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Murray to step down from Biennale top job next year

The founder of London's phenomenally successful architecture biennale is to hand over control after this year's event.

Peter Murray, the mastermind behind the city-centre 'celebration' of the built environment, told the AJ he would not be taking the helm of the next biennale in 2008 because it had grown too big.

This year a staggering 100,000 people are expected to visit almost 180 different events across the capital next month - more than four times the number which enjoyed the inaugural biennale in 2004.

However Murray, the head of marketing consultancy Wordsearch, who is among dozens of event organisers working on exhibitions and shows for free, says he is struggling to find the time to manage the burgeoning workload.

Murray joked: 'Having done it twice, it's enough. My colleagues are starting to get fed up I'm not bringing in the fees at the moment.

He added: 'And everyone is currently camped around the Wordsearch offices.'

Murray believes that the event, which was dealt a minor blow last week when the Arts Council pulled a tranche of cash, should be funded by an organisation such as Creative London.

He added: 'The event has grown and could be privately funded. Equally if Ken Livingstone and the government are serious about creative industries being key to our economic future, why are they not supporting the biennale more?'

London Architecture Biennale runs for a week from June 16.

by Richard Waite

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