Letters: We don't deserve good buildings

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The Independent Online
Sir: John Gummer is calling for well-mannered architecture in our cities ("Blots on the city landscape destroy lives, says Gummer", 1 October).

The residential environment of our cities, with its legacy of Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian terraces, interwar and postwar cottage estates and suburban semis, was once world renowned for its well-mannered architecture. Over the past 20 years this heritage has been relentlessly vandalised by owner-occupiers with the encouragement of the replacement window and home "improvement" industries.

Most of pre-1960 residential England has been transformed beyond recognition into an architectural slum. Mr Gummer is wasting his time. The aesthetically ignorant English do not appreciate well-mannered architecture and will destroy it if they have it.

JOHN CUNDILL

London SW15

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