Simon Smithson, the son of the architects behind the soon-to-be-demolished Robin Hood Gardens, has attacked politicians for tampering with the heritage-listing system, to erase prime examples of the UK’s post-war architecture.
An architect at Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, Smithson was a key figure in the campaign to save the brutalist landmark designed by Alison and Peter Smithson. Despite nationwide press coverage and support from architects including Zaha Hadid and Richard Rogers, the effort failed and the site is now being redeveloped. Smithson claimed politicians ‘leaned’ on listing body Historic England to choose not to list the estate, and described the buildings’ imminent demolition as an ‘act of vandalism’.
‘That this act of vandalism should come to pass, after years of an unprecedented campaign to save the buildings by the architectural profession both at home and abroad, is a failure on the part of all those charged with protecting the nation’s architectural heritage,’ said Smithson, in a statement sent to Dezeen.
Read Simon Smithson’s full statement: