Famous British Architects

Architecture is a visual art that is inspired from creativity and inventiveness. An architect is concerned with building architectural marvels that are designed for the present with an awareness of the past for a future that is unknown. It is a reflection of the traditional culture of the place and the imagery of contemporary future. When you talk about visiting a country, you mostly mean exploring its architectural wonders that lets you peep into the historic past and gives you an essence of the rich heritage and the culture that the country uniquely possesses. United Kingdom has a multitude of architectural wonders that have played an instrumental role in the British past and till date stand tall, reviving the glorious heritage. Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Kensington Palace, Windsor Castle, Palace of Westminster, Tower of London and London Bridge are few of the many architectural wonders that United Kingdom boasts of. But UK is not all about archaeological sites. It has numerous contemporary buildings that have casted a strong impact on the current landscape of the country such as The Shard which is the tallest building in United Kingdom and ranks fourth in Europe. However, none of that would have existed, had it not been for the visionary architects of Britain! It is to these architects that we dedicate this section. Find out more about famous British architects, their life and their creative outbursts.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 
Zaha Hadid
(Architect)

Zaha Hadid
10
Birthdate: October 31, 1950
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Baghdad
Died: March 31, 2016
Baghdad-born British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid is best remembered for her revolutionary and modern architectural designs, that involved abstraction and relied on curves. She won the Stirling Prize and was the first woman to receive the Pritzker Prize. She designed the Guangzhou Opera House and Rome's MAXXI Museum, among other marvels.

 2 

Sir Christopher Wren
5
Birthdate: October 20, 1632
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: East Knoyle
Died: February 25, 1723

Architect Sir Christopher Wren had built over 50 churches in London, the most popular of them being the St. Paul’s Cathedral. He was a major force behind the formation of the Royal Society and was also knighted for his achievements. He was also a member of the English Parliament.

 3 
Norman Foster
(Architect)

Norman Foster
4
Birthdate: June 1, 1935
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Stockport, Cheshire, England

Norman Foster is an English designer and architect best known for his association with the progression of high-tech architecture. Regarded as an important personality in British modernist architecture, Foster has been granted several prestigious honors like The Lynn S. Beedle Lifetime Achievement Award. He also serves as the president of the Norman Foster Foundation which aims at helping young architects.

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 4 
Robert Hooke
(Philosopher)

Robert Hooke
4
Birthdate: July 28, 1635
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Freshwater, Isle of Wight
Died: March 3, 1703

Scientist Robert Hooke, also called England's Leonardo, initially gained recognition as an architect, conducting surveys following the Great Fire of London. He also taught geometry and was part of the Royal Society. He assisted Robert Boyle and eventually developed his own microscope, thus becoming the first to visualize micro-organisms.

Charles Rennie Mackintosh
4
Birthdate: June 7, 1868
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Townhead, Glasgow, United Kingdom
Died: December 10, 1928

Charles Rennie Mackintosh was a Scottish architect, designer, and artist. He was married to fellow artist Margaret Macdonald, and they both were influential on the European design movements Art Nouveau and Secessionism. Mackintosh is considered one of the most important figures of Modern Style (British Art Nouveau style). In his later years, he worked largely as a watercolorist. 

 6 
Capability Brown
(Horticulturist, Architect, Landscape architect)

Capability Brown
4
Birthdate: August 30, 1716
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Northumberland
Died: February 6, 1783

Capability Brown was an English landscape architect and gardener. Regarded as the most popular figure in English landscape garden style history, Brown is also considered England's greatest gardener by many. Capability Brown is credited with designing more than 170 parks. His work had such an impact that the contributions of his predecessors William Kent and Charles Bridgeman are often overlooked.

 7 
Anish Kapoor
(Sculpture known for works like Cloud Gate in Chicago and Sky Mirror in New York, he won the Premio Duemila Prize in 1990 and the Turner Prize in 1991.)

