Design guru Sadie Morgan has been appointed to the board of Homes England
The co-founder of Stirling Prize-winning practice dRMM is one of four people joining the leadership committee of the government’s non-departmental housing accelerator with immediate effect.
Morgan plays a key role in championing design in public and private projects, and currently fulfils a number of big roles.
She is chair of the independent design panel for High Speed 2; one of 10 National Infrastructure Commissioners; professor of professional practice at the University of Westminster; a non-executive director of both the Major Projects Association and developer U + I; and a Mayor of London design advocate.
She is also setting up a Quality of Life Foundation to encourage developers to prioritise wellbeing in their projects.
DRMM’s rejuvenation of Hastings Pier was hailed as an exemplar of community-focused regeneration when it scooped British architecture’s most prestigious award in 2017.
Morgan said of her latest appointment: ‘As part of the board’s agenda to build more sustainable and high-quality houses, my energy will be focused on delivering homes for people and places.
‘I understand how vital the role of Homes England is to help house our nation, and I am committed to ensuring we do so and to deliver a quality of life everyone deserves.’
Also joining the Homes England board are Nationwide Building Society finance director Mark Rennison, Orchard Global Asset Management chief operating officer Olivia Scanlon and Lloyds Banking Group chief operating officer for retail Vanessa Murden, taking its overall membership to 13.
Homes England this summer reported the highest annual number of houses starting on site for nine years.
In a wide-ranging interview after she was presented with this year’s AJ100 Contribution to the Profession Award, Morgan told the AJ that undergoing treatment for cancer three years ago had spurred her on further in her life and career.
‘I said that if I stay alive, [cancer] will be the best thing that ever happened to me,’ she said. ‘It totally changes your perspective. You suddenly realise that the world is a very precious place and you should work hard to contribute in some way to it.’