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Memorial lettering is quite out of keeping

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I greatly appreciated the Memorial Landscapes article (AJ 31.1.02), having just returned from a trip to Rome and Bologna to visit a number of similar projects there.

However, I was surprised to see on the cover photograph of the new Metropolitan Police Memorial Garden in Hendon that the lettering on the large commemorative stone is embossed rather than engraved.

Surely this is inappropriate?

Memorial lettering, by tradition, is carved or engraved, to symbolise and express an absence.

The gold lettering here appears grotesquely out of sympathy with the mood of the garden, though I understand from Andrew Mead's review that this decision was not in the hands of the landscape architects.

But it does raise the issue of the quality of calligraphy and inscription in all forms of modern design and architecture, a subject at present receiving too little attention.

Ken Worpole, London N4

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