The Top Ten: Horrible buildings
John Rentoul is chief political commentator for The Independent on Sunday, and visiting professor at King's College, London, and at Queen Mary University of London. Previously he was chief leader writer for The Independent. He has written a biography of Tony Blair, whom he admired more at the end of his time in office than he did at the beginning.
Sunday 10 August 2014
These are mostly British, and indeed many of them are in London, because I stick with what I know and I've a few long-standing grudges to settle. Some of these were nominated for last week's Top 10 Great Buildings, but this is where they really belong.
1. Preston Bus Station
"The Brutalist masterpiece that has always reminded me of a concrete lasagne," says Conor Pope.
2. Buckingham Palace
"I've always found it uninspiring and unkingly," says Simon Wilder. Matt Prissick and Michael Harris agree.
3. South Bank Centre, London
Suggested by Ned Donovan. All right inside, I accept.
4. National Library of Kosovo, Pristina
Joseph Willits was not sure for which category to nominate this: "Great" or "Horrible". He loves it; I think it is hideous.
5. Lock Keeper's Cottage, Queen Mary University of London
6. Seeley Historical Library, Cambridge
The history faculty library.
7. University of York Central Hall
Nominated by Peter Noble, who adds that, "The whole original campus is pretty bad."
8. Kensington Town Hall
I have to cross the road with my head turned to one side on my way to work to avoid catching sight of it.
9. Old Home Office building, now Ministry of Justice, Petty France
Nominated by Carl Gardner.
10. New Home Office building, Marsham Street
From the Brutalism of the 1970s to the plasticky tat of the 2000s.
Next week: Once-common sounds.
Coming soon: Eggcorns, such as 'to be pacific' or 'damp squid'. Send your suggestions, and ideas for future Top 10s, to email@example.com
film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Three-year-old boy shoots pregnant mother and father in New Mexico
- 2 Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
- 3 Jewish community urged to boycott Cornwall village after residents vote for 'Hitlers Walk' sign to be reinstated
- 4 Benedict Cumberbatch's Alan Turing gay-rights campaign snubbed by Prince William and Kate Middleton
- 5 Kim Sears responds to swearing controversy with 'parental advisory' T-shirt at Andy Murray's Australian Open final
Daniel Radcliffe deemed 'not marketable' without his English accent
Gorillaz Phase 4: Cartoon supergroup is back as new artwork is unveiled
Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
As Better Call Saul launches, here are the other spin-off shows we need to see
Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
President Putin is a dangerous psychopath - reason is not going to work with him
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign