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Wigglesworth becomes Royal Designer for Industry

Sarah Wigglesworth has become the first female architect to be appointed a Royal Designer for Industry

The creative force behind the Sandal Magna primary school in Wakefield joins design greats such as Robin and Lucienne Day, Terence Conran and Vivienne Westwood to be handed the award which recognises ‘sustained design excellence and work of aesthetic value’.

Only 200 people can be named Royal Designer for Industry (RDI) at any one time and there are just two other RDI titleholders for architecture at present: Peter Clegg and Ted Cullinan.

An ‘honoured’ Sarah Wigglesworth said: ‘Throughout my professional life I have worked hard to raise the profile of women in architecture, to encourage socially responsible and sustainable architecture and, as someone who combines running a practice with a busy academic career, to break down the barriers between practice and theory.’

I’ve worked hard to raise the profile of women in architecture

She added: ‘I hope to use the role as a platform to communicate the value of design, emphasising that good design helps improve our wellbeing, productivity, health and educational attainment, makes systems work smoothly and supports our identity as a civic society.’

The RDI was established in 1936 and is given out by the RSA.

Meanwhile Andrew Grant, founder and director of Bath-based Grant Associates and one of the masterminds behind the Gardens by the Bay in Singapore, has also been recognised by the RSA for his pioneering global work in sustainable and ecological landscape architecture. 

Wigglesworth and Grant are one of twelve new Royal Designers for Industry who will be handed their awards at a special ceremony to be held at the Royal Society of Arts (RSA) in London on Wednesday 14 November 2012

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