Jack Pringle’s comments (3 December, page 34) demonstrate how out of touch with reality the RIBA remains in 2004, with its obsession for style before function.
The Holiday Inn at King’s Cross is not the prettiest building in London but it does not deserve the scorn poured upon it by JP. This is a 400-bedroom hotel built, as stated in the article, at a cost of £15.3m – that’s less than £40,000 a bedroom, which in 1992 was some achievement. Prize-winning architectural embellishment is hard to achieve at this level of expenditure.
The Skylon, on the other hand, had no usable floor area and, no doubt, cost a vast amount of money in 1950. This pylon together with the inverted saucer-like building adjacent, brings to mind that other, more recent, £750m architectural masterpiece a little further down the river, photographs of which, I suspect, hang in JP’s office.
John Rogers, via email