Freeman Russ Craig
2nd July 1935 - 16th December 2019
Freeman Russ Craig sadly passed away at the Isabel Hospice, in Welwyn Garden City, on 16th December. He became a Freeman in the early 1990’s, by which time his wife, Carol, had already been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and this prevented him taking full advantage of membership of the Company. A close friend of Past Master, Dr Mervyn Miller, for many years, Russ attended the annual banquet in 2013 during Mervyn’s year as Master.
Born in Londonderry, Northern Ireland, Russ was educated at Liverpool University School of Architecture, where he also took a postgraduate diploma in Civic Design.
Russ had a distinguished career as a local government Architect, including the Greater London Council, and Hertfordshire County Council Planning Department, where he was recruited to the newly formed Design Section. He dealt with design and heritage applications across the North & East of the county, and for many years was convenor of the Architects’ Advisory Panel. Russ took over the devolved BEAMS organisation, which provided heritage & design advice to the Hertfordshire District Councils created in 1974. He notably oversaw the restoration of Place House, Ware, one of the most outstanding mediaeval timber-framed buildings in the county, for the Hertfordshire Building Preservation Trust.
Many organisations across Hertfordshire and RIBA Eastern Region, will have been enriched by Russ’s generosity of time, and unstinting help over many years. He will be sorely missed.
Donations in memory of Russ Craig can be made to either of the following two charities:
The East & North Hertfordshire Hospitals Charity
The Isabel Hospice
Details re the above can be found on the funeral directors’ tribute page for Russ on their website, www.burgessfunerals.co.uk
MICHAEL PETER WEST, MCD, BArch (L'pool), FRTPI, RIBA, FRSA
21 June 1939 – 13 November 2019
Post qualification at Liverpool University Michael took up appointments in private practice in the offices of Eric Lyons, Shankland Cox & Partners and Sir Hugh Wilson before a period in central and local government with appointments to principal posts with the Greater London Council and the City of Westminster. He then successively was Deputy Director of Planning to the Government of Bermuda and Director of the Central London Planning Conference, followed by six years as Borough Planner of the London Borough of Southwark.
In 1981 he returned to private practice with Twigg Brown & Partners, founding Twigg Brown West planning consultancy which, in 1992 was incorporated as West & Partners (in conjunction with Chris Francis and subsequently joined by Peter Long) a town planning and architectural practice. Michael made numerous expert witness appearances at public inquiries combining his town planning expertise with detailed experience of listed buildings and historic townscape also advising national and international clients on commercial, manufacturing, residential and public works projects.
A founding member of the Worshipful Company of Chartered Architects Michael was proud to be elected to serve as Master for 2001 – 2002, and directly afterwards to hold the office of Chairman of the Trustees of the Company’s Charitable Trust Fund for 15 years.
JOHN WHEATLEY - 30 AUGUST 30 – 18 AUGUST 2019
John Wheatley was one of the earliest members of the WCCA, attended the inaugural meeting at which the fledgling company was launched. His membership number was 10, he joined the Court within a year of its establishment and, following the grant of Livery in 1988, he quickly rose to be Master in 1990 being the first to do so who did not have connections with the City or another livery company. He died in a nursing home at the end of August after a period of increasing frailty.
John was a Director of the major commercial practice Covell Matthews Wheatley (formerly the Covell Matthews Partnership) who were one if the first practices to be listed on the London Stock Exchange when this became possible in 1987. He was responsible for a number of significant projects not just in the City but also in Reading and Cambridge. He would have been amused to know that, in recent years, his most notable building - the blue glass office headquarters building for Samuel Montagu Bank on a site adjacent the original Billingsgate Fish Market on Upper Thames Street- is to be found featured on a post card on sale in the RIBA bookshop. Other major projects included several business parks in the UK, Sony UK's headquarters at Brooklands, Weybridge and British Aerospace's headquarters on Farnborough Airfield.
The floated practice did not flourish and John retired to carry out modest developments on his own account on the south coast. He also made time to indulge his great love for modern classical music – a subject on which he was most knowledgeable to the extent that he was the guest on an episode of Private Passions on BBC3 and gave numerous talks. He was particularly interested in the relationship between music and architecture and the natural environment.
He was, by all accounts a good cricketer playing at just below county level in his native Essex and he was very good company in any social setting. John’s wife Pam died in 2009 and John is survived by their two children.