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City habits

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The whole business of livery company dinners is redolent with history, even for those which are of recent origin - architects were given livery status in 1988. The dinner included the 'loving cup', and the people involved have the usual arcane titles, ranging from the Dennis Wheatley-esque 'Master', present incumbent Michael West, to various wardens, chief of which is the Upper Warden, currently the AJ planning correspondent Brian Waters, who will be the next Master. A nice innovation this year was the presentation of the company's New City Architecture award, which it runs in conjunction with the City Heritage Society. This year's award went to 60 Queen Victoria Street (architect Foggo Associates, client the Heron Group, contractor McAlpine), with a commendation - made for the first time because of its quality - to the Merrill Lynch headquarters on Newgate Street (architect Swanke Hayden Connell, client the bank, contractor Mace).

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