thin inert layer of Expamet is breached no matter how well the like Expamet protected, supporting, iron or steel would fare).

    I hope ‘a bottom line’ in all of this will be taken seriously, at least for debate: that this (alarmingly sacrificial) datum to have luckily remained unscathed in the layers below the library (the former architecture dept floor - come the once proposed library annex prior to the Bourdon library addition - as a speaker from the event has told us) has the ‘appearance’ of being set in concrete, as applies even in the lecture theatre below that too, but not the true ‘character’ of it; and that by restoring what little of this has been damaged, miraculously, would be a wasted opportunity to secure the datums’ future through providing a real McCoy, rather than fake, brutalist-style soffit.

    The reason I guard this concept so strongly on the protection of the datum to which all of the designed fitting out and furniture was set is because without it being set in stone would allow the very vultures to which Alan speaks or recommends to come swooping down to fit out the vertical library core (a tall full building height shaft) in another way from the way envisioned by Mackintosh: as a total work of art and ergo one that’s almost a kind of preordained conservation in the way it has differentiated/implied the level of protection to go between the studios and the library end, and as best as it can given the knowledge and technology at hand.

    At least one speaker tried to disseminate the difference between ‘integrity’ and ‘authenticity’, which are international conservation principles, a tough job for the same reasons that some of the comments above have mentioned.

    Perhaps it was to philosophically pepper the argument/debate of the winning architect’s document. The architect wasn’t for budging on the re-budgeting for a more expensive oak for the new structural posts as opposed to the ingenious [perhaps sentimental] faked equivalent that hadn’t been discovered until the fire.

    How romantic will this same architect be over the fake floors that have conversely survived with no need to conserve unless there’s another fire?

    Should the client (or a panel) step in to guide the architect off a reluctance for that conservation principle aliased as ‘integrity’, not forgetting fire integrity too; and could those suggestions come from the panel advisory body given that such figures on it would be given their books for suggesting such a thing (supposed unnecessary overhaul).

    But that’s what I’m detecting : the architect is playing the conservationist and the vice versa the are playin designer, or can’t because not permitted.......

    Commented on: 2015-04-19T12:13:39.457

    Mackintosh library before the fire

    Replication is never the right thing to do

  • Pluralise ‘prize’ and it may read the perfect headline.

    Extending the reach could mean making a prize available to a further pupil year: two for the price of one.

    “...good planning and design can have a positive effect on people and places...”. This is streamlined thinking; yes even more streamlined than the concept of the acronym PLACE to which we have the Farrells also to thank, but is streamlined enough to engage kids?

    Exploring vice versa differences and values (e.g. “...’good’ [people/places] can have a ‘positive’ effect on [planning/design]...”; “...[bad] ‘planning/design’ can have a [negative] effect on ‘people/places’...”; etc., mathematicians would say there’d be 48 minimum permutations in all) could raise some interesting areas for debate/study, especially in the UK where things are never so clear cut.

    To really pare down (refine) the list in order to arrive at fewer permutations, we must firstly simply say/believe that ‘architecture’ and ‘people’ illustrate ‘culture’ (i.e. the tangible and intangible of culture). We can then more complexly examine ‘the good &/or bad and their positive &/or negative effects’ with less dogma, myopia, stigma, confusion, etc. given the neutrality to be had emanating from loose mathematical truths. UNESCO has made a head start in telling us that there’s two kinds of Cultural heritage ergo the tangible and intangible varieties – it’s not all me that’s making the point or driving it home.

    Get the skeleton of the question correct before asking the kids to make the effort.

    By splitting up these two fundamental essences into separate chambers (or silos) we risk losing our core understanding, not necessarily core values, of culture.

    That’s no criticism aimed at the Farrells, they’ve started the ball rolling well.

    The first that’ll tell you that everything from the ground to skyline or sea to the horizon etc. is ‘architecture’ isn’t in fact architects themselves (architects would prefer to use the word environment whether ‘built’ or ‘natural’).

    It’s rather writers in literature that will say so. Synonymously speaking, ‘architecture/characters’ frequent every story as ‘ingredients’ frequent every recipe. The concept, politics, setting, time, geography, etc. are all of the variable/secondary notions of a story; architecture encompassing materials and place whether natural, engineering, archaeological, even architectural proper, etc.; and characters encompassing people.

    ‘Architecture’ has become the choice of overarching word in literature as it has also become in the software world.

    Our society (western culture) chooses its words carefully and it knows or likes to confide in perhaps the ideology of ‘architecture’ as to what describes what’s in counterpoint to character/s. Engineering is another such word borrowed figuratively, but through to 1000s of varieties: sound, bio, social, etc. not merely one or two to which architecture pertains.

    If ‘architecture’ is the continuum/result of PLACE (coincidentally at the middle letter of professions acronym) or notion as our culture through literature would tell us, then why not confide in this. The professions then instead proceed to silo themselves, as I’ve hinted at before over the years, so badly that they clash together and make idiocies of themselves in their brandings or pigeon holes.

    One of my examples in the past (also on BD and LinkedIn too) without responses (what’s new) was to make use of Conservation Area legislation to help protect new architecture from being botched up. However, CAs are thought to be the confines of the Conservation Officer and historicism even although the wording “an area of special architectural OR historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance” would imply otherwise, as it would ought to. I imagined head-scratching amongst the elite who were prompting the article in respect of protecting new work.

    Perhaps the next generation will notice the spelled out “OR” above as this one, the present one, yet doesn’t.

    Therefore PLACE begins to be a valid metaphor/acronym provided the professions really begin to understand that ‘architecture’ - not being the middle letter for nothing - is also at the helm symbolically of the tangible side of our culture.

    It’s a sad day when for example literature, rather than architecture itself via a profession, has to remind us via hints of the fundamental or central importance that architecture has above all else: to people.

    The latest architects’ code of conduct being less inclined towards society’s good in favour for the ‘customer/client is king’ approach of consumerism - in the UK in particular, but not quite so dispensed of as yet in the US - is not going to help society restore its confidence in the architects that it’s helping to stray. Society has got itself too deep into the profession of architecture and this looks set to continue as a formula that’s getting worse with time via the channelling of 1000s of architects onto the register each year that’s about to become officially unabated if the recent BD threads on architectural education reform are correct.

    A very telling irony is that of any one particular profession representing the PLACE acronym; it is not the ‘Architecture’ one that’s doing the best in bringing society (place/people) its story of architecture. It’s probably the last of the 5 professions listed doing so!

    Good luck to the potential winners of the prizes!

    -

    ps Give me a call if a ton-to-grand per hour rate is not too pricey in which to help judge. Apologies for the rambling without editing!

    Commented on: 2015-04-08T15:55:34.363

    Farrells student prize

    Farrells launches schools prize

  • @SomeoneStoleMyNick,

    I admit a few typos from not editing my writing, but apologised for this at the final sentence, which you may not have got to.

    You're also almost entirely correct RE syntactically. I’m assuming that you've assumed that my reference on intending to post this both a) elsewhere; and b) here on this post has led you to such a conclusion.

    Yes, it’s seemed odd or careless in doing this, but nevertheless it was very true that I wanted to post the same messages on what I thought, originally, was one thread as follows.

    Initially looking at the case history titles on the intermediate post on the subject, I saw that there was merely the latest article and therefore I wrongly assumed that I was writing - not merely in reply to a commenter - in: 1) referencing ‘inclusive’, which was a word that was in fact not repeated by Gostler (such a same); and 2) referencing a previous comment, which I thought would’ve been hiding in page 1 due to the default sectioning off per every 10 comments.

    I went on to additionally confuse myself by replying on the latest post by accident. If you hadn’t noticed, half way through my reply, I started to refer more to the latest post than the reply post, for whatever reason: possibly because of having to, somewhere in-between, sift through so much verbiage and transfer/type onto a Word.doc format rather than use the given page text box.

    All a recipe for syntactical dubiety, apologies for that too, as that won’t be too apparent since I’d edited/reworded the initial writing so that it would apply to, this, the antepenultimate post focussing on the same topic.

    Again, it didn’t help me that there’s was no cross-references back to this particular post (on the case history titles) ergo the post bearing that most important of words (to my case) that’s in fact failed to be re-cited on the next two follow-up posts, the word “inclusive”.

