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Engineering credit for bridge achievement

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Prior to the Millennium Bridge opening, it was not possible to view or read a feature without the primary reference being Lord Foster. No surprises there, then. It was, quite categorically, Lord Foster's blade of light, super slender ribbon of steel, a beautifully elegant design and another worthy showpiece from Foster and Partners.

It is then found to wobble and lo, Ove Arup and Partners is not so much being pushed into the limelight but left standing by the fast-reversing Foster PR machine. So it is a piece of engineering after all.

'The issue is nothing to do with us guv, we were only the architects. It is all the engineer's problem, it was lead consultant.'

Arup the lead consultant, well, you would never have guessed prior to the weekend.

So the bridge sways a bit, these things happen when you 'push the boundaries of technology' (a favourite catchphrase for many architects' offices - Future Systems et al). But who is pushing technology?

This is a wonderful opportunity for Ove Arup to reclaim the credit for its achievement now that the architect is effectively saying, yes, we were a part of this but it is primarily Arup's design.

Maybe if Ove Arup had put a little wobble in the London Eye then it would have got the credit due for that marvellous piece of engineering as well.

Stephen Haskins, Kennington, London

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