Jack Gostling writes from Hampton Hill after reading the feature on the Span developments in last week's Nostalgia Notebook (August 24).

"Your article brings back memories of my association with Eric Lyons and Span covering more than thirty years.

"The definitive work Eric Lyons and Span' (RIBA Publishing), generously acknowledges that "the Twickenham family company, E Gostling Builders Ltd ......was to become the constructional backbone throughout Lyons' whole career, especially for the Span projects"......

"Within that company, Span schemes were my responsibility, starting in 1954 with six houses in Third Cross Road, Twickenham.

"The Cedars" (19 houses) 1957, was my first major scheme, and Mallard Place, Teddington (102 flats and houses) 1984, was my last.

"Altogether,this involved me in projects at Weybridge, Taplow, Gerrards Cross, Ashtead, Blackheath, and the uncompleted village at New Ash Green, Kent: in all, 32 schemes, totalling some 1270 dwellings.

"When, in 1955, the company moved to set up a Business Park in Holly Road, Hampton Hill, Eric Lyons designed the headquarters block, St Clare House.

"Within the Borough of Richmond upon Thames, Span created a total of 412 homes, and, probably, a sufficient readership to justify the purchase by the borough libraries of a few copies of the RIBA book, perhaps?"

The name Gostling is a well remembered name in the borough as the long established firm of builders based in Hampton Hill.

Mr Gostling's grandfather Edward arrived in Heath Gardens, Twickenham in 1908 originally from Norfolk and then Hackney.

The family tradition was continued by his son Edward and then his grandchildren Jack, now 83 and his late brothers, Frank and Peter.

Jack's describes his own role as "hands on" liaison with crafstmen and workers "They talked my language and I talked theirs", said Mr Gostling from his home in St James's Road, Hampton Hill. He adds that John Malyan, whose very first job was as job architect at the Cedars project is also still alive and well and living in west Sussex.

E Gostling Builders carried out many successful projects including their own developments and in 1977 a large party celebrated Frank Gostling's 50 year tenure.

Jack Gostling blames the Thatcher era for the demise of businesses such as his which finally wound up in the 1990s.

"We suffered an awful blow with the raising of the school leaving age to 16. Then as inflation started getting out of hand she saw the building industry as a regulator and turned the financial tap off on public sector building.''