    That particular word does in fact do justice to the larger than life title despite many of us, me included, mentioning the fact that the said ‘reformed course content’ isn’t really evolving per se.

    Hence I trust that, this, the launching article has been either: 1) viewed as a little too criticised to gain a ‘cross-referenced articles’ tagging; and/or 2) too political to have used the, now excluded, “inclusive” word.

    Yes the most important word in the article and topic.

    Why hide it now? We can be proud instead of ashamed of progress. Let’s see the pivotal word, “inclusive”, be aired more often as that’s what the reform is largely about. All the while we’ve been led into thinking it’s a race thing, a gender thing, etc. Quite simply not the case, it’s been a societal thing; one I’m neither here nor there with provided my career stays on track. I can’t rest my laurels for too long on extra-curricular development. Architects will need to start hiring me again on a more regular basis or allow me to set up on my own as an architect.

    Excluding the excluded is no way for a profession, that’s now heralding inclusivity, to treat those who best service it, i.e. the talented assistant.

    Maybe I could indeed assist the Education Secretary, I’m probably the most ‘been seen and done it’ understudy or pre-architect there’s ever likely to be in my own generation whose intent is work before chasing/demanding the right of qualification accolades. I may have a few pointers as a balanced all-rounder academically, practically, professionally, institutionally, and maybe even societally as far as helping out on panels, committees, etc. has went. That said, with merely 11 years of practical, to date, I’m very apprehensive of bulking up my other sides too much. Too much will be if I go beyond equating it. Pedagogically, I’m zilch except for when I’ve educated through forum, panel, networking, etc., but this is far too little output compared to what I might be able to do in a class environment. It’s maybe the one 6th of my career path that will never see the light of day compared with the other 5/6ths above (as listed in roughly chronological order and not in priority per se). Conversely it might be the latter sides (as pursuits/priorities) that’ll eventually more than equate, but will depend on whether or not I’d prove to be as effective with these as I’ve been in my former pursuits/priorities to date...

    Back to the plot, I’ve wrote a few times before that I’ve been quite happy to hide my qualification letters until such times the architect wants to charge the client for my services as an architect rather than as an assistant. Anyway, another thing is that one is at best simply a cog in the machine. Does this really warrant letters after one’s name, asking oneself, especially where one hasn’t become that elusive lone architectural genius: the subject of the last month’s RIBAJ editorial?

    So far so good though without the letters! It does entail having less esteem, but I make up for it by responding to the dross that can crop up on threads like this. It also being a ‘between jobs’ affair, I admit, so far. This for me is when esteem needs found most and it’s great to know that there’s no shortage of dross out there in which one can equalise from in ones letter-less (not unqualified) insecurities.

    [Oops, babbling on and it’s a Saturday Night! Queen’s 75 xmas-eve concert is on iPlayer for 6 hours yet. I can’t believe nearly 4 decades have passed since I was last captivated by it. I shall now go there to enjoy again, fantastic stuff!]

  • [bd : please remove my semi-duplicate comment - this hadn't apparently been actually posted - an IT glitch - as I reworded for my 2nd attempt as follows. Apologies for inconvience]

    Further to my point on ‘balance’ why am I continually alone in making such points without response/acknowledgement? These points are eventually ending up at the helm of evolving institutional policy/development, not that I’m being acknowledged or paid for the effort, rather the reverse as a victim from non-inclusivity...

    [I’m reposting the following text from another related follow-up article to this, the latest on the forum, as I’d meant to post it here as a follow up to my earlier comment, but felt the need to respond to some of the anti-thread comments from the uniformed being willy nilly cast without correction.

    So here goes as follows. (pasted from : http://www.bdonline.co.uk/comment/opinion/practices-must-play-their-part-%E2%80%93-or-education-reform-will-fail/5074675.article - oops wrong again should’ve been posted here in response to a commenter: http://www.bdonline.co.uk/comment/opinion/what-the-ribas-changes-on-education-mean-for-students/5074651.article?MsgId=2048284#MsgId_2048284 ]

    -

    The elongation that I originally mentioned from extending PPE rather than limiting Studio would be more along the lines of the US where to be licensed as an architect the ratio is more likely to be 5:5 or will be shortly as the US tries to chop some years off (the standard time to qualify for licence has reduced from 14 to 11 years, so they’re not quite down to the 10 years that we like to claim is our average in the UK albeit 5:2 being quite common amongst the 1000s per annum that go through the registration gate unabated via family connection or whatever societal deal/privilege).

    5:5 is probably indeed the key to the said balance, which would mean that the minimal time to register as an architect, without conning society that it might be anything less, would be ergo the 10 years that presents our much safer, to believe, average.

    Whilst (e.g.) the US has a Decadal approach to registration, the closest that the UK has come to being equally decadal has been the course via the part time (day-release) route, which used to be 8 years, now reduced to 7 in line with the full-time route (as I suspect due to the architectural 2nd degrees being reduced down to common MSc (masters) standards. ps The best thing institutes could do IMO in the light of this education-institutional change is for the schools to drop the M from Arch and proceed with the BArch so that architecture remains as a higher academic profile on universities’ rosters.

    Bringing architecture down to ‘masters’ level is simply an excuse to limit the years (to qualify) down to seven via 1 fewer year of Studio!

    Remember that the current double degree/diploma ‘BArch(or MArch depending school preference) DipArch’ is simply a more aloof way of saying the old 5 year BArch standard, which is still the top international qualification (notwithstanding certain countries schools, like here, often replacing the B with an M for greater esteem amongst sister university subjects, when it is actually a debasement).

    You’re not going to like this, but my route was actually upon a 7-year version, not 5, where I bridged my dissertation into the 2nd degree by declining honours and thereby extending my 2nd degree by 1 year i.e. having billed myself for an extra year in the 1st degree.

    Call me a genius if you like, as probably the most qualified in the UK, albeit accidentally: honestly I wasn’t trying to get 1 year over on some countries who have naturally went for 6–year studio option for their MArch’s, which is a better way of earning a higher accolade than the BArch, which is already (at least) a master level without saying so.

    In conclusion, whilst 5:5 would seem to be the ideal ratio for Studio/PPE,, I would suggest that this be 5:4 if not 5:3, which the US are trying to claim as a minimum – the minimum can work, but it must be via work not social connection/exclusivity has our 5:2 in the UK has proven to date.

    Am I fan then of the proposed partial reform to 4:3 from 5:2 ergo an optional reform.

    Yes and no. I’ve stated why not (balance should be about rounding PPE up not Studio down), but haven’t yet mentioned why yes.

    Yes because of that one word flashing out after having, personally so far, saw it through a never-ending eclipse (well for me anyway to date), and that one word is the word “Inclusive”.

    Inclusivity, I suppose having started out from a socially unconnected background, was something that wasn’t in my psyche until after the recession struck twice (i.e. in 2008). I was quite happy to provide architectural services, even becoming professional at it via freelance agency work, under the label of architectural assistant etc. until such times a practice would want to claim a few more £/ph from clients from my work ergo being the victim of my own success as projects do need assistants to do the graft (a nonetheless very happy place for me to be despite less pay) ergo loving ones’ work.

    Inclusivity is pivotal for me now during recession so that I can work as an architect in my own right, but because of gate restriction from present PPE I can’t do this (I’m glad it’s being proposed to change).

    I think the practices will warm to it: my own exclusion has not been one of vexation as such (as it sounds). It’s been an exclusivity ironically driven by my own calibre.

    If I was a business hiring myself to charge clients £hr of architectural services, I would want me to be an assistant. If I didn’t have the talent, but business acumen, I would want someone else to do the graft.

    My curse, in respect of inclusivity, has therefore been that UK practice has had too much business acumen, a good thing that no one complain with, including me.

    I hope this continues, but as one commenter as asked, without getting answers, where would this partial reform leave those who, like me, are in the midst between exclusion/inclusion?

    [Apologies as unedited (AaU)!]

  • [accidentally posted this on the latest related article. Apologies BD although still related to the topic, as it was initially meant to be posted on this article.]

    Clive, I don't know what school you obtained your architectural qualifications, but going on past experience, at mines, you will or should have been educated to a far more thorough level than via general practice if you were really intent on your studies/ambitions.

