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Lion hearts

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Congratulations to the aforementioned Jeremy Melvin, incidentally, who has just been made a knight of the Order of the Lion of Finland.

He will receive the honour from the ambassador before the latter departs these shores. Melvin joins a rare band of British architectural figures honoured by the Finns, which comprises the editor of the Architectural Review, Peter Davey, and Sandy Wilson. The latter spoke last week in his own British Library on the subject of architects as superstars. Sandy has a nice line of argument, which relates the elevation of architecture into a matter of aesthetics and the sublime ('it was all the fault of the 18th century'), to the absurdity of architects being asked to provide indemnity cover of £5 million for jobs that only cost £1.7 million in total. Come to think of it, why doesn't the RIBA set up a big indemnity operation that individual practices could plug into as necessary, at reasonable rates?

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