… but it is traditional free-market behaviour

We were shocked to discover all the fuss in Scotland over something as traditional in our business as free-pitching – the life and soul of design.

Surely design is like all other service areas where experienced, highly paid professionals delight in spending countless hours preparing valuable (valuable to the client that is) submissions in the hope that someday this activity might pay off. I presume in Scotland the councils in question also ask their staff, their staff’s children and indeed anyone they know to prepare submissions for architectural projects as well as professional architectural practices. Indeed, if the councils are unhappy with their annual audits, I suggest that consultation with their staff may well produce the figures they desire.

As a design consultancy which has spent a decade handing out work, ideas and worthless time for free, we can only support Fife Council in its ability to extract the same from our colleagues in the Highlands and Lowlands. We congratulate it for its commitment to the FREE market – we have developed the free pitch to the ultimate degree where we insist that our staff will only get paid when a pitch is successful (we’re not here to support the public and private sectors).

May we presume that Fife Council has also been true to the people by ensuring that no monies are lavished on hiring a panel of professionals to judge the myriad of exciting ideas that will no doubt surface.

Nicholas Cloake

Creative director

Baseline Creative Services

Dublin Ireland

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