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Obituary: Gareth Hoskins (1967-2016)

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Renowned Scottish architect Gareth Hoskins has died following a heart attack, aged just 48

Described as ‘one Scotland’s brightest young stars’, the Glasgow-based architect and founder of Hoskins Architects died in Edinburgh Royal Infirmary on Saturday (9 January). He suffered the attack during a fencing tournament and had been kept in an induced coma.

Hoskins trained as an architect at the Glasgow School of Art and at Florence University, setting up his own practice in Glasgow in 1998 after spending six years working at Penoyre & Prasad in London.

Last year the practice rebranded, changing its name from Gareth Hoskins Architects to Hoskins Architects. The new identity was partly in recognition of the growing workload at its Berlin office.

The 40-strong practice has worked on a number of high-profile projects, including the V&A, the first-ever Scottish Pavilion at the Venice Biennale and the £47 million redevelopment of the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.

In 2011 the National Museum of Scotland scheme won the RIAS Doolan Prize for the best building in Scotland – an award for which the practice has been named a finalist five times. The firm had been working on the huge project since 2004, when it was announced as masterplanner and commissioned to provide a 15-year plan for the building.

Hoskins’ practice is currently working on several prominent projects, including a £5.8 million new headquarters for the National Theatre of Scotland, the £30 million redevelopment of Aberdeen Art Gallery and a controversial plan to convert Edinburgh’s historic Royal High School into 147-room hotel, the first proposals for which were rejected in December (see AJ 17.12.15).

Hoskins sat on design review panels for Architecture and Design Scotland and held the post of the Scottish Government’s National Healthcare Design Champion from 2006 to 2010.

He was named Young Architect of the Year in 2000, then Architect of the Year in 2006 and in 2009 Scottish Architect of the Year.

In 2008 he was made a fellow of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland and the following year he was elected to the Royal Scottish Academy.

Hoskins was recognised with an OBE for services to architecture in 2010.

He was a rare combination of design talent and business acumen

Chris Coleman-Smith, a co-director of Hoskins Architects, said: ’Everyone at Hoskins Architects has lost an exceptional architect, a visionary and a gifted leader, but above all a very good friend. Gareth leaves a huge gap, he was such a special person. We appreciate the very many messages of condolence that have already been received.’

Alan Dunlop described the news as ‘shocking’, adding: ‘My immediate thoughts are for his family and his team. Gareth was without doubt one of the pre-eminent architects of our generation and he will be missed.

‘Above all he was a rare combination of design talent and business acumen and a strong advocate for the profession.’

There will be a private family funeral and a memorial service for Gareth is planned to be held at a later date. He leaves a young family.

Completed projects

Mareel Arts Centre by Gareth Hoskins Architects

Mareel Arts Centre by Gareth Hoskins Architects

Source: John Coutts

2012 Mareel Arts Centre, Lerwick

National Museum of Scotland by Hoskins Architects

National Museum of Scotland by Hoskins Architects

Source: Andrew Lee

2011 National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh

Marlaw by Hoskins Architects

Marlaw by Hoskins Architects

2011 Marlaw, Glasgow

Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre by Hoskins Architects

Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre by Hoskins Architects

Source: Nigel Rigden

2007 Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre, Inverness

The Bridge by Hoskins Architects

The Bridge by Hoskins Architects

Source: Andrew Lee

2006 The Bridge, Glasgow

Robin House Childrens Hospice by Hoskins Architects

Robin House Childrens Hospice by Hoskins Architects

Source: Tim Soar

2005 Robin House Children’s Hospice, Alexandria

Sandy Road Clinic by Hoskins Architects

Sandy Road Clinic by Hoskins Architects

Source: John Cooper

2004 Sandy Road Clinic, Glasgow

Tributes

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Readers' comments (1)

  • What a loss. Gareth was a talented designer and a great innovator. Always enthusiastic, always pressing for excellence. He was a shrewd strategist and built a solid business but this did not dilute his commitment to making an architecture that was personable, crafted and intelligent. One of the brightest stars in Scotland. Malcolm Reading

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