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Beware - your 'exes' may come back to haunt you

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The debate about who really designed the East Manchester stadium (AJ 6.6.02) raises the question of design credits and the age-old problem of the individual versus the collective.

Years ago the Salaried Architects Group urged an exhibition of buildings credited to great architects and great offices, and suggested the true story of the individual architects who made the buildings happen should be appropriately credited.

Nothing much came of the exhibition, but the principle of proper credits remains, and indeed has perhaps assumed increasing importance as result of recent copyright legislation. It would probably be a good idea if larger practices established their own formal procedures for credits, particularly in relation to staff or partners who have left the firm.

The sting can often be taken out of these situations where it is plain what the rules of engagement are from the outset. Wise practices will be generous about the contribution of their 'exes', not least because it will encourage those still there that they will not be forgotten either.

Sandy Benson, Southwold

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