On this day in history : 13th August 1991 – The Prince of Wales resigns as the patron of Scotland’s National Museum after a row over a competition to design its new building….
It was not the first time Prince Charles had vented his opinions on modern architecture…. He had previously called the redesign of the National Gallery in London “a monstrous carbuncle”….
The Prince claimed the competition for the new building in Edinburgh did not allow for public consultation….
The winning entry, a five storey building made up of geometric forms, clad in golden Moray sandstone, was designed by London-based architects Gordon Benson and Alan Forsyth…. It was one of 400 entrants from all over the country….
The withdrawal of the Prince created problems for the museum’s trustees to secure funding for the new building – which cost £37m to construct and a further £18m for the interior…. It was opened by the Queen in November 1998 and on visiting early the following month Prince Charles refused to comment on the new building…. One of the winning architects stressed that the Prince’s objection was not aimed at the design itself but at the competition and the way the winner had been chosen….
In 1999 the Royal Fine Art Commission Trust awarded the building the Stirling Prize for the Best Building of the Year….