Eden Project founder Tim Smit in plea for creativity

Tim Smit tells Landscape Institute Awards audience that business-speak stifles the imagination.

Eden Project founder Tim Smit has urged landscape architects to think more carefully about their language use, saying that business-speak was stifling their creativity

Smit, who was guest speaker at the Landscape Institute Awards in London, said: "Language is robbing your profession of its sexiness. You should never use language in your profession that you cannot find in a piece of romantic poetry.

"At Eden we have fines for people who use expressions such as 'centre of excellence', 'cutting edge' and 'out-of-the-box thinking'. Language is so important because everything we do as creative people is about telling the right story."

Smit told the awards ceremony of several hundred landscape professionals: "What you do is not about strategies or masterplans - it is about paradise lost and won and it's about mystery. If you can't dream in it, get drunk in it, make love in it, you might as well Tarmac it."

Meanwhile, Landscape Institute president Jo Watkins spoke of the controversy around the Government's proposed National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the quagmire of trying to hit on a definitive definition of "sustainability".

"Heated debate surrounding the NPPF has, to date, been largely ill informed. The Government itself is struggling to provide a substantial definition for what it terms sustainable development," she said.

"There seems to be unanimous agreement in the Government, among the public and from professionals such as ours, that achieving sustainability should be the greatest challenge of the 21st century. Defining exactly what that means, on the other hand, is the first stumbling block," he added.

Landscape Institute Award Winners - full listing.


16 - The number of awards made by the Landscape Institute at its annual ceremony last week

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