History

The article in the October 2012 edition of The Architectural Review by Will Hunter that launched the think tank Alternative Routes for Architecture (ARFA). The article carries a recent from-page story from the Evening Standard declaring: 'A degree in architecture and all I can get are menial jobs'
In the October 2012 edition of The Architectural Review, Will Hunter launched the think tank Alternative Routes for Architecture (ARFA), illustrated with a recent front-page story from the Evening Standard declaring: ‘A degree in architecture and all I can get are menial jobs’

From the outset, we have been a different type of educational enterprise from the majority of schools. We have grown from the bottom up. In 2012, Founder Will Hunter wrote an article called Alternative Routes for Architecture in the October edition of The Architectural Review (AR), in which he launched a think tank under the same name (abbreviated to ARFA) with the purpose of exploring new models of architectural education. A constellation of like-minded collaborators – and one or two critical voices – emerged to shape the project’s evolution.

A year later, Will published another piece in the October 2013 edition of the AR, which unveiled the London School of Architecture as an outline concept and sought architects to join in. Many made contact and a well-attended launch party was held at the Architecture Foundation in Southwark in November 2013. The following spring, the LSA sought formal Expressions of Interest to join its network; and to date some 55 of London’s leading and most interesting practitioners have signed up.

 

Elsie Owusu, Nigel Coates, Will Hunter, Clive Sall and Deborah Saunt (Picture: Matt Writtle, Evening Standard)
In March 2015, the Evening Standard launched the London School of Architecture as we opened for applications. Pictured are some of the LSA team: Elsie Owusu, Nigel Coates, Will Hunter, Clive Sall and Deborah Saunt

The LSA has been widely reported in industry titles and other media, including Archdaily, Dezeen, Archinect, the Architects’ Journal, Building DesignIcon, the Evening Standard, the Guardian and the Observer. In Uncube, Ellie Duffy wrote: ‘It is hoped the LSA will ensure that the UK architectural profession retains access to the widest pool of talent.’ The Royal Institute of British Architects welcomed the launch of the LSA, while the leader in BD said that ‘it deserves the profession’s full support’.

Other key figures have endorsed the school, such as architectural historian Charles Jencks, who writes that: ‘This integrated approach to education could produce some interesting and important architectural outcomes – it deserves every success.’

Sir Terry Farrell is also supportive: ‘The LSA is an intelligent response to the changing nature of both the architectural profession and the higher education sector. Its model proposes a deep engagement with contemporary urban and architectural issues, and offers a much more affordable route to becoming an architect. It has my full endorsement.’

 

Founders

Launching the London School of Architecture would not have be possible without the generous commitment of our Founders. We are extremely grateful for the early and continuing support of:

Founding Patrons
Niall Hobhouse
Crispin Kelly
Sir Terry Leahy
Nadja Swarovski


Founding Practices
Allford Hall Monaghan Morris
Grimshaw
Idom
Orms
PDP London
Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
Scott Brownrigg

Founding Benefactors
Richard Collins
Martin Halusa
Sir Peter Mason
Davina Mallinckrodt

Foundations
The Schroder Foundation
Garfield Weston Foundation

 

If you would like more information on how you may be able to support the school during the next phase of its foundation period, please contact our Director Will Hunter on will@the-lsa.org. The London School of Architecture is a charity registered in England and Wales with registered number 1159927

Supporters

Since 2012, the development of the school has benefited from the input of a wide range of enthusiastic advisers, consultants, advocates and friends to whom we owe a huge debt of gratitude: Aman Saundh, Barbara Ann Campbell-Lange, Ben Hayes, Charlotte Skene Catling, Eleanor Hill, Hannah Vowles, Isabel Allen, James Gare, Jane Wentworth, Joseph Deane, Katharine Heron, Lucy Musgrave, Matt Gaskin, Matthew Barac, Matthew Springett, Nadine Coetzee, Niall McLaughlin, Rhys Williams, Roz Barr, Sarah Ichioka, Simon Esterson, Stroud Cornock, Susannah Hagan, Theo Games Petrohilos and Tom Leahy.