August 8th, 2010

Can we restore Britain to architectural greatness?

I hate all of these modern buildings that look as if they were hacked from a solid block of misery (although I do appreciate the work of the builders).

Why can't we go back to the gothic and Victorian arcgitecture of old; is it simply a question of money/ health and safety? I mean genuine workmanship in the woodwork, stone carving, glazing...why can't we just sod the modern era and political correctness once in a while and build something that's actually nice, and so grand that we could actually be proud to call it a public building?

Most building nowadays are modular meaning that all doors, windows, bricks, blocks, fixtures, fittings etc are of a standard size. In effect a building can be constructed using 'off the shelf' materials - a window in one building will be exactly the same as a window in many other buildings.

A system called SMM (Standard Method of Measurement) was introduced many years ago in order to standardise things within the building industry. Architects, quantity surveyors, engineers all work from the same set of specifications.

True craftsmanship is a dying art. Historically a master craftsman would take on an apprentice who would learn the craft first hand over many years and then in turn pass his skills on. Much of today's training is learned from a pre-determined curriculum in college.

The skills do still exist and buildings of merit could still be constructed but the client would have to be prepared to wait a long time before completion of the project and would need a healthy bank balance.

As with so many things, people want things now and they want them at minimum cost.

1111005  LARGE ANTIQUE FRENCH CARVED OAK GOTHIC CABINET
1111005 LARGE ANTIQUE FRENCH CARVED OAK GOTHIC CABINET
$3,660.00
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Antique Victorian Gothic Cast Iron Carved Griffin Vanity Bench Stool Ottoman
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$351.00
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14641 Antique Pair of Boudoir Carved Parlor Chairs
14641 Antique Pair of Boudoir Carved Parlor Chairs
$195.00
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ornate carved pair of walnut gothic chairs very fancy carved flowers nr
ornate carved pair of walnut gothic chairs very fancy carved flowers nr
$100.00
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French Antique Carved Wood Architectural Door Panel Gothic
French Antique Carved Wood Architectural Door Panel Gothic
$245.00
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ANTIQUE VICTORIAN WALNUT ENTRY SOFA TABLE CARVED ARCHES PARCEL PAINT GILT 66
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$1,499.99
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A RARE PAIR OF 17TH CENTURY CARVED OAK CARYATIDS
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antique hand carved shabby1800s mahogany panel gothic coffee sofa hall table
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$69.00
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CARVED OAK ANTIQUE GOTHIC 100 YEAR OLD PRAYER BENCH 11CC41
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$450.00
Time Remaining: 1d 8h 40m
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French Gothic Cabinet Narrow Model with Carved Art
French Gothic Cabinet Narrow Model with Carved Art
$1,900.00
Time Remaining: 1d 11h 48m
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Gothic Furniture French Gothic Bench Carved Faces
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$2,500.00
Time Remaining: 1d 11h 51m
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EXQUISITE ANTIQUE SPANISH REVIVAL Cane Accent CHAIR GREEN VELVET CARVED w Finial
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19TH CENTURY CARVED OAK BLACK FOREST FIRE SCREEN
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REAL NICE ANTIQUE CHESTNUT CHURCH GOTHIC CARVED VESTMENT CABINET JRPS54872
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$9,000.00
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French Antique Carved Walnut Wood Architectural Door Panel Gothic 2
French Antique Carved Walnut Wood Architectural Door Panel Gothic 2
$265.00
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French Antique Carved Walnut Wood Architectural Door Panel Gothic 1
French Antique Carved Walnut Wood Architectural Door Panel Gothic 1
$265.00
Time Remaining: 1d 17h 50m
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French Antique Carved Walnut Wood Architectural Door Panel Gothic 2
French Antique Carved Walnut Wood Architectural Door Panel Gothic 2
$265.00
Time Remaining: 1d 17h 53m
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ANTIQUE CARVED OAK GOTHIC HALL TREE
$1,000.00
Time Remaining: 1d 18h 26m
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Epic Italian Dark Walnut Heavily Carved Buffet Medieval Fight Scene Lions SPQR
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$5,000.00
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Antique Quarter Sawn Bookcase with Carved Detail and Bevelled Glass Doors 7475
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$1,300.00
Time Remaining: 1d 20h 50m
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19th c Gothic Victorian Chip  Tracery Carved Walnut Bonnet Top Hall Seat
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$2,400.00
Time Remaining: 1d 22h 48m
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$189.00
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North Wind Carving Roundabout Desk Corner Chair Mahogany Vintage Bench Stool
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$425.00
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Unique Carved Cabinet in Oak Many Carved Faces
Unique Carved Cabinet in Oak Many Carved Faces
$995.00
Time Remaining: 2d 10h 22m
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FABULOUS CARVED OAK ANTIQUE PLATE RACK BY RJ HORNER W CARVED LION HEADS
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$1,575.00
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SET OF 6 +2 19TH CENTURY VICTORIAN CARVED OAK GOTHIC DINING CHAIRS
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$3,269.00
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FRENCH EARLY 20TH CENTURY CARVED OAK ANTIQUE STOOL c1900s NAUGHTY STEP
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$25.12 (1 Bid)
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1111038  ANTIQUE FRENCH GOTHIC CABINET CARVED PANELS SOLID WALNUT
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$3,150.00
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GREAT CARVED ORIGINAL FRENCH GOTHIC CHURCH WALNUT CABINET DR54
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$2,450.00
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BEAUTIFUL ORIGINAL WALNUT GOTHIC CARVED SERVER CHURCH CABINET DR57
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$3,150.00
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Antique English Renaissance Ebonized Oak Carved Vestry Cabinet Wine Liquor Bar
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$1,465.00
Time Remaining: 2d 22h 59m
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111047  ANTIQUE FRENCH CARVED OAK GOTHIC HALL BENCH
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$2,470.00
Time Remaining: 2d 23h 26m
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16587 Gothic Style Carved Oak Credenza
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$1,150.00
Time Remaining: 2d 23h 50m
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Set of 4 Antique 19c Gothic Jacobean Side Chairs Hand Carved  VERY NICE SET
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$20.49 (2 Bids)
Time Remaining: 3d 1h 3m
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Rare Vintage Antique Reproduction Glastonbury Carved Wood Chair
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$695.00
Time Remaining: 3d 9h 49m
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19TH CENTURY PROFUSELY CARVED OAK BUFFET SIDEBOARD
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$6,604.72
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19TH CENTURY CARVED OAK GOTHIC REVIVAL CUPBOARD CABINET
19TH CENTURY CARVED OAK GOTHIC REVIVAL CUPBOARD CABINET
$3,936.15
Time Remaining: 3d 13h 47m
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A Large High Back Gothic Carved Mahogany  Leather Fabric King Chair NICE
A Large High Back Gothic Carved Mahogany Leather Fabric King Chair NICE
$695.00
Time Remaining: 3d 14h 44m

