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RIAI Presents Honorary Membership and Fellowships to Primrose Wilson, John Cole and John Worthington

Published: Tuesday, December 11, 2018

L-r: RIAI President David Browne, RIAI Honorary Fellow John Cole, RIAI Honorary Member Primrose Wilson, RIAI Honorary Fellow John Worthington and RIAI CEO Kathryn Meghen

On 5 December 2018, the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland welcomed Primrose Wilson as a new RIAI Honorary Member and architects John Cole and John Worthington as new RIAI Honorary Fellows. RIAI Council awards Honorary Memberships to individuals from a wide range of professional backgrounds for their contribution to the built environment, while Honorary Fellowships are presented to those with an architectural background. RIAI CEO Kathryn Meghen said: “We are delighted to make these awards to recognise the contribution of colleagues and collaborators in driving excellence in the built environment”.

RIAI President David Browne and RIAI Honorary Member Primrose Wilson

In awarding the Honorary Membership to Primrose Wilson, CBE, for her contribution to architectural conservation, RIAI President David Browne said: “For many years Primrose Wilson has made, and continues to make, a major contribution to the advancement of architectural conservation on the island of Ireland. She has played a significant role as a communicator, advocate and enabler in cultivating positive and constructive cross-border relationships. This contribution is reflected in her commitment and achievements as Chairman of the Ulster Architectural Heritage Society and Founder and Chairman of the Follies Trust. Primrose Wilson initiated and organised European Heritage Open Days (EHOD) from 1997-2001. The ‘Home and Dry’ programme, which she ran over several years in counties north and south of the border, brought together professionals, building owners and local communities around ostensibly simple issues such as maintenance, but has had profound benefits and legacies, including a greater awareness of a shared heritage.” The Citation for Primrose Wilson was read by Architect James Howley, FRIAI.

RIAI President David Browne and RIAI Honorary Fellow John Cole

Professor John Cole, CBE, received an Honorary Fellowship from the RIAI for his long-term commitment to raise the quality of healthcare procurement”.  RIAI President David Browne said: “Through his career, John Cole has been a health design and procurement champion with his understanding of the link between the quality of designed environments and health. This has been part of his day-to-day practice throughout his career. He is recognised for his long-term efforts to raise the quality of healthcare procurement in Northern Ireland and the local healthcare estates framework would seem to be continuing his drive for quality and fair fee levels. A key aspect of his work was the development and establishment of best practice procurement methods for both publicly and privately funded projects aimed at protecting design quality and delivering optimum solutions in terms of clinical effectiveness, functionality, and value-for-money.” John Cole is an Architect by profession and held the posts of Chief Executive of the Health Estates Agency (2003-2008) and latterly Deputy Secretary and Chief Estates Officer DHSSPS (2008-2013). In these roles he was responsible for the procurement of many major health facilities in Northern Ireland – from major regional centres of excellence and new acute hospitals to community hospitals, mental health facilities and primary and community health buildings. The Citation for Primrose Wilson was read by RIAI Vice President and Architect Claire White, MRIAI.

RIAI President David Browne and RIAI Honorary Fellow Prof John Worthington

Professor John Worthington received an Honorary Fellowship for his “contribution to excellence in design thinking, architecture and urbanism and for his contribution to architectural education and the architectural profession both in Ireland and abroad”. David Browne praised John Worthington’s achievements as an “internationally recognized urban strategist who identifies solutions to complex challenges around the integration of new facilities within existing urban fabrics”. John’s career spans five decades, combines academia and practice in spatial planning and organizational design, and involves forging partnerships between sectors, projects and people. Since co-founding the architectural and space planning consultancy DEGW in 1973, John has been invited by city governments, developers, design firms and academic institutions to pioneer planning methods for the knowledge economy. Projects include Stockley International Business Park, Heathrow (1983-2008); chairing panels to advise on innovation for high-rise building strategies for the cities of Rotterdam (1999-2005) and Dublin (2000-2011); and enhancing public realm connections at Utrecht Central Station (1998-2001). “The unifying theme throughout John’s varied career is that of design as a way of thinking. John has contributed to this agenda across the full range of scales – from the chair to the city”, concluded David Browne.

In October the RIAI also awarded an Honorary Fellowship to the Danish Architect and Urbanist Jan Gehl, whose career has focused on improving the quality of urban life by re-orienting city design towards the pedestrian and cyclist, and an Honorary Membership to the President of the Venice Biennale, Paolo Baratta for his “contribution to the quality of architectural design and the built environment through his dedication to La Biennale di Venezia over many years”. Paris-based Architect Odile Decq received an Honorary Fellowship for her “contribution to architecture and the built environment and for promoting diversity in the profession” in Dublin on 27 November on the occasion of delivering the RIAI’s inaugural The Groundbreaker lecture.

For further information and photographs, please contact: Dr. Sandra O'Connell, Director of Communications, soconnell@riai.ie, T 016691474.

About the RIAI
Founded in 1839, the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland supports and regulates the architectural profession and promotes the value that architecture brings to society for everyone’s benefit. Follow us on Twitter for regular updates: @RIAIonline

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