Anish Kapoor
4
Birthdate: March 12, 1954
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Mumbai, Maharashtra, india

Born in India, sculptor Anish Kapoor initially studied engineering in Israel but soon quit his studies to study art in Britain. The Turner Prize-winning artist was the first living artist to earn a solo show at London’s Royal Academy of Arts. The Cloud Gate in Chicago remain his best-loved work.

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 8 
Joseph Bazalgette
(Civil engineer)

Joseph Bazalgette
5
Birthdate: March 28, 1819
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Enfield, London, England
Died: March 15, 1891

British civil engineer Joseph Bazalgette was the man behind the development of the sewage system of London. He was later knighted for his achievements and had also served as the president of the Institution of Civil Engineers. Another notable work of his was the Hammersmith Bridge.

 9 
Gertrude Jekyll
(Horticulturist, Painter, Gardener, Non-fiction writer, Botanist, Architect)

Gertrude Jekyll
5
Birthdate: November 29, 1843
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: London
Died: December 8, 1932

Landscape architect Gertrude Jekyll was born into an affluent family and grew up in a refined environment, learning music and traveling. Initially interested in painting, she gave it up to focus on gardening when she developed eyesight problems. She built around 400 gardens and also collaborated with Sir Edwin Lutyens.

 10 
Augustus Pugin
(Architect)

Augustus Pugin
4
Birthdate: March 1, 1812
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bloomsbury, London, England
Died: September 14, 1852

Augustus Pugin was an English designer, architect, artist, and critic. He is best remembered for his contribution to the Gothic Revival style of architecture. He is credited with designing the interior of the popular Palace of Westminster in London as well as the palace's iconic clock tower. Augustus Pugin also designed the Alton Castle in Staffordshire.

 11 
Richard Rogers
(Architect, Politician)

Richard Rogers
4
Birthdate: July 23, 1933
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Florence, Italy
Died: December 18, 2021

Richard Rogers is an Italian-British architect best known for his functionalist and modernist designs in high-tech architecture. Rogers is recognized for his work on popular buildings like Lloyd's building in London, the Pompidou Centre in Paris, and the building of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. He is the recipient of many awards, including the Thomas Jefferson Medal. 

 12 
David Adjaye
(architect)

David Adjaye
3
Birthdate: September 22, 1966
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Dar es Salaam

David Adjaye is a Ghanaian-British architect known for designing several noteworthy buildings like the National Museum of African American History and Culture, which is located on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. In 2021, Adjaye became one of the youngest and the first African architect to be honored with the Royal Gold Medal by the Royal Institute of British Architects.

 13 
Inigo Jones
(Architect)

Inigo Jones
4
Birthdate: July 15, 1573
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Smithfield, London
Died: June 21, 1652

Inigo Jones was a British architect who played an important role in the early modern period. Regarded as England's first significant architect in the said period, Jones was the first person to make use of Vitruvian rules of symmetry and proportion in his buildings. He was also the first architect to introduce the architecture of the Italian Renaissance to Britain.

 14 
Thomas Heatherwick
(Architect, Sculptor, Designer)

Thomas Heatherwick
3
Birthdate: February 17, 1970
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London

The founder of the London-based architecture firm Heatherwick Studio, Thomas Heatherwick is best known for his works such as the Seed Cathedral for the 2010 Shanghai Expo’s UK Pavilion and the 2012 Olympic Cauldron. A descendant of the owners of fashion brand Jaeger, he studied 3-D design and revolutionized architecture.

Tessa Kennedy
4
Birthdate: December 6, 1938
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Guildford

Tessa Kennedy is a British interior designer who works for prominent hotels, restaurants, multi-national corporations, clubs, celebrities, and royalty. She is credited with establishing her own company Tessa Kennedy Design, Ltd., which has received many design accolades. Tessa Kennedy made headlines in 1957 when she eloped with English portrait painter Bede Evelyn Dominick Elwes.

 16 
Edwin Lutyens
(Architect)

Edwin Lutyens
4
Birthdate: March 29, 1869
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kensington, London, England, United Kingdom
Died: January 1, 1944

Known for his planning of the city of New Delhi, the capital of India, English architect Edwin Lutyens had also built many English buildings, including war memorials and country houses. An area in Delhi has been named after him. Among his notable works was the Viceroy's House, which is now the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

 17 

Giles Gilbert Scott
3
Birthdate: November 9, 1880
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Hampstead, Middlesex, England
Died: February 8, 1960

Giles Gilbert Scott was a British architect best remembered for his work on popular edifices like the New Bodleian Library, Liverpool Cathedral, Battersea Power Station, and Cambridge University Library. He is also credited with designing the archetypical red telephone box.

 18 
Robert Trent Jones
(Golf course Architect)

Robert Trent Jones
3
Birthdate: June 20, 1906
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ince-in-Makerfield, United Kingdom
Died: June 14, 2000

Robert Trent Jones had designed more than 250 golf courses across 40 countries. Born in England, he moved to the U.S. and later worked as a caddie. He began by designing the golf course at Cornell, his alma, and his name is now a trademark in the golf circuit.

 19 
Joseph Paxton
(Gardener & Architect)

Joseph Paxton
3
Birthdate: August 3, 1803
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bedfordshire
Died: June 8, 1865

Landscape gardener Joseph Paxton initially worked for the duke of Devonshire, serving as a head gardener at the duke’s Chatsworth estate. However, his greatest contribution perhaps remains the Crystal Palace for the 1851 Great Exhibition in London. He also represented Coventry as a member of parliament.

 20 
John Soane
(Architect, Archaeologist)

John Soane
3
Birthdate: September 10, 1753
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Reading
Died: January 20, 1837

English architect John Soane contributed immensely to the Neo-Classical style of architecture. Born to a bricklayer, Soane began training as an architect at 15. He soared to fame during his 45-year stint as an architect of the Bank of England and was also knighted for his achievements.

 21 
Herbert Baker
(Architect, Screenwriter)

Herbert Baker
3
Birthdate: June 9, 1862
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Owletts
Died: February 4, 1946

Herbert Baker was a British architect best remembered for shaping South African architecture during the 1890s and 1900s. He is also credited with designing some of the most notable government buildings in New Delhi. His work in Delhi, which includes the Parliament House and Viceroy's House, played a major role in establishing the city as the capital of British India.

 22 
Ebenezer Howard
(Urban planner)

Ebenezer Howard
4
Birthdate: January 29, 1850
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: May 1, 1928

Ebenezer Howard was a British urban planner best remembered for his book Garden Cities of To-morrow. The book gave rise to the establishment of the garden city movement, which in turn influenced the development of several garden cities like Letchworth Garden City and Welwyn Garden City.

 23 
Charles Barry
(Architect)

Charles Barry
3
Birthdate: May 23, 1795
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: London, England
Died: May 12, 1860

Architect Sir Charles Barry was one of the significant figures of the Gothic Revival in England and is best known for his work on the rebuilding of the Palace of Westminster, or the Houses of Parliament. He also built King Edward’s School, the Athenaeum, and several gardens, among other major structures.

 24 

George Gilbert Scott
3
Birthdate: July 13, 1811
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Gawcott, England
Died: March 27, 1878

George Gilbert Scott was a British architect best remembered for his contribution to the Gothic Revival style of architecture. Scott is credited with designing and altering over 800 buildings, including several churches and cathedrals. He served as the architect of several iconic edifices like The St. Pancras Renaissance London Hotel, The Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and St Mary's Cathedral, Glasgow.

John Nash (Architect)
3
Birthdate: January 18, 1752
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: London Borough of Lambeth
Died: May 13, 1835

John Nash was a British architect of the Regency and Georgian eras, during which he designed several prominent areas of London using the picturesque and neoclassical styles. He is best remembered for designing popular edifices like Buckingham Palace, Marble Arch, and the Royal Pavilion. Nash also taught many future architects like John Adey Repton and James Pain.

 26 

Nicholas Hawksmoor
3
Birthdate: 1661 AD
Birthplace: Nottinghamshire
Died: March 25, 1736

Nicholas Hawksmoor was a major figure of the Baroque style of architecture in England. He collaborated with prominent architects of the time, such as Sir John Vanbrugh and Sir Christopher Wren, and also served as one of the chief architects of Westminster Abbey. His independent projects include six churches in London.

