Tom Russell

Tom is an Architect and co-founder of Emmett Russell Architects, a Bristol based practice focusing on the design of housing, livable neighbourhoods and sustainable construction. He was born and raised in Bristol and completed a foundation art course at Bower Ashton before going on to study Architecture at Kings College, Cambridge. After graduating Tom worked in practice in Jamaica before continuing his post-graduate studies at Harvard and Cambridge Universities. His early practice career at Tony Fretton Architects in London focused on the design of buildings for the Arts and included projects for Artsway Visual Arts in Hampshire and the Quay Arts Centre on the Isle of Wight. After returning to Bristol Tom set up his own practice in 2001.

Tom’s work is particularly focused on the design of housing and neighbourhoods and explores how the design of the built environment can support the formation of strong communities. This often relates to the careful consideration of the relationship between buildings, public realm and shared space and how their design can enhance children’s freedom to play. Architecture is by its nature a collaborative process and each project emerges through conversations with a whole team of participants including architects, engineers, landscape designers, students, clients, community groups, contractors, specialist makers and end users. The practice has won a number of prestigious national and international design competitions and awards and has been widely published in architectural journals and national newspapers.

As well as his work in practice Tom has had considerable experience of teaching architecture and urban design at Cardiff University, Bath University and UWE in Bristol. He has lectured extensively and has held external examiner posts at Plymouth and De Montfort Universities. He has been a member of the Bristol Urban Design Forum and is a trustee of Design West. Website: