Welcome to the Official Web Site of Trevor Dannatt
Trevor Dannatt, Royal Academician and former Professor of Architecture at the University of Manchester, was part of the wave of architects who qualified soon after the Second World War. Known both for his practical building work and his involvement, alongside contemporary and friend Colin St John Wilson, in the debate around the language of Modernism and the development of 'Humanist' architecture.
Trevor Dannatt has eschewed flamboyance for thoughtful and sensitive architecture whose subtleties and qualities reveal themselves over time. Generally using a limited palette of often traditional materials and range of forms, he works them into discreet but memorable buildings.
Born in 1920, he studied at the Regent’s Street Polytechnic. In 1943 he joined the legendary British modernist couple Maxwell Fry and Jane Drew, leaving them in 1948 to join his former tutor Peter Moro, who was associated architect with Sir Leslie Martin at the London County Council Architects Department, in charge of developing the Royal Festival Hall. This was the first significant public building in Britain to be designed in a modernist idiom, and was the only permanent structure associated with the Festival of Britain. In 1952, a year after its completion, Dannatt left the LCC and has been in private practice ever since, forming Trevor Dannatt and Partners in 1970 and then Dannatt Johnson in 1990.
Like many of his contemporaries he benefited from the opportunities which came from the Welfare State and particularly its expansion of education: he designed many school and university buildings, as well as private homes. In 1967, he won an international competition to design a conference centre, hotel and associated buildings in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. A few years after the successful completion, he received a notable commission in the 1980s for a new complex for the British Embassy, also in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. More recently, he oversaw the transformation of the Royal Naval College Buildings at Greenwich, one of the most distinguished groups of historic buildings in the UK, into accommodation for the University of Greenwich.
"Dannatt’s buildings are notable for both their excellence as examples of modern architecture and for being almost entirely socially driven."
– Stephen Gardiner, The Times
This website includes the transcript of a significant lecture given at the RIBA in 1969 – which is still relevant today to the practise of architecture. View the article