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Mr T. N. Akroyd (Vice-president): Dr. Lewsley has touched on a matter that has been exercising the minds of many engineers for some time, i.e. professional negligence. I hope, however, that we do not become too morbid over the subject. There is a world of difference between showing a lively interest and a morbid interest because the audience here tonight is composed mainly of ‘doers’ or performers. As doers, if you have a morbid interest in this subject you will stop ‘doing’ and that will be the end of your raison d’etre. There is a world of difference between ‘doers’ and ‘advisers’ because advisers like a situation that is ossified, so that the facts do not change; they can then venture an opinion, 3 months later, on what you should have done at the time, if you had had the benefit of their advice. So there is a problem for the entrepreneur, a problem for the structural engineer, and a problem for the contractor. You have to act now; that usually means you need a clear grasp of the principles involved if you are to act rationally. Christopher Lewsley
Mr J. A. Waller (F) (Oscar Faber & Partners): I would like to congratulate the authors on a very interesting and thought-provoking paper. In many buildings today, considerable efforts are made to achieve the optimum or lowest cost solution within each professional discipline. Unfortunately, the process is not so often carried out when it involves crossing professional boundaries. The authors have clearly shown what can be achieved if the will is there to try.
President’s diary The President and Mrs Horne look forward to joining members of the Yorkshire Branch at their Annual Dinner and Dance on Friday 8 May 1981. Professor Horne will be taking the Chair at the Institution’s 1-day symposium in London on Tuesday 12 May, when the contents of the draft Code of Practice for low-rise housing will be reviewed.