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Leather brigade

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Peter Rees, the City Corporation planning officer, was on combative form at the Heron Tower inquiry last week, having been given a torrid time by Richard Phillips, QC for English Heritage. EH has been trying to convince the inspector that the City has changed its views on tall buildings and their skyline impact . A good laugh when you think it was EH which backed the Swiss Re tower, now under construction. On the second day of his cross-examination, it was suggested to Rees that office development should and could be taking place in regeneration areas on the City fringes. He replied that perhaps it could, but quite possibly would not in the event. How so? 'Because English Heritage storm-troopers are already trying to stop things happening, ' came the reply.

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