'In 1978 after a very short career working for others I set up in practice with Richard Feilden. Our architectural principles recognised, even then, the importance of energy use in the buildings and the need to design a built environment that could create and enhance a sense of community. These social and environmental core values are still at the centre of Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios’ work in architecture and urban design after nearly 45 years.
My own work has focused on the cultural and educational sectors of architectural design, and it has been a privilege to have been involved with the Yorkshire Sculpture Park for more than 25 years and to have developed a masterplan for the site and delivered the first two buildings there. Currently I see this extraordinary institution from the other side, being Chair of Trustees. In 2007 FCBStudios won an international competition to design a new gallery for the Leventis Foundation in Cyprus which houses the collection of A.G Leventis, but also showcases the work of contemporary Cypriot artists. We have also renovated the Hayward Gallery and the Queen Elizabeth Hall at Southbank Centre under Jude Kelly, and we are working on the next phase of the Ashmolean with Xa Sturgis.
I have always been interested in the creative use of existing buildings for cultural purposes. In the late 1980s we worked with Peter Gabriel to convert a series of post-industrial mill buildings to form Real World Studios in Box, near Bath. More recently we renovated the old theatre in the East Wing of Alexandra Place and shortly we will be reopening the Brighton Corn Exchange theatre in the Prince Regent’s riding school in Brighton. We have also been appointed to deliver the new British Library of the North to be located in a remarkable 1838 flax mill near the centre of Leeds.
Over many years we have tried to produce exemplar buildings which address the need to minimise carbon emissions from the built environment. The most successful include the Headquarters of the National Trust in Swindon, and an all-timber building for the HQ of the Woodland Trust in Grantham. One of the most successful low carbon buildings we have completed has been the City and University Library in Worcester which set new targets for both embodied and operational carbon in a major new public building.
It has been a privilege to have been a Professor of Architecture at Bath University School of Architecture and Civil Engineering for the last 20 years and to have contributed to what is regarded as one of the most significant schools in the country. FCBStudios has partnered in research projects with Universities in Bath, UCL and Liverpool, in particular looking at the environmental aspects of architectural design.
I am very proud to have been a founding partner of a practice that has gone on to win the Stirling Prize for the Accordia Housing scheme in Cambridge but has also won more RIBA awards than any other practice in history.
In 2007 we set up the Feilden Foundation in memory of my late partner Richard Feilden and we are actively involved in promoting better architecture for schools in East Africa through designing and building small scale school projects but also publishing guidance on better design for schools to improve both education and the sustainability of the buildings.'
Gallery Images (from left)
- Accordia Cambridge © Tim Crocker
- Alexandra Palace © Lloyd Winters for Alexandra Palace
- Hayward Gallery Rooflights Southbank Centre © Morley von Sternberg
- Heelis National Trust © Simon Doling
- Leventis Art Gallery Cyprus © Hufton + Crow
- QEH Southbank Centre © Tony Birch
- QEH Foyer Southbank Centre © Hufton + Crow
- The Hive Worcester Library © Hufton + Crow
- Yorkshire Sculpture Park Underground Gallery © Dennis Gilbert
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