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Glass distinction

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Palaces have an enduring attraction for the British, so expect big crowds for an exhibition on the Crystal Palace at Sydenham at the Dulwich Picture Gallery.

Queen Victoria opened the complex, which was twice as big as the original Paxton design for Hyde Park, in June 1854, but it was destroyed by fire in 1936. The gallery says modestly that it is to the Sydenham palace that we owe 'theme parks, shopping malls and the historicist setting of Hollywood epic films'. Phew.

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