    My own experience is that I started off in the most professional of practices largely before going full-time into my 1st degree, or so I thought when a lecturer pointed out that I’d been luckily in the right place to learn about practice, but even at that I can vouch that a decent solely-practice education would put one at greater risk of becoming deficient in all of the facets that you mention and more, arguably more so than being at a decent educational institution could do.

    I’ve made the point before that balance is indeed great between each - hence the recent moves to exchange 1 studio studies year into PPE so that there’s a 4:3 ratio rather than 5:2 - but that it would be better elongated so as not to be at the expense of Studio, and why I should have to continually be alone in making such points without response/acknowledgement on the comment threads would be beyond anyone, bar those who can’t who’d rather fuel the mystification they harbour under (my points however eventually ending up being at the helm of evolving institutional policy/development, not that I’m being acknowledged or paid for my efforts, rather the reverse as a victim of anti-inclusivity).

    Back to my point, this elongation would be more along the lines of the US where to be licensed as an architect the ratio is more likely to be 5:5 or will be shortly as the US tries to chop some years off (the standard time to qualify for licence has reduced from 14 to 11 years, so they’re not quite down to the 10 years that we like to claim is our average in the UK albeit 5:2 being quite common amongst the 1000s per annum that go through the registration gate unabated via family connection or whatever societal deal/privilege).

    5:5 is probably indeed the key to the said balance, which would mean that the minimal time to register as an architect, without conning society that it might be anything less, would be ergo the 10 years that presents our much safer, to believe, average.

    Whilst (e.g.) the US has a Decadal approach to registration, the closest that the UK has come to being equally decadal has been the course via the part time (day-release) route, which used to be 8 years, now reduced to 7 in line with the full-time route (as I suspect due to the architectural 2nd degrees being reduced down to common MSc (masters) standards. ps The best thing institutes could do IMO in the light of this education-institutional change is for the schools to drop the M from Arch and proceed with the BArch so that architecture remains as a higher academic profile on universities’ rosters.

    Bringing architecture down to ‘masters’ level is simply an excuse to limit the years (to qualify) down to seven via 1 fewer year of Studio!

    Remember that the current double degree/diploma ‘BArch(or MArch depending school preference) DipArch’ is simply a more aloof way of saying the old 5 year BArch standard, which is still the top international qualification (notwithstanding certain countries schools, like here, often replacing the B with an M for greater esteem amongst sister university subjects, when it is actually a debasement).

    You’re not going to like this, but my route was actually upon a 7-year version, not 5, where I bridged my dissertation into the 2nd degree by declining honours and thereby extending my 2nd degree by 1 year i.e. having billed myself for an extra year in the 1st degree.

    Call me a genius if you like, as probably the most qualified in the UK, albeit accidentally: honestly I wasn’t trying to get 1 year over on some countries who have naturally went for 6–year studio option for their MArch’s, which is a better way of earning a higher accolade than the BArch, which is already (at least) a master level without saying so.

    In conclusion, whilst 5:5 would seem to be the ideal ratio for Studio/PPE,, I would suggest that this be 5:4 if not 5:3, which the US are trying to claim as a minimum – the minimum can work, but it must be via work not social connection/exclusivity has our 5:2 in the UK has proven to date.

    Am I fan then of the proposed partial reform to 4:3 from 5:2 ergo an optional reform.

    Yes and no. I’ve stated why not (balance should be about rounding PPE up not Studio down), but haven’t yet mentioned why yes.

    Yes because of that one word flashing out after having, personally so far, saw it through a never-ending eclipse (well for me anyway to date), and that one word is the word “Inclusive”.

    Inclusivity, I suppose having started out from a socially unconnected background, was something that wasn’t in my psyche until after the recession struck twice (i.e. in 2008). I was quite happy to provide architectural services, even becoming professional at it via freelance agency work, under the label of architectural assistant etc. until such times a practice would want to claim a few more £/ph from clients from my work ergo being the victim of my own success as projects do need assistants to do the graft (a nonetheless very happy place for me to be despite less pay) ergo loving ones’ work.

    Inclusivity is pivotal for me now during recession so that I can work as an architect in my own right, but because of gate restriction from present PPE I can’t do this (I’m glad it’s being proposed to change).

    I think the practices will warm to it: my own exclusion has not been one of vexation as such (as it sounds). It’s been an exclusivity ironically driven by my own calibre.

    If I was a business hiring myself to charge clients £hr of architectural services, I would want me to be an assistant. If I didn’t have the talent, but business acumen, I would want someone else to do the graft.

    My curse, in respect of inclusivity, has therefore been that UK practice has had too much business acumen, a good thing that no one complain with, including me.

    I hope this continues, but as one commenter as asked, without getting answers, where would this partial reform leave those who, like me, are in the midst between exclusion/inclusion?

    [Apologies as unedited (AaU)!]

    Commented on: 2015-04-04T12:21:16.817

    Polyark III students

    What the RIBA's changes on education mean for students

  • Clive, I don't know what school you obtained your architectural qualifications, but going on past experience, at mines, you will or should have been educated to a far more thorough level than via general practice if you were really intent on your studies/ambitions.

    My own experience is that I started off in the most professional of practices largely before going full-time into my 1st degree, or so I thought when a lecturer pointed out that I’d been luckily in the right place to learn about practice, but even at that I can vouch that a decent solely-practice education would put one at greater risk of becoming deficient in all of the facets that you mention and more, arguably more so than being at a decent educational institution could do.

    I’ve made the point before that balance is indeed great between each - hence the recent moves to exchange 1 studio studies year into PPE so that there’s a 4:3 ratio rather than 5:2 - but that it would be better elongated so as not to be at the expense of Studio, and why I should have to continually be alone in making such points without response/acknowledgement on the comment threads would be beyond anyone, bar those who can’t who’d rather fuel the mystification they harbour under (my points however eventually ending up being at the helm of evolving institutional policy/development, not that I’m being acknowledged or paid for my efforts, rather the reverse as a victim of anti-inclusivity).

    Back to my point, this elongation would be more along the lines of the US where to be licensed as an architect the ratio is more likely to be 5:5 or will be shortly as the US tries to chop some years off (the standard time to qualify for licence has reduced from 14 to 11 years, so they’re not quite down to the 10 years that we like to claim is our average in the UK albeit 5:2 being quite common amongst the 1000s per annum that go through the registration gate unabated via family connection or whatever societal deal/privilege).

    5:5 is probably indeed the key to the said balance, which would mean that the minimal time to register as an architect, without conning society that it might be anything less, would be ergo the 10 years that presents our much safer, to believe, average.

    Whilst (e.g.) the US has a Decadal approach to registration, the closest that the UK has come to being equally decadal has been the course via the part time (day-release) route, which used to be 8 years, now reduced to 7 in line with the full-time route (as I suspect due to the architectural 2nd degrees being reduced down to common MSc (masters) standards. ps The best thing institutes could do IMO in the light of this education-institutional change is for the schools to drop the M from Arch and proceed with the BArch so that architecture remains as a higher academic profile on universities’ rosters.

    Bringing architecture down to ‘masters’ level is simply an excuse to limit the years (to qualify) down to seven via 1 fewer year of Studio!

    Remember that the current double degree/diploma ‘BArch(or MArch depending school preference) DipArch’ is simply a more aloof way of saying the old 5 year BArch standard, which is still the top international qualification (notwithstanding certain countries schools, like here, often replacing the B with an M for greater esteem amongst sister university subjects, when it is actually a debasement).

    You’re not going to like this, but my route was actually upon a 7-year version, not 5, where I bridged my dissertation into the 2nd degree by declining honours and thereby extending my 2nd degree by 1 year i.e. having billed myself for an extra year in the 1st degree.

    Call me a genius if you like, as probably the most qualified in the UK, albeit accidentally: honestly I wasn’t trying to get 1 year over on some countries who have naturally went for 6–year studio option for their MArch’s, which is a better way of earning a higher accolade than the BArch, which is already (at least) a master level without saying so.

    In conclusion, whilst 5:5 would seem to be the ideal ratio for Studio/PPE,, I would suggest that this be 5:4 if not 5:3, which the US are trying to claim as a minimum – the minimum can work, but it must be via work not social connection/exclusivity has our 5:2 in the UK has proven to date.

    Am I fan then of the proposed partial reform to 4:3 from 5:2 ergo an optional reform.

