Episode 27 – Jonathan Darke

Our guest this week is the architect Jonathan Darke.

Jonathan was born to British Parents in Pennsylvania in the USA. His father’s work as a Civil Engineer led him and the family to move extensively throughout his childhood, living amongst other places in Iran and Pakistan.

Later, back in the UK, Jonathan studied architecture at the University of Brighton and then at London Metropolitan University.  

Jonathan Darke. Image courtesy of the practice

He worked for a while under the highly influential architect Florian Beigel then going on to work for Nicholas Lacey Jobst & Hyett. He later moved to to Stillman & Eastwick-Field, a practice with a strong reputation for their work on schools and hospitals. 

During his 18 years at the practice he went on to become Managing Partner, before the then 25-strong practice merged in 2004 with the architecture practice TP Bennett to become their health and education team.

TP Bennett was founded in 1921 by Sir Thomas Bennett and is now one of the ten largest architecture practices in the UK.  Sir Thomas rose to prominence for his work on the New Towns of Crawley and Stevenage, and later the vast Grade II listed Smithfield Market.  But the practice’s more recent work includes a complete redesign of Sir Giles Gilbert Scott’s Guildhall North Wing for the City of London Corporation, as well as extensive renovation work on the iconic Sea Containers House on the River Thames.

For this week’s episode I joined Jonathan in TP Bennett’s offices in Southwark.