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Winning ways

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A more convincing media pundit is Michael Winner, the fleshy hedonist who writes a column for the News of the World. His latest effort is headlined 'The bullying and sheer lunacy I met beggars belief '. Interestingly, he is talking about the planning department of Westminster City Council, which has been messing him about for several years over his attempts to building a memorial to police killed in the course of duty.

Michael teamed up with Lord Foster, but only after a bruising experience with Lord St John of Fawsley, when he was boss of the Royal Fine Art Commission. Winner describes Lord St John's behaviour as 'bullying and facetious', which I find hard to believe. Foster does not escape entirely unscathed - 'he kept changing his design so it took about three years' - but at last permission has been granted for a site in the Mall. Just to be helpful, Winner describes the Mall as being 'within a stone's throw of Buckingham Palace'. Who would have thought it?

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