Ewart Parkinson Former President Royal Town Planning Institute CardiffReuse content
YOUR report on the Millenium Fund ("Design for futurist Britain", 11 December) referred to Joseph Paxton's design of Crystal Palace as the competition winner. This is not so. In May 1850 the Building Committee rejected all 245 submissions to the a rchitectural competition. The Building Committee, which included six famous 19th-century engineers and architects, then produced its own design on 22 June, which went out to tender. The design was so grotesque it became a laughing stock. At the last mome nt the Duke of Devonshire persuaded them to allow an alternative design. Paxton, his head gardener, produced drawings in nine days. They were accepted by the commission on 26 July and the contractor moved on to the site on 30 July.