I am delighted to report, three new Court Assistants were welcomed at the Installation Court meeting on 22nd September 2020 Karen Cook, Ben Derbyshire and Luke Tozer. They are all inspiring leaders of the architectural profession, as shown in their biographies:
KAREN COOK, Founding Partner PLP Architecture
Karen is one of five founding partners and her experience extends from London across Europe to Paris, Berlin and Prague, where her work has focussed on the workplace sector and public realms.
She is leading the design for the tallest tower in the City of London, 22 Bishopsgate, which is now under construction for Lipton Rogers Developments and AXA IM-Real Assets. The project proposes innovative solutions to improve the pedestrian experience, with shared amenities creating a workplace to attract talented individuals, nestled below London’s highest free-to-access public observatory.
Karen is the design partner of our new building at 4 Cannon Street, which houses the financial services company, Fidelity, in a red sandstone structure on an extremely sensitive site opposite St. Paul’s Cathedral. Public realm improvements played a big part of this project and a new public garden faces the historic St. Nicholas Cole Abbey.
For our new UK headquarters for Qatar Airways in Mayfair, she helped lead a design that has rethought an urban site along Conduit Street into a bold yet sensitive architectural statement that reflects the company’s goals and values.
In Paris, Karen led one of seven teams selected from over seven hundred applicants for the re-imagining of the Tour Montparnasse from a dated and inefficient eyesore into a twenty-first century working environment.
Also in France, Karen led the design of Tour First in La Défense, the tallest tower in France and the first to receive a sustainability rating, whose dynamic new top transforms the local skyline. Her award-winning Danube House in Prague was enriched by local craft and its dramatic interior spaces open the James Bond film “Casino Royale.”
Karen’s designs have been exhibited at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, and the Centre Pompidou, Paris. She spoke at the Royal Academy Mavericks programme, “After the Age of Starchitects”, and at the ULI France convention in Paris on “Le Droit à l’Hypercentre.”
Karen obtained a Bachelor of Architecture and a Bachelor of Art (Art and Architecture) from Rice University, and a Master of Architecture from Harvard University. Karen is a Court Assistant in the Worshipful Company of Chartered Architects and sits on the Board of the City Property Association. She has an interest in culture and language including French and German.
BEN DERBYSHIRE, Chair, HTA Design LLP
Ben Derbyshire is Chair of HTA Design LLP. A member of the practice since 1976 and a partner since 1986, Ben became a main board director when the practice incorporated in 1998 and was appointed Managing Director of HTA Architects Ltd in 2005. Ben became Chair and Managing Partner of HTA Design LLP when it was formed in 2013 until 2016 and now acts as its Chair. He has built up broad-ranging expertise through involvement in much of HTA’s work in regeneration, masterplanning, housing and mixed-use design across all sectors. Ben leads the practice’s internal design review processes and heads up its marketing effort.
HTA Design LLP is a design consultancy to the home building industry specialising in Creative Collaboration between its multidisciplinary team, clients, communities and other professionals.
In 2020 the Practice won numerous awards, including:
Ben Derbyshire is Immediate Past President of RIBA. He was elected onto Council in 2014, becoming President Elect in August 2016 and serving as President from September 2017 to August 2019. The RIBA is a global professional membership body driving excellence in architecture. It serves members and society in order to deliver better buildings and places, stronger communities and a sustainable environment.
Ben is a Commissioner at Historic England. He was appointed in September 2019 for a period of four years. Historic England is the public body that helps people care for, enjoy and celebrate England’s spectacular historic environment.
Ben is a member of New London Sounding Board, the advisory Board to New London Architecture. New London Architecture is a membership organisation devoted to bringing People Together to Shape a Better City.
Ben is a Court Assistant in the Worshipful Company of Chartered Architects.
LUKE TOZER, Director, Pitman Tozer Architects Ltd
Pitman Tozer Architects was founded by Tim Pitman and Luke Tozer in 2002, who continue to grow in their West London studio with great success. The firm have an un-waivered expertise in contemporary sustainable design and creating beautiful low-energy buildings. They were critically acclaimed for The Gap House, a narrow new-build terraced London townhouse which won the prestigious RIBA Manser Medal in 2009, and that’s now home for Luke Tozer. Since then they have developed a reputation for designing and delivering elegant and practical housing on complicated, heavily constrained sites.
Tim Pitman and Luke Tozer are friends, they trained together and then shared a flat in Trellick Tower in Notting Hill, before becoming business partners. They both have a shared love of architecture and had one eye on the future and the way an evolving world would affect the industry that they wanted to work in. The practice grew from there. Luke and Tim always knew they would have a dedication to quality and the emphasis is very much on realizing client aspirations and creating a great body of work rather than growing the practice. Today, Pitman Tozer is a studio of energetic, engaged and curious architects. The Practice co-create schemes, each with a distinctive identity, borne out of considered research into the social, cultural and environmental nature of a place. Its approach is inclusive, collaborative and responsive and this is reflected in two if it’s most recent award-winning housing developments:
• Monier Road, a new build development for Peabody,
comprising 71 homes in three blocks with commercial workspace on the ground floor, and
• The Reach, a 5,700m2 residential-led mixed use development for Peabody
Luke studied architecture at the Glasgow School of Art and undertook a Master’s degree at the University of Cambridge. He is a Court Assistant in the Worshipful Company of Chartered Architects.
Valerie Owen Le Vaillant OBE
BSc BArch RIBA Dip TP MRTPI MRICS ACIArb FRSA CEnv
Master, Worshipful Company of Chartered Architects.