GREAT CARVED GOTHIC 1880S OLD WALNUT CARVED SIDEBOARD
GREAT CARVED GOTHIC 1880S OLD WALNUT CARVED SIDEBOARD
$3,150.00
Time Remaining: 3d 16h 9m
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Petite Antique English Carved Oak Bench Stool GOTHIC Coffee TABLE Display Stand
Petite Antique English Carved Oak Bench Stool GOTHIC Coffee TABLE Display Stand
$349.00
Time Remaining: 3d 16h 24m

French Gothic 1890s Antique Armor or Dowry Chest or Trunk Carved Knights
French Gothic 1890s Antique Armor or Dowry Chest or Trunk Carved Knights
$1,675.00
Time Remaining: 3d 18h 46m
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Antique Solid Tiger Oak Gothic Revival Carved Throne Chair Vinyl Victorian Swag
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$899.99
Time Remaining: 3d 20h
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A 108 Exquisite English Antique Carved Oak Sideboard Buffet
A 108 Exquisite English Antique Carved Oak Sideboard Buffet
$2,250.00
Time Remaining: 3d 21h 7m
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Gothic Art Armchair with Amazing Carved Gargoyles
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$1,330.00
Time Remaining: 3d 21h 29m
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Gothic carved ornate Italian wood dining table and 6 carved chairs c 1890
Gothic carved ornate Italian wood dining table and 6 carved chairs c 1890
$8,500.00
Time Remaining: 4d 2h 5m

Vintage RUSTIC Spanish Gothic Style Gold Gilt Carved Wood KING HEADBOARD
Vintage RUSTIC Spanish Gothic Style Gold Gilt Carved Wood KING HEADBOARD
$525.00
Time Remaining: 4d 2h 15m
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Antique Vintage Spanish Gothic Carved Red Mahogany Executive Desk Mid 1900s
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$4,400.00
Time Remaining: 4d 2h 16m
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SET 6 ANTIQUE ENGLISH GOTHIC STYLE HEAVY CARVED BARLEY TWIST OAK DINING CHAIRS
SET 6 ANTIQUE ENGLISH GOTHIC STYLE HEAVY CARVED BARLEY TWIST OAK DINING CHAIRS
$799.95
Time Remaining: 4d 2h 41m
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PETITE Antique English Carved Oak Gothic Stool Tea Table painted display stand
PETITE Antique English Carved Oak Gothic Stool Tea Table painted display stand
$229.00
Time Remaining: 4d 4h
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Antique English Gothic Carved Pine Church Altar Candelabra Candle Stand ON SALE
Antique English Gothic Carved Pine Church Altar Candelabra Candle Stand ON SALE
$625.00
Time Remaining: 4d 4h
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Antique Victorian French Oak Carved Side Table Ladies Firescreen Gothic Stand
Antique Victorian French Oak Carved Side Table Ladies Firescreen Gothic Stand
$579.00
Time Remaining: 4d 4h
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Antique French Carved Oak Gothic KNEELER Prie Dieu Architectural Christian
Antique French Carved Oak Gothic KNEELER Prie Dieu Architectural Christian
$1,100.00
Time Remaining: 4d 4h
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