Paperback. 214 Pages: ISBN: 9781908867247

The Other Side of Eden

Jonathan Ball was born in Bude, Cornwall in June 1947 and after qualifying at the Architectural Association, London, set up in practice in his home town in 1974.
In 1992 he was appointed MBE for Services to Architecture. In 1994 he was approached by Tim Smit with an idea to create, in Cornwall, the largest greenhouses on planet earth to tell the story of the great plant hunters.
This is the story of how one phone call can change a life. Smit and Ball became the co-founders in an enterprise of innovation, vision and huge personal risk that became the internationally acclaimed Eden Project. But Jonathan was removed from the joys of Eden’s immense success against his will, losing the architectural practice that bore his name which he had built up over 25 years. Three high profile appearances in the Royal Courts of Justice in order to save his name, his family home and his professional reputation followed. This is the story of one man’s unflinching resolve to right a public wrong, of a Cornishman working, as any citizen might, looking to the glory of his county and his country and finding that enthusiasm, brilliant ideas and promises are not always enough.


This book recounts the trials and tribulations of the co-founder of the Eden Project, Jonathan Ball, in procuring the Eden Project for his native Cornwall. The reader cannot but be in awe of the dedication, enthusiasm and total commitment of the author only to be ousted against his will from the Project. Speaking from the heart Jonathan Ball tells of the personal cost and hardship he and his family endured, including three Court cases, in order to retrieve his good name, be re-installed as co-founder of the Eden Project and recoup his financial losses. For all who seek truth and justice this is an incredible and compelling book – read it and be inspired.


I coasted through your orchestration of Eden events whilst intrigued but horrified by the levels of complicity hidden within the project’s political, economic, social and technical domains.

The power of your lawyers’ unfailing belief that your Tim Smit agreement was between equals was spectacularly reinforced by Evelyn Thurlby’s honesty bullet being fired at and hitting the crumbling court defense. Her boldness must have brought her peace of mind.

Tim Smit and Druces and Atlee probably remain unforgiving.