Architects all ears at success of prince's 'Noddyland'
The Prince of Wales' pet architecture project is winning over some of the sceptics, reports Frank McDonald, Environment Editor
Poundbury. The name provokes winces and worse from serious architects. Even its own 10th anniversary brochure concedes that this picturesque extension to Dochester was "excoriated by much of the press and routinely scoffed at in bien pensant conversation" when it was first mooted.
Was it not a "vanity project" for the Prince of Wales, "a colossal folly slung up with haughty disdain for the wisdom of professionals"? Leon Krier, the Luxembourg-born architect and polemicist who master-planned it for Prince Charles, was almost seen as a traitor who had gone over to the enemy.
One of the Dublin-based architects who travelled over to see Poundbury at the invitation of Treasury Holdings took one look at the brochure and dismissed it as "Noddyland". But that was before he saw the place itself and realised that there was something of substance beneath all those quaint faÃ§ades.