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RIBA confident of wooing politicians

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The RIBA's president George Ferguson is confident the main political parties will sit up and pay attention to the institute's new manifesto for architecture.

Speaking before the launch of the document at Portcullis House in London on Tuesday (22 March), Ferguson said he was in no doubt that parts of the 21-point action plan would be adopted by the next government.

'If the manifesto is taken up by candidates and used in an intelligent way, it will gain them votes, ' he said. 'I think we will get some MPs who will virtually sign up to the whole thing.' Among the manifesto's points are calls to make government funding dependent on good design, and to introduce stamp-duty relief on the first sale of sustainable homes.

'The manifesto is not to do with architects, ' said Ferguson.

'It's to do with architecture. It's about place-making and about those things that impact on the public.' The pamphlet, leaked to the AJ last month (20.2.05), has been welcomed by construction minister Nigel Griffiths. He said:

'British architects are playing a leading role in Britain's building boom. Their views are always welcome and we are giving the document serious consideration in Whitehall.'

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