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Whilst Venice is said to be in a state of Eligant Decay, in the case Murano with its aging industrial buildings it is just decay.

OK so it was tipping it down with rain the whole time we were there, and there was an Acqua Alta, so it was not looking at its best. But compared to Venice, Murano has little to commend it architecturally.

It has been a centre of glass making since 1291 when the furnaces and craftsmen were moved here because of the risk of fire and the effects of smoke. It became the principal glass producing area of Europe during the 15th and 16th centuries, but lost out to eastern European cut and engraved glass in later centuries.

Given the competition from cheap Chinese imports, and the difficulties in recruiting young people into the trade, it is perhaps not surprising that the glass salesmen can get a little over enthusiastic.

There are some horrific stories out there of people, who have taken up an offer of a free taxi ride from St Mark's Square and a factory tour, being held virtually captive until they bought an expensive piece of glass.

All I can say is that we travelled by vaporetto, and were invited in for a glass blowing demonstration at La Vetreria Linea Murano Art on Fondamenta Daniele Manin.

After the demonstration for which a small donation was requested, the salesman was very attentive until he established that were were not in the market for a very beautiful 350 vase but might stretch to a 10 souvenir, at which point we parted on friendly terms.