 27 
John Vanbrugh
(Architect)

John Vanbrugh
3
Birthdate: January 24, 1664
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: March 26, 1726

Apart from being a Baroque-style architect, John Vanbrugh was also a well-known dramatist of the Restoration era. His works include the iconic The Provoked Wife and The Relapse, or, Virtue in Danger. His most-loved designs include Lord Carlisle’s Castle Howard in Yorkshire. A staunch Whig, he was also part of the Kit-Cat Club.

 28 
David Chipperfield
(Architect, University teacher)

David Chipperfield
3
Birthdate: December 18, 1953
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: London

David Chipperfield is a British architect best known for designing buildings like the River and Rowing Museum in Oxfordshire and the Saint Louis Art Museum in Missouri. He is also credited with establishing an architectural practice named David Chipperfield Architects, which has offices in London, Milan, Berlin, and Shanghai. Chipperfield has won many awards, including the Wolf Prize in Arts.

 29 
James Stirling
(Greatest architects of the latter 20th century and was known for drawing from all of architectural history)

James Stirling
4
Birthdate: April 22, 1926
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Glasgow, United Kingdom
Died: June 25, 1992

James Stirling was a British architect best remembered for his collaboration with fellow architects, James Gowan and Michael Wilford. Stirling is credited with overseeing prestigious projects like the University of Cambridge's History Faculty Library. Over the course of his illustrious career, James Stirling was honored with several prestigious awards, such as the Pritzker Prize and the Alvar Aalto Medal.

 30 

Benjamin Henry Latrobe
3
Birthdate: May 1, 1764
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Fulneck Moravian Settlement, England
Died: September 3, 1820
Benjamin Henry Latrobe was a British-American neoclassical architect and civil engineer who established architecture as a profession in the United States. He was the most original proponent of the Greek Revival style in American buildings. His most famous works include Basilica of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Roman Catholic cathedral of Baltimore, Exchange and others. 

 31 
William Burges
(Architect)

William Burges
3
Birthdate: December 2, 1827
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: London
Died: April 20, 1881

William Burges was a British architect and designer best remembered for building castles like Cardiff Castle and Castell Coch. Apart from designing castles, churches, and houses, William Burges also designed sculptures, metalwork, furniture, jewelry, and stained glass.

 32 
Michael Ventris
(Architect, classicist and philologist who deciphered Linear B, the ancient Mycenaean Greek script)

Michael Ventris
3
Birthdate: July 12, 1922
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Wheathampstead, Hertfordshire, England
Died: September 6, 1956

Apart from being a renowned architect, Michael Ventris was also a skilled cryptographer. He not only deciphered the Minoan Linear B script, but also linked it to the ancient Greek script. As an architect, he was commissioned by the Ministry of Education to design schools. He died in a car crash at 34.

 33 
Alison Smithson
(Architect)

Alison Smithson
3
Birthdate: June 22, 1928
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sheffield, Yorkshire, England
Died: August 14, 1993

Alison Smithson was one half of the renowned British architect duo Alison and Peter Smithson, the other half of which was her husband. They contributed immensely to the New Brutalism, or British Brutalism, style of architecture and also popularized themes such as streets in the sky.

Peter Cook (Architect)
3
Birthdate: October 22, 1936
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Southend-on-Sea

Architect Peter Cook is known as a co-founder of the avant-garde group of architects known as Archigram. One of his best-known ideas, as part of Archigram, was The Plug-In City, a concept that combined architectural principles with technology and society, though it was never physically built. He has been knighted, too.

 35 

Alfred Waterhouse
3
Birthdate: July 19, 1830
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Liverpool, England
Died: August 22, 1905

Alfred Waterhouse was a British architect best remembered for his contribution to the Victorian Gothic Revival style of architecture. He is credited with designing iconic buildings like The Natural History Museum and Manchester Town Hall