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Protectionism starts at home

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Norfolk’s architects aren’t happy. Some ‘out-of-towners’, namely Riches Hawley Mikhail from that there London, have managed to steal in and win the prestigious, Greyhound Opening affordable housing competition in Norwich

How very dare they. Even before their victory this week allegations were being bandied around that the ‘shortlist was weighted’ against local firms and that none of the finalists knew anything about the city either ‘geographically or historically’. 

Could this be true? ‘No, it’s nothing but sour grapes’ says Riches Hawley Mikhail, which beat more than 100 international firms under tight RIBA contest regulations to land the contest. What’s more, the firm points out, the victorious team included both structural and civil engineers from the East Anglian city and to top it off practice founder Cathy Hawley grew up in Norwich (and her parents still live there). Not quite Lindsey Oil Refinery is it?

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