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THE lad in the poem who bore mid snow and ice the banner with the strange device Excelsior had a nice snappy slogan to rally the troops.

Construction News readers were invited on January 12 to come up with something similarly stirring for the campaign to boost the industrys image in the wake of Latham but seem to have had difficulty being concise.

Career Building, from Colin Godsmark of Lovell Construction, was the snappiest suggested slogan; Mr Godsmark also managed the less succinct but more self-explanatory Build your Career by Constructing the Future.

Other contenders included Building a Future Created by You from A Wright of London; Building a Constructive Understanding from Terry Cox of Doncaster; and Construction: the Oldest Industry pioneering Tomorrows Technology from Geoff Walsh of St Helens.

A bottle of something suitably fizzy to Mr Godsmark, and thanks to all the others.

THERE are, I suppose, previous instances of man-made structures being preserved for purposes other than those for which they were built. Hampshire County Councils decision over the Greywell tunnel may, though, be a first in that a non-human new use has triumphed over the original human use.

The tunnel was built to carry the Basingstoke Canal through a hill between Odiham and Up Nately.

It fell into disuse almost a century ago when part of the roof collapsed and for the past 20 years has been identified as an important winter hibernation site for bats particularly the Natterers bat.

Hampshire has now decided that the bats are more important than boats. It has come out against a proposal to restore the canal to working order and in favour of retaining Greywell as a bat sanctuary.

I AM grateful to the East Anglian Daily Times for a shaggy dog story involving a building company chief from Suffolk.

Graham Gregory is considering appealing against a court decision in which he was ordered to pay hefty costs to a firm of accountants which took action over a disputed bill.

Mr Gregorys grouse is that his concentration while giving evidence at Colchester County Court was broken by persistent but unidentified snoring. It was completely distracting, he told the paper.

The source of the snoring was not revealed until the end of the hearing. It was a spaniel belonging to Judge Nicholas Brandt.

Mr Gregory has received a letter from the clerk to the court which claims that Judge Brandt has been taking his dog to court for some time, and that there have not been complaints before. On the contrary, the letter says, it is our experience that his presence tends if anything to relax litigants.

LORD Wakehams recent appointment to the board of merchant bankers NM Rothschild, where he joins his old chum Norman Lamont, has revived all the whispering allegations and innuendo about the relations between ministers, privatised companies and privatisation advisers which Lord Nolan is now investigating.

So I was interested to see an early target of the whisperers in operation last week. Former employment and trade and industry secretary Lord Young of Graffham, now chairman of Cable and Wireless, was presenting the prizes at the Facilities and Property Management quality awards for 1994.

The Facilities Manager of the Year award went to Mark Newell. And where does Mr Newell work?

By sheer coincidence, his employer is ... Cable and Wireless.

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