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PUTTING THE ROYAL INTO RIBA

LETTERS

It was great to read on my return from the American Institute of Architects Conference in Los Angeles a superb edition of the AJ (01.06.06).

Here, under the Building Study section, we have a marvellous article from Andrew Mead on the Weissenhofsiedlung scheme in Stuttgart, that focused attention on the recent restoration of Le Corbusier's exceptional double villa. Scholarly, concise and rich in detail, this article represents Mead at his best. And what fabulous photographs by Thomas Wolf.

Then, to contrast this preoccupation with the product of architectural endeavour, we get a glimpse of Jonathan Foyle's extensive research on the professional regulation of architects in the 19th century. Again, the article is scholarly and informative, but Foyle does however skirt around the important issue of when exactly the IBA (Institution of British Architects) became the RIBA. Rod Hackney has long disputed my claims that the first Royal charter went to Dublin. How extraordinary that the Republic's institute is still 'Royal' to this day.

Presumably our dear Irish friends think it worth submitting their rule changes to the approval of the privy council even today, in return for what some, at least, would consider to be the dubious privilege of Royal acknowledgement and 'Royalism'.

Another great issue, for which we thank you all.

Paul Hyett, Ryder HKS

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