It's a tale of two city watersides for Lord Heseltine - but whereas one was reborn in an urban renaissance and the other is drowning in mediocrity
There are many candidates for my wonder: my own home would top any list but if it's one that's in the public domain, it would have to be the Albert Dock, Liverpool. I arrived as environment secretary in 1979, just ahead of the bulldozers, and one of my first acts was to make sure that building was not destroyed.
It symbolises the rebirth of a great city and it is a spectacular piece of architecture. It went on to play a symbolic role in the urban renaissance the Conservatives created in the 1980s and 1990s.
My blunder is the development of the South Bank of the Thames. This was one of the great potential waterscapes of the urban world and the way we developed it after 1945 is shameful. Considering how much of the South Bank was rebuilt, the quality of the architecture is dismaying. I hope someone else will have a go. I was so appalled that I worked with officials in 1971-72 to create an urban development corporation on the South Bank. I was then promoted to aerospace minister and the plans fell into abeyance until I returned to the department in 1979, when I adapted them to the crying needs of the East End of London.