Following Don Grant’s letter (DW 17 July) and my own visit to Expo ’98 in Lisbon, I can confirm that, The Times article of 27 June is wholly accurate. Our British Pavilion by HP: ICM is certainly one of the worst national pavilions I visited (and I visited 11).
It is totally out of touch with Expo itself and with anything to do with Great Britain’s huge achievements on, in and under the oceans, past and present. Even the VIP lounge is fitted out with extraordinary bad taste.
Compared to, say, the Italian Pavilion and those of most of our European partners, we appear to be low on design, technology and, worst of all, national pride.
That the same group should have been appointed to handle Hanover 2000 (45 million visitors expected) demonstrates that those in charge of projecting our image abroad lack any sense of style or imagination. It would be interesting to poll the design industry to find out which design consultacies (if any) were invited to submit a competitive pitch for Lisbon and Hanover.
As for the Millennium Dome, we can only be grateful that Imagination is back on the scene, albeit via Ford and BT. At least we can be sure that some elements of the interior will exhibit flair and style in keeping with the exterior.