The essence of Building’s editorial in the 9 May edition (page 3) is that the Prince of Wales’ intervention into the quality of design of the built environment, is a good thing. Up to a point
Prince Charles’ motivation seems admirable, and the targets he chooses are always interesting and usually controversial. But we never know whether his opinions are his own, or those of his professional advisers. If he is going to stick his neck out, he and his advisers should be prepared to defend his opinions in open debate with the design leaders. As it is, it is left to Denise Chevin to have to aim some credible arrows at his role. But she will get no answers.
I think she is unfair to accuse Richard Rogers and Norman Foster of having to go into exile as a result of Prince Charles’ “carbuncle” intervention. As far as I can see, the incident did no harm at all to their images, as witness the enormous amount of global and acclaimed work they have carried out since then – little of it “faux classical”. And, it should not be forgotten that his notorious carbuncle speech put architecture right in the front of media attention, from which it has benefited ever since. We may owe it to Prince Charles that we have such media-popular events as the Stirling prize.