    Yes and no. I’ve stated why not (balance should be about rounding PPE up not Studio down), but haven’t yet mentioned why yes.

    Yes because of that one word flashing out after having, personally so far, saw it through a never-ending eclipse (well for me anyway to date), and that one word is the word “Inclusive”.

    Inclusivity, I suppose having started out from a socially unconnected background, was something that wasn’t in my psyche until after the recession struck twice (i.e. in 2008). I was quite happy to provide architectural services, even becoming professional at it via freelance agency work, under the label of architectural assistant etc. until such times a practice would want to claim a few more £/ph from clients from my work ergo being the victim of my own success as projects do need assistants to do the graft (a nonetheless very happy place for me to be despite less pay) ergo loving ones’ work.

    Inclusivity is pivotal for me now during recession so that I can work as an architect in my own right, but because of gate restriction from present PPE I can’t do this (I’m glad it’s being proposed to change).

    I think the practices will warm to it: my own exclusion has not been one of vexation as such (as it sounds). It’s been an exclusivity ironically driven by my own calibre.

    If I was a business hiring myself to charge clients £hr of architectural services, I would want me to be an assistant. If I didn’t have the talent, but business acumen, I would want someone else to do the graft.

    My curse, in respect of inclusivity, has therefore been that UK practice has had too much business acumen, a good thing that no one complain with, including me.

    I hope this continues, but as one commenter as asked, without getting answers, where would this partial reform leave those who, like me, are in the midst between exclusion/inclusion?

    [Apologies as unedited (AaU)!]

  • Clive, I don't know what school you obtained your architectural qualifications, but going on past experience, at mines, you will or should have been educated to a far more thorough level than via general practice if you were really intent on your studies/ambitions.

    My own experience is that I started off in the most professional of practices largely before going full-time into my 1st degree, or so I thought when a lecturer pointed out that I’d been luckily in the right place to learn about practice, but even at that I can vouch that a decent solely-practice education would put one at greater risk of becoming deficient in all of the facets that you mention and more, arguably more so than being at a decent educational institution could do.

    I’ve made the point before that balance is indeed great between each - hence the recent moves to exchange 1 studio studies year into PPE so that there’s a 4:3 ratio rather than 5:2 - but that it would be better elongated so as not to be at the expense of Studio, and why I should have to continually be alone in making such points without response/acknowledgement on the comment threads would be beyond anyone, bar those who can’t who’d rather fuel the mystification they harbour under (my points however eventually ending up being at the helm of evolving institutional policy/development, not that I’m being acknowledged or paid for my efforts, rather the reverse as a victim of anti-inclusivity).

    Back to my point, this elongation would be more along the lines of the US where to be licensed as an architect the ratio is more likely to be 5:5 or will be shortly as the US tries to chop some years off (the standard time to qualify for licence has reduced from 14 to 11 years, so they’re not quite down to the 10 years that we like to claim is our average in the UK albeit 5:2 being quite common amongst the 1000s per annum that go through the registration gate unabated via family connection or whatever societal deal/privilege).

    5:5 is probably indeed the key to the said balance, which would mean that the minimal time to register as an architect, without conning society that it might be anything less, would be ergo the 10 years that presents our much safer, to believe, average.

    Whilst (e.g.) the US has a Decadal approach to registration, the closest that the UK has come to being equally decadal has been the course via the part time (day-release) route, which used to be 8 years, now reduced to 7 in line with the full-time route (as I suspect due to the architectural 2nd degrees being reduced down to common MSc (masters) standards. ps The best thing institutes could do IMO in the light of this education-institutional change is for the schools to drop the M from Arch and proceed with the BArch so that architecture remains as a higher academic profile on universities’ rosters.

    Bringing architecture down to ‘masters’ level is simply an excuse to limit the years (to qualify) down to seven via 1 fewer year of Studio!

    Remember that the current double degree/diploma ‘BArch(or MArch depending school preference) DipArch’ is simply a more aloof way of saying the old 5 year BArch standard, which is still the top international qualification (notwithstanding certain countries schools, like here, often replacing the B with an M for greater esteem amongst sister university subjects, when it is actually a debasement).

    You’re not going to like this, but my route was actually upon a 7-year version, not 5, where I bridged my dissertation into the 2nd degree by declining honours and thereby extending my 2nd degree by 1 year i.e. having billed myself for an extra year in the 1st degree.

    Call me a genius if you like, as probably the most qualified in the UK, albeit accidentally: honestly I wasn’t trying to get 1 year over on some countries who have naturally went for 6–year studio option for their MArch’s, which is a better way of earning a higher accolade than the BArch, which is already (at least) a master level without saying so.

    In conclusion, whilst 5:5 would seem to be the ideal ratio for Studio/PPE,, I would suggest that this be 5:4 if not 5:3, which the US are trying to claim as a minimum – the minimum can work, but it must be via work not social connection/exclusivity has our 5:2 in the UK has proven to date.

    Am I fan then of the proposed partial reform to 4:3 from 5:2 ergo an optional reform.

    Yes and no. I’ve stated why not (balance should be about rounding PPE up not Studio down), but haven’t yet mentioned why yes.

    Yes because of that one word flashing out after having, personally so far, saw it through a never-ending eclipse (well for me anyway to date), and that one word is the word “Inclusive”.

    Inclusivity, I suppose having started out from a socially unconnected background, was something that wasn’t in my psyche until after the recession struck twice (i.e. in 2008). I was quite happy to provide architectural services, even becoming professional at it via freelance agency work, under the label of architectural assistant etc. until such times a practice would want to claim a few more £/ph from clients from my work ergo being the victim of my own success as projects do need assistants to do the graft (a nonetheless very happy place for me to be despite less pay) ergo loving ones’ work.

    Inclusivity is pivotal for me now during recession so that I can work as an architect in my own right, but because of gate restriction from present PPE I can’t do this (I’m glad it’s being proposed to change).

    I think the practices will warm to it: my own exclusion has not been one of vexation as such (as it sounds). It’s been an exclusivity ironically driven by my own calibre.

    If I was a business hiring myself to charge clients £hr of architectural services, I would want me to be an assistant. If I didn’t have the talent, but business acumen, I would want someone else to do the graft.

    My curse, in respect of inclusivity, has therefore been that UK practice has had too much business acumen, a good thing that no one complain with, including me.

    I hope this continues, but as one commenter as asked, without getting answers, where would this partial reform leave those who, like me, are in the midst between exclusion/inclusion?

    [Apologies as unedited (AaU)!]

  • It looks like there will be two paths, one of which remains unchanged: 1) the 5+2 route, which I took and that did indeed, on the contrary to the article, introduce ‘professional practice’ as early as 2nd year; and 2) a newly packaged 4+3 route to introduce more balance.

    Balance is good, but because I’m bias perhaps, I can vouch that the balance might really be better struck further down the line (by finding as many academic years as possible before complimenting them with practice years) and even better still, perhaps, if extra-curricular experience can compliment this even further.

    I am fairly supra-balanced as of 2015!

    Here’s my [pre-architect] years breakdown as an assistant so far into: A) pre-undergrad practice : B) solely academic : C) post-grad practice (absorbing 2 years extracurricular in parallel) : D) solely extracurricular

    3.5 : 8 : 8 : 8.5

    An MSc specialism under my (already masters level) belt would help round me up towards an evenly distributed decades balance between ‘practice : study : extracurricular’.

    That’s 30+ years Vs the 7 years that most parents would hope for kids to aspire to.

    Who would you like to see most enter the architects register, someone with quadruple the normal level of qualification by any chance? If so give me a call ( 3 of 5 leads have disappeared recently ?)

  • ps, apology for the boring headline muses: I'm presuming no libraries books plight exists, although one wonders if it ever will, notwithstanding the Mac experiencing a current nominal shortage due to the fire, which is gradually being restored through donations.

    Extracted from the Herald of , "...Around 8,000 books and journals in the Mackintosh Library were also destroyed. However, almost 80 per cent of the rare book collection - which is kept in the main library in the Bourdon Building - survived. A 'priority replacement list' has been established, and around a quarter of that has already been donated..."

    URL http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/home-news/mackintosh-library-to-be-rebuilt-to-the-original-design-art-school-director-says-as-f.120554521

    Commented on: 2015-03-20T10:05:42.213

    Terry Farrell

    Farrell takes architects' jobs fight to government

  • Oh, it's back again! You could sware the moon passed in front on the sun a moment ago. Too many clouds in the way, but worth a bet!

    Maybe I can go for the RIBA Journal Assistant Editor post then, as announced today!

    OK, I'll dream on. Good luck to the post-holder, the editorial compliment streamlined one of my posts down from a page to a column to fit it among the other letters on the July/August 2011 issue, mispelled forename forgiven.

    Commented on: 2015-03-20T09:48:25.653

    Terry Farrell

    Farrell takes architects' jobs fight to government

  • Culture minister takes Libraries books plight with a pinch of salt [to eclipse crisis: where's the sun went, gosh?]

    Commented on: 2015-03-20T09:35:15.113

    Terry Farrell

    Farrell takes architects' jobs fight to government

  • I should write about one more possible attribute that Dublin in particular may have exuded as a city with a very strong Norse culture of note/origin and not merely that exuding a once prevalent royalism and relative lack of sectarianism - notwithstanding the nationalist cause against an historically much later and unrelated British or Norman rule.

    Let’s get off the politics for a moment, I hint at an architectural attribute in that, during Viking times, purer classical origins were probably introduced to the British Isles a lot sooner in Dublin than anywhere else.

    You won’t find this in Wikipedia, but Dublin courtesy of its Viking background (circa commencing the Dark Ages) probably got the best of both worlds when it came to the British Isles’ later adoption and comprehension of ancient classical architecture.

    Firstly, the longing to apprehend a sophisticated architecture is quite evident throughout the stone-age in Celtic countries, particularly in trilithons, which recalls pre-Egyptian Mesopotamian architectural techniques such as at the Göbekli Tepe as a circa 12,000 year old surviving exemplar...

    We all know that classicism eventually evolved from this in Greece and then was led by the Romans who’d advanced it by way too much as Laugier theorised and hence the Greek Revival period many centuries later. However as you know, until the Renaissance, classical architecture took a back seat for the Romanesque architecture of the Dark Ages; and battled with its successor (the Gothic) later.

    What my 18th Edition Banister Fletcher tells me is that the Norse probably introduced domestic building customs akin to that of - or derived from - Ancient Greek and Cretan cultures, and I’d concur. Dublin had become, much later, quite the haven for classicism compared with most British cities and this is presumably due to it having the aforementioned additional cultural backbone via the Norse/Danes Scandinavian link.

    The closest we get in Great Britain to such Viking settlement is in Orkney and the northern reaches of Scotland, but it can’t compare (with Dublin) as the equivalent dates would coincide with this area of Britain being predominantly Pictish ruled prior to the Scotland (as we know it) being set up a few centuries later, eventually, by Celtic and other British peoples. It could’ve so easily been the Romans beforehand!

    We as descendents of the British Isles may be obscuring whatever happened to the Pict and whoever they were in reality, perhaps in the same way that earlier British-Isles Norse culture (or Viking-Age) settlement is always taken as being barbaric and synonymous with invasion and the Norman conquest (notwithstanding the Normans being Norse in origin), which is probably mythical given the minute extent to which Viking settlement existed upon selected points on a seafaring rim across the north Atlantic: Dublin being one of very few...

    I once wrote (romanticised for all I know, in a previous comment) that perhaps the Vikings (as patrollers of the North Atlantic) helped emigrate the real Picts to Canada prior to ‘the Scotland as we know it’ being formed – not without the aforementioned possible unique traces being left upon the Scottish culture that we can detect today...

    How we trod soft on the land – Highland dance as opposed to Celtic step dance; and trod soft to a repetitive beat rather than stepdance/flamenco/etc. to help randomise a random beat;

    That, to me, starts to make more sense than what written history offers, i.e. Europeans fighting and settling over lands penultimately until the final take-over of the actual western continents!

    Commented on: 2014-09-22T22:44:15.490

    The deal between Holyrood and Westminster could be renegotiated with less cash going to Scotland

    Scottish architects launch pro-independence manifesto

  • Munter Roe, thanks for your sympathy. Thanks also for the ‘Jackeens’ reference as Google images can reveal this:-

    https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=jakeens&espv=2&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=qgz_U8CPL-Kv0QWB5YHYAw&ved=0CAcQ_AUoAg&biw=1920&bih=991#q=jackeens&spell=1&tbm=isch&facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=l_KaJ_UGfLGFYM%253A%3B5ISUXust_LNmRM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.prints-4-u.com%252Fstore%252Fimages%252FCCC0900%252FCCC0900104T.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.beoir.org%252Fcommunity%252Fviewtopic.php%253Ff%253D1%2526t%253D4268%3B1305%3B900

    Propaganda doesn’t really make sense, especially concerning any of the extended popularity of Royalty beyond British rule, particularly in Dublin.

    It seems that there was far more deadlier political propaganda surrounding union and independence that variously embroiled royalty , some of it probably dispelling that royalty was ever popular in Irish society; and labelling it as ‘British propaganda’ if ever contested generations later...

    Despite the strength of the political backlash against British rule or political union, Ireland never really lost their monarchy other than through constitution and presidency in 1949. It may have gone on longer via the commonwealth reform if the Republic was passed after rather than days before the ’49 London Declaration when India as a republic - whose flag is the Irish tricolour on its side - was accepted after independence, and even the period from 1937 onward is disputable too.

    I would wonder, if Scotland ever had 100 years of political division with the UK, if there’d be any royal motifs or emblems around at all let alone painted over in green, or rather purple as it were. So let me revisit my reply on this and a couple of other hypothetical questions if it were Scotland not Ireland in question, and put Scotland in Ireland’s shoes.

    For a truer assimilation, first I’d have to divide Scotland down the middle with, for talking’s sake, let’s say into:

    1) the east representing royalty and a newly independent nation separated from political and economic union with the UK after a successful xmas uprising despite resulting in an execution/s, indefinite tit for tat killings, a nationalist and civil war, etc. to get there (the east is where the first and last medieval Kings of Scotland were crowned, at Scone, and it’s where Holyroodhouse palace is as the latest of many – so it’s apt enough); and into

    2) the west who via a treaty have opted to remain in the UK. By comparison to the east there’s a [huge in this case] shortage of royal connections albeit no less where the Picts were crowned, at Govan, we are told, not that that should matter.

    So let’s say Edinburgh is Dublin’s equivalent and becomes a capital for the new independent country with its own orange, white and purple tricolour (to symbolise royalty together with the thistle or heather as opposed to clover); and Glasgow as Belfast’s equivalent .

    The east happily surrenders the St Andrews saltire to a loyalist Glasgow and the west so that the union jack and commonwealth flags remain unchanged. Not all of the west side is happy with this and protest and terror groups form etc. along with an increase in UK armed forces, police, etc. and where eventually peace becomes elusive indefinitely. The nationalist party has unfinished business there because it’s not yet free from the UK and it knows the west has voters who’d prefer independence. The Monarchy begins to become a target of hatred for those eventually rebelling and their supporters due to escalations. The flag they’d rather fly is the new Scottish tricolour, but because of increasing resentment on the head of state’s A) economy that it can never seem to vote out; & B) religious affiliation due to the Propaganda War it begins to vilify rather than admire, celebrate or glorify Scotland’s impressive connection with royalty. So much so that the rival football teams across from the west’s shore (also in the UK) have become embroiled too in probably establishing the world’s oldest and most important football fixture: team A’s colours are red white and blue; and team B’s as purple white and a dash of Orangey yellow. 50 years pass with no political change and team B’s new team and scarf colours have dropped the orangey yellow for a limited amount of primary yellow; with a hesitant reluctance to cheer with a Scottish tricolour (unless the primary orange has faded) since too primary an orange would bond too much with team A’s away colours. So successful is this games rivalry nationally, it too starts to colour its own nation with dreams of grandeur and joins in a nationalism that can’t wait to see the monarch and [probable friend] the pope do battle in the ring.

    Let’s now also say that the nationalist stance east is to then sympathise by downplaying, not denouncing outright, the connection with royalty despite that it doesn’t need to in the east due to being comfortably independent from the UK, i.e. with a grip over its preferred economy (and greater control over its [in this case never proven volatile] population numbers). Let’s also say that the independent side perchance loses rather than severs ties with the monarchy due to technicalities whilst not rushing to re-establish ties, which nonetheless appeases voters and supporters of the nationalists in the west.

