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With a bang. . .

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Opening Groupe Signes' and Patel Taylor's splendid Thames Barrier Park, London mayor Ken Livingstone referred to the 15 or so years of the project's gestation.

'It's a pity the opening didn't slip a bit more, ' he said. 'We could have used the half-a-million-poundsworth of Chinese fireworks that are making their way here.'

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