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Big names rally to save Farrell’s Comyn Ching building

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Architectural heavyweights including Charles Jencks, Deyan Sudjic and Jonathan Glancey are backing a campaign to list Terry Farrell’s Comyn Ching building in Covent Garden

The stars have written to Historic England in an attempt to get the 1980s Postmodern redevelopment listed arguing that it is of international significance.

The listing bid was prompted by the approval of plans drawn up by Morrow & Lorraine which campaigners say will significantly alter the original scheme.

According to Jencks the Farrells development paved the way for works across the continent such as Norman Foster’s Reichstag and David Chipperfield’s Neues Museum in Berlin.

This Postmodern strategy of creating what could be called the Time City has today become much more prevalent even among Modernists – witness Norman Foster at Berlin’s Reichstag or David Chipperfield’s mixed methods at the Neues Museum in the same city – but Comyn Ching was the first example here 40 years before, and should be preserved and celebrated for starting this more inclusive approach,’ Jencks said.

‘More than 30 years later it still stands up as a brilliant piece of work,’ commented Sudjic.

Glancey added that the scheme is ‘Postmodernism and New Urbanism at its confident best’.

Other architects to add their voice to the campaign include ex-FAT directors Charles Holland and Sean Griffiths, past-RIBA president Sunand Prasad and CZWG founder Piers Gough.

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