    Now I can ask myself what would happen to the rich royal traditions if it were Scotland not Ireland who were to retreat from UK economic and political union, not that its nationalist want to really retreat from the former, but rather to help control it separately:-

    So back to your question!

    Q1) Would historical public utilities bother to preserve inherited historic regalia on all of its property or be happy to paint over them in purple with however many layers till eventually obscured – as by and large occurs with all ironfounders’ emblems.

    A1) Tricky, as preservation is a product of tourism and heritage as much as of traditional will and cherished royal associations. Emblematic preservation on iron doesn’t largely occur in respect of the historical ironfounders mark, so if the fictitious east were to lovingly preserve royal emblems on iron they’d have a tougher time trying to convince their western allies that it was for tourism and heritage rather than tradition, and so would probably do likewise – paint over & over. So, not really evidence of vexation per se!

    Q2) In terms of institutions, as the architectural one, would RIAS have purple corporate identity and lose ‘Royal’ in its title to help conciliate (or even influence) its political supporters in the east.

    A2) Most probably yes to both because historically none of its founding chapters had ‘royal’ as a prefix to start with anyway, which hasn’t been the case in the much more royally orientated Ireland. Acceptance that a monarchy’s base can’t be in two places at once is probably something that the Irish can sustain more than Scots...

    [So, as the Republic has continued to retain the ‘royal’ prefix albeit whilst using green for corporate identity, it puts tradition before politics or doesn’t discard each. What other institutions have done likewise; keeping or dispensing with symbology (colour or emblematic) and why? I’m presuming that royal prefixes remain because of the continued monarchy connection in the country - albeit I assume a much more arms’ length one since losing the Dublin Castle residence in 1922 - until arguably right up to 1949 and possibly beyond depending on how the politics will pan out through time.

    Because of national allegiances north, I think it would probably depend on disarmament and peace etc. in the north before a quite different economy as the Republic’s could begin to think about letting the queen [of a country that was willing to conscript decedents from the great famine] become a monarch there (via the aforementioned ’49 Declaration) particularly in respect of the sustained anti-British based resentment north, yes ironically where it’s more British economically, where it wants influence. Figures! Should things eventually settle and the Irish Republic joins the commonwealth later then it could become the case that Ireland has had no fewer monarchs than England since the 1600s despite its very long break away from the UK of late, thanks to Liz’s enthusiasm as one.

    Q3) Would Holyrood Palace likewise lose its official royal residence status and eventually become the president’s residence as had occurred with Dublin Castle.

    A3) Hardly comparable, or possible, as the former is the entirely occupied or maintained official residence for over the last 400 years, not a representative’s residence as was the latter over a shorter period! It would be inconceivable that any bred royal resentment in my fictitious west would be able to come between maintaining the tradition of a monarch’s residence of such lived-in age for a monarchy whose Scottish lineage or connections date back even earlier than the 1600s, i.e. unless it had particular reasoning beyond political and territorial causes or differences that would justify, alone, the expense of acquiring crown estates and/or not renting crown estates out.

    In Scotland, there hadn’t ever been a great famine followed by a conscription that bore no crisis, so what other plots movements or causes could this east sympathise with (or have in common with) worth denouncing monarchy in such a manner: a) historic independence wars if there weren’t an eventual merge with each opponents’ monarchies; b) Jacobitism abolitionism or colonialism; etc. if these weren’t centuries old?

    I conclude that the hypothesis is a rubbish one in that the UK has cleaned up its act up too much for Scotland to have an equal level of resentment within it as the Irish have had as above. The fictitious xmas-rising analogy above can neither make sense. The First Minister has admitted recently that the potential seizure of independence will fortunately be a peaceful one.

    I do however commend that, with the help of the hypothesis, we can assume that your assertions may be wrong.

    Over to you, you’re the expert. I concede that for the above, I’ve had to track back to Wikipedia a few times, but nevertheless surprised with myself that my earlier assumptions as a novice and guesser appear to regularly corroborate.

    [Ps I once didn’t ever use online for stating facts and assumptions and sometimes I still don’t (I’m alone on the ‘Scottish Red Man’ front so far) and I used to wait till I posted before apprehensively checking for online corroboration. Now I check before I post as I’ve been merely lucky for the first year of my comments. ]

    Commented on: 2014-08-29T10:16:52.847

    The deal between Holyrood and Westminster could be renegotiated with less cash going to Scotland

    Scottish architects launch pro-independence manifesto

  • Munter Roe, I see you haven’t bothered to find

    1) the photos that I’m talking about, which don’t lie: the Dubliners couldn’t have enough royalty, year on year, not decade by decade like the present UK, before the Republican cause; and

    2) peruse at least the cited publication where you would find that the Royal Institute of Architects in Ireland ran and still run Irish affairs and which formed a couple of years after the British equivalent. Someone else on the BD forum may be able to tell us when the 1901 Ulster Chapter switched its allegiance from the RIAI to the RIBA. I’ll guess at around the 1920s when RIAS coincidentally appears to have followed suit with a much less Royal amalgam of Chapters in Scotland. Great minds think alike!

    What may have caused the overlaying of green paint upon post box emblems, if it’s a negative thing, and for the built heritage to become veritable royalist archaeology relatively overnight, may have been A) the 1918 conscription crisis and the subsequent sealing of a republic and eventual partition during early inter-war times notwithstanding actual disconnection with the monarchy by late inter-war, even post-war, with merely the present monarch as one of too few out on a limb with her family’s one time greatest and ultimate fan, Ireland, notably Dublin; or bear in mind B) if it’s not vexation at all, but pride, as the royal architectural establishment RIAI are also proud to use green as their colours without dispensing with the prefix ‘Royal’. Maybe it’s a combination of each that favours keeping the orange more than green purely for flag duty. The dutch are already a hard act to follow on the orange front. The RoI could potentially be right behind them if they desired.

    I mention ‘A’ above because of something my granddad told me back in my teenage years, not directly related to Ireland, after a few Tennent’s Super at parties, “...you don’t die for your country, you live for it...” That was of course a reaction to Scotland’s national Anthem, “The flower of Scotland”.

    There’s a saying in Glasgow that ‘if someone told you to jump in the Clyde would you do it?’!

    Perhaps the Irish were not for dying on command, kings or no kings as heads of state or otherwise, particularly given the relatively recent history of the Irish Famine population graph (an upside down V in the Arial Narrow font).

    The Irish genius is in the offering of the Irish Saltire to the UK by developing a tricolour flag for its republic. That way the Irish remain part of the British Empire core (for its liking of the monarchy, hence the historical acceptance of orange on its new flag) despite withdrawal, i.e. in flag terms. That’s more than I can say for the Scottish Saltire, which has taken the scraps.

    The St Patrick saltire harmoniously ties with the St George X element of the UK flag, leaving some darker than sky blue in-between. St. Andrew’s saltire in Scottish use derives from a white cross being seen in the sky during a battle. One thinks ‘sky blue’ first rather than the darker blue version of the Union Jack (UJ) NZ, Australia, etc.; even the EU blue is closer as mentioned before...

    The UJ, what a mess: 1) Wales is represented via the St George X; 2) Ireland via the St Patrick’s X; and 3) the poor old St Andrew’s X fighting for the remains (the ‘left-overs’ that disappear when affixed)!

    If Scotland votes Yes, there’s one final thing that must be done or mandated for, flags-wise, to rid the Scottish saltire’s tenuous connection on the UJ and the UJ as an affix to other flags; and that’s to have commonwealth nations with red flags, e.g. Canada in particular if possible, bear the UJ affix on its top left corner but without the blue. One other final amendment would have to be the zooming out of the St George’s red striping; and the zooming in of the St Patrick’s red striping to simplify the heirarchy.

    However, this would entail a [perhaps slight] change of blueness on the full non-affixed UK UJ, not all the way to sky blue, but to EU blue, provided the UK wants to remain within the EU. Someone’s recently beat me to an EU intensive hybrid here https://ipcopy.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/gbeu-flag.jpg from the blog at https://ipcopy.wordpress.com/2014/06/

    Flags aside, there’s something lurking in all of this that’s nothing to do with empiricism/territorialism/chivalry/legend/religion/etc. The saltires are simply historical artefacts – not unlike the royal emblems maintained and strewn across the Republic of Ireland as you mention - as cultures unify and bind through time via various treaties, economic systems, and various other institutional relationships, etc.! (ps I think Robert Adam has now published research on what is Tradition and its role in modern society). Not to mention that the prices for such globalisation have ranged from strife, warfare, colonialism, slavery, etc. through to the peacefully intended setting up of conservation reserves as 1) live tokens of tradition via, possibly enforced forms of, sanctuary; and/or 2) e.g what’s now left of the American continents’ aboriginal peoples brought close to extinction via too much genocide.

    What’s too much might be the relatively recent gunning of a 1/4 Bn of Indians in the far west going on the black comedy of the Barbarian Invasions film script a decade ago rather than the more conservative Wikipedia mention of closer to 0.1 Bn via disease spread rather than guns, but still understood to be the largest sign of genocide in human history so far.

    [an aside: If the guns theory is more romantic than truth, perhaps aided by ‘cowboys & indians’, then it hasn’t stopped artists’ near, possibly, tongue in cheek shaming of the west through compositions like “White Man”; and possibly “Hitman” or as one might detect in the fury of some even historical classical hits right through to the furiously executed and prolonged single pedal bass drum line to help conclude “My Fairy King”, which does bear the lyrics “...to bring about the ruin to the promised land...”

    A lot of circa 1990 grunge ‘e.g. Temple of the Dog album’ and some Nirvana stuff did seem to get into a similar groove, but Hitman in 1991 by Queen showed how it’s done better.

    One more curious thing from that slightly hard to hear pounding single bass drum line that ends ‘My Fairy King’, which has that repetitive uniform style beat of the Indians, but properly sustaining it at around 500 rather than 100bpm is something that I haven’t heard done before in all of rock music and variants so far.

    I even searched you tube for single bass pedal speed, to find nothing but a plethora of double pedal speed challenges. No one seems to tackle single pedal speeds and the recognisable bench mark would seem to have been Led Zeppelin’s Communication Breakdown which is in small bursts at up to 2/3 of the speed, a couple of years or so earlier in 1969...

    I wonder why as it has so much to offer music charged with spurring and psyching up: and no less serious Scottish piping that repels, or is entirely stripped, from celtic influence. It can be the one thing that separates Scottish and Irish dance: the former is about ‘trodding soft on the land’ (NB a lyric in Queen’s “White Man”); and the latter is about clunking hard on stone. Each is equally awesome, but arouses differently, by sight and sound respectively... Scotland was of course, I argue later and as before, the probable last bastion of the aboriginal western peoples, hence the traces of influence; and the discontinuity from the history books and our school syllabi.]

    The Atlantic perhaps did eventually geographically divide all of the indigenous western peoples prior to western culture’s entire domination of Europe, but possibly Scotland as the last bastion before the continents broke away, breaking Scotland from Canada (?). For a certain period of time it may have even been the case that the Picts, as the once sole aboriginal of the now Scottish land, vacated westwards too upon western culture moving in to dominate (?) during the obscurity of the dark ages and not long before the west swims over itself to dominate there too. We are told twice 1) from the Scotti’s decendents from Ireland that the Picts were outright massacred by them at the turn of the 1st millennia without trace a few centuries beyond the actual disappearance of any of their tenuously traceable culture notwithstanding the continued upkeep of a supposed Pictish Chronicle; and 2) almost 1000 years earlier by the Romans who claimed similar stories before the need to build Hadrian’s wall!

    If you want to see present day Pictish art all one has to do is Google ‘totem poles’ images. ENJOY!

    Even the west’s self inflicted world war genocide if it may be called that is pale in significance with the ‘brushed under the carpet’ curse upon the Indians. Killing is now at manageable numbers, but what real need is there to even fight any more when the shame and damage of the world’s worst atrocity has left the world with a handful of reserves for the peoples we have come close to making extinct for their land. Are Europe, Asia and the motherland too small for us? If it were a handful of millions killed, fine, but why kill hundreds of millions all for the sake of a dream; a promised land; a land of this and that; etc. Has it really been worth it, and for how long are we to believe that innocence is our foundation, or more importantly, how long can western civilisation come across as a pack of lies when it has such a great pack of truths to offer the world...?

    White man’s supposed indigenous territory is more equatorial than it has become. Why has the Americas been necessary to captivate for Western Culture. Couldn’t such culture remain east indefinitely? It daren’t seem to go to the severer parts of the climate to which we expect the natives to feel free in their reserves, but that’s surely got to be a consolation.

    Would western culture be too much about ball and chain in the historically sophisticated equatorial east and why? Has white man had to act as the agent to spread such sophistication and western culture westwards in veritable exile from a denied homeland through a succession of warfare and ballistic advancement in order to thrive? As soon as the gun is available, down comes the west for real.

    If Cowboys & Indians was the game spurred on from the western continents, might Shepherds & Picts have been the game in Scotland if there were TVs? Well the Shepherd imagery has certainly been used for one of the very first Friendly Societies as associated with the birth of the Trade Unions movement in modern times and probably amongst the world’s longest serving among many others that should still exist, going upon a quick google trawl. Maybe we could dream up a retrospective Shepherds and Picts equivalent for the American public.

    What’s thriving though?: is it a mixed economy [of scale, “couldn’t resist”] that really harbours a secretive kind of communism underneath that the Scots possibly feel they’d be better controlling by themselves - through the mandate of a supposed economic union (as it possibly needs scale with currency to be achieved, i.e. a larger population to implement): perhaps a lucrative form of self-governed-annexation connected with the UK vehicle? I’ve not heard the likes of this before.

    It’s sounds incredibly cavalier unless the likes of the Nordic model was to become the overall goal of the UK, which it can’t, especially as the planned HS2 strategy is set to bolster an already centralised area of affluence and activitity in London. The HS2 would have to be re-planned as per my previous comments on various blogs to promote a more uniform UK to build on London-centricity rather than be slave to it.

    So cavalier that the UK would probably not tolerate it, as threatened, even if this meant taking-on immense financial risk rather than sharing it via a separatist-led union.

    The non-Scotland UK voters will certainly want to go full steam ahead with its centricities unabated by how Scotland might want to develop (if it can and escape its almost colonial background and reliance on the powerful mixed economy of the UK). The rest of the UK may be for taking/absorbing all of the UK assets or burdens, call them what you will, and displacing these away from Scotland so that it can strengthen an otherwise weakened economy. It may see the likes of Scotland’s shipbuilder’s relocate south too (?) if there’s a larger in-house carrot in the UK economy as opposed to an out-sourced exported one notwithstanding the claim that military vessels can’t be built in foreign countries!

    If there’s a Yes the rest of the UK will have to decide if it wished to 1) capitalise from an economic union mandate maintaining or offering a little better than the status quo of the present economy; or 2) decline it as threatened so that it takes total control of its affairs - rather than simply greed alone - as its top priority.

    I think that the rest of the UK will say ‘no thanks’ to a separatist union currency mandate even if Scotland doesn’t on the 18th of September, not because it may lose a close ally, but because it can’t lose how the rest of the commonwealth confides in it as a core UK unabated by political dependencies persuasions and further obscurities. It would have called for such a mandate with another country richer than Scotland, much sooner, if this were possible.

    I’m not saying that I like the unfair powers that can lurk underneath the UK economy, personally speaking, which can be visible if ‘aired and exposed’ if one’s clever enough to see through and detect clever scams rather than visible through non-lurking, but carefully planned legislated unfairness that ties/dictates rather than tricks, which was not the purpose of the UK’s mixed economy in the first place; and nor could I ever imagine it being the case in the last place, which is possible with separatist unifications sharing the currency – such as could beset a Scotland sick of democracy, perhaps one that never ever seems to vote in the parliament it wants as the First Minister reminds us in the recent Yes/No debate.

    This is what I meant by the danger of a mixed economy leading to a veritable planned economy in hiding rather than one in plain disguise and perchance.

    What scam have I personally got to gripe about though you ask? One that makes the bedroom tax laughably justifiable compared to what the UK government is indirectly helping to facilitate.

    Here’s my example and some may have others!

    This is supposedly concerning the recent Mortgage Market Regulations of the Financial Conduct Authority. My lender recently confirmed that a rule from this applies to me and precludes the belief that I’ve had from the bank, for 2 years, that if I got my career back on track then I’d be able to review ‘extending my mortgage’ to reduce repayments to an affordable amount - and/or include a ‘Consent to lease’ to permit a renter to pay it off. The ruling says that any accumulated arrears have to be cleared beforehand and not calculated as a product of the balance. This hadn’t been clearly explained to me for the 1.5 years that I’ve had my flat on the market as follows.

    2 years ago - when I wasn’t in arrears thanks to 1 year’s mortgage insurance and subsequent 2 year’s of DWP mortgage relief scheme help and subsequent whittling down of overdraft, credit, and exhausting any little savings that I had left - I offered if I could market the flat for rent rather than for sale and was told that this wouldn’t be an option as the borrower needed to have job security first in order to review an extension on a mortgage term – in my case so that a tenant’s rent would cover the lowered repayments rather than a salary (not always a given and arguably a catch 22 without a job, but short term mortgage holidays - for starters - among a raft of other means could potentially cover any non rental periods between leases to be reviewed on a 6 monthly basis! Hence my cheeky reference to this as a form of social engineering, especially as one cannot forcibly progress a career path that’s got stuck part way within a profession that one cannot register for without the necessary patronage from within it – yes remaining at Part 2 until a pipeline of jobs from elsewhere can be entrusted upon me through trust rather than through having the Part 3 tag and thereby able to register my letters, i.e. degree and diploma qualifications as an architect – another social catch 22 that I’ve had a bellyful of during unemployment). The flat is, apparently according to an agent, a very well sought after luxury flat to rent. It’s within a newish Greek Thomson commercial building conversion, and is proving not that currently affordable in the ‘for sale’ market despite having a low home report value for what it’s worth and where it is etc.

    If I lower too much, the accruing bank’s solicitors fees begin to push my balance closer towards negative equity, the solicitors who themselves have a portfolio of properties. I presume that not all repossessed properties go to auction and are instead rented (mines may become a classic example).

    They also told me at the time that A) it was in my interests to stick with the current term to avoid incurring fees and a higher interest rate; & also B) that waiting on job security would normally mean the bank being able to accept me clearing off arrears as part of the balance. Hence my preference to put the flat up for sale rather than hand my asset over (as a voluntary-repossession) for the bank to do the selling. I therefore accepted going into full monthly arrears, indefinitely, in the hope of getting an eventual job to stop my sale of the flat and help me to repay the mortgage on a more affordable extended-mortgage basis.

    I am now in the unfortunate position of having to clear off very unluckily highly risen remaining monthly repayments as bottlenecked into a few remaining years of the original mortgage period, where the scope of my age could have easily helped if it weren’t for the said precluding MMR rules, NB which if I knew were the ultimatum that the bank is now revealing, I wouldn’t have risked - for so many months - tunnelling so deep into arrears to hit a brick wall rather than find light at the end.

    I say unlucky as I’ve always had the wrong choice of product with my bank: they also wait till now to tell me an interest rate rise is on the horizon and that it’s not really in my interests to extend the term on the flat that I have happily stayed at for over 13 years. If they’d gave such prudent product advice in the past, between offering a tracker or fixed rate, then my repayments wouldn’t have risen to 1.25k per month, but would be not far off half of this today.

    Don’t laugh with my extended bracketed parenthesis in the next paragraph – bear with me, if you haven’t fallen asleep already.

    However, it’s the sucker punch, or punch line: that the lender waits until now (at the end of a 3 month sist to refuse [incompetent] quick fired repossession action in my favour; and after I have been volleyballed around by them and their solicitor in the last months in my last efforts to find the elusive but full evidence that I thought they’d consider or accept as an affordable ‘consent to lease’ means to repay £650pcm from lettable rent despite scope to lower even further to £619 due to my age; and review this on a 6 monthly basis pending me finding that elusive professional opening that’d put my career back on track, but that unbeknownst to me until now wouldn’t actually matter in the end due to the precluding FCA rule cited by the bank, i.e. therefore needing to be a job demanding a Director’s level of salary that would be able to afford paying off an acceptable portion of the arrears along with the full contractual monthly repayment, an out of pocket option for even a doctor I’d presume) to tell me the regulators financial rules are finally gospel, as if all these months I’ve been happy to bury myself alive in to too deep a ditch to return from: my legal adviser tells me that the bank may have to charge me at least a minimum of over 1.5k pcm if I were to find that elusive job if it were true that the Bank were precluded from negotiating an extended mortgage. My own estimate would be the 1.25k repayment plus at least the 4% VR interest and 27k (+7 years interest at 4%) / 7 years left on mortgage equals 1.6k pcm (my legal adviser being not far off in a very quick guess).

    Is a dream one bedroom flat really worth all this level of misguided self inflicted liability?

    If the solicitors (whom I’m being charged for by the grand’s worth of pounds) get back to me concurring with the lender’s final ultimatum to pay up or be repossessed, the 1st thing I do is not fight a decree to be granted, or appeal, but go straight to the Ombudsman for being mislead for a total of 2 years.

    What mid-career professional would ever in their right mind voluntarily run into such arrears knowing there’d be either: 1) a £1,600 minimum monthly payment, to bear, let alone 2) the debt from running oneself into such a situation of negative equity aided by the bank/solicitor partnership’s mismanagement &/or misleading of one’s [the customer’s] surely apparent charitable insanity should such repayments become unaffordable for the humble architectural assistant. A lawyer or doctor might be able to afford risking such charity on the bank’s behalf, but not an architect let alone assistant one.

    This entirely goes against the spirit of the FCA’s MMR rules that the Bank is citing as their reasoning for prioritising for repossession, which is to have the bank better assess its customer’s affordability and suitability for specific mortgage products. My bank has had me getting into far too much arrears, not to know themselves - in their misleading - that this route would be tremendously unaffordable for an architectural assistant.

    Perhaps it’s social engineering after all, but a crooked one for my scenario, saying via lies, that a job will save the day (getting the customer’s hopes up to have reason to stray in lengthy arrears) and help prevent repossession. However, it didn’t come until the last minute when I got the chance to complain that they’d strung me along all along by having me believe 1) that leasing could help pay things off if it were affordable even without a job (as I’d managed to demonstrate in end, albeit in vain); and 2) as social engineers for having me believe for so long that a job was necessary (ah communism) when in actual fact even that weren’t the case (eventually heralding the regulator’s ruling in stone, well not quite, but in paper) as right enough it could never be the case that workers would come first: Cameron would have to be Russian if it were the really the case that a worker not otherwise would benefit from banking opportunities and products via the regulators. The reality in this personal circumstance is that repossession is the actual ultimatum whether a worker or not. If the customer is naive or insane enough to help the banks financially repossess them (as besets my case) then that’s possibly the customer’s fault for giving the service provider too much trust.

    I was told of the area of social deprivation that I’d be moving into by an money matters adviser for a social landlord and ‘that I may wish to try and negotiate with the lender to provide the consent to lease that would allow me to retain the flat and move back into it eventually. I concurred with this, but my wild goose chase hitting a brick wall in the end has left me with much poorer prospects and the bank with potentially much richer prospects.

    As I write this I can hear Joplin’s the Entertainer as part of The Sting soundtrack. In my naivety, have I been conned and robbed through A) the government’s regulating authority for banks or was it through B) the bank/solicitor’s mismanagement of the regulating authority’s rules.

    Either way, back to my argument, such conning uses within the system if clever enough to detect and steer clear of could ironically be better than any planned variant that dictates unfair burdens, that a state could find doable through amending laws to suit (on for instance unfair contract terms).

    I hope that helps answer your question, and sorry for veering off to elaborate on my initial views surrounding governance matters and including some proof from personal minutiae of what can and can’t be tolerated within governments and breeds of union!

    Apologies for my ad lib approach to my longest script yet, I’m sure, without editing down or proof reading.

    If you've had a chuckle then join the gang, me too!

    Commented on: 2014-08-27T23:27:36.893

    The deal between Holyrood and Westminster could be renegotiated with less cash going to Scotland

    Scottish architects launch pro-independence manifesto