UK: BUILDING'S DECLINE AND FALL.

UK: BUILDING'S DECLINE AND FALL. - In 1984 there were four construction firms among the 100 largest UK companies, now there are none. Not only is the industry inefficient, it's deaf to how far it has fallen behind foreign competitors.

by Matthew Lynn.

In 1984 there were four construction firms among the 100 largest UK companies, now there are none. Not only is the industry inefficient, it's deaf to how far it has fallen behind foreign competitors.

As so often in England, the tale is told most honestly through black humour. There is the line, popular since the early 1990s: 'What do you say to an architect with a job?' 'Big mac and fries, please'. Or there is the story about how the upper floors of all new offices must have sealed windows, to stop the builder jumping out; but the architects don't build any windows at all, to remove any temptation to follow the builder.

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