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a life in architecture sue macgregor

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To Radio 4 listeners, Sue MacGregor is the voice of the Today programme, although she recently retired from the early morning slot. She says: 'I love to visit the 11th-century cathedral in Ravello, on a piazza high above Italy's Amalfi coast. It still has its magnificent 12th-century bronze door, with more than 40 illustrative panels, one of them showing a tiny St George and the Dragon. Inside, the pulpit has a wonderful mosaic of Jonah being swallowed by the whale, and then escaping.There is also a larger 13th-century pulpit with charming and spritely carved lions at its feet.'

MacGregor says it also reminds her of 'a happy family holiday in 1968 with my parents and sister, when we spent a whole month in the town'.

MacGregor continues the ecclesiastical theme: 'Probably any Norman church in Oxfordshire.

Take your pick.' (Pictured is Iffley, just outside Oxford).But a church also figures among her least favourite buildings. 'The one with the spindly spire near Warwick Avenue Tube Station.' This must be Biscoe & Stanton's Church of St Saviour (1973-76); Pevsner says 'the needle spire of glass fibre is a good landmark on the axis of Warwick Avenue, though a more meagre one than its predecessor'.

Another of MacGregor's dislikes is the office building south of Broadcasting House. She admits that it belongs to the BBC. 'It sits very ill with Nash's lovely All Souls Church, or even the 19th-century Langham Hotel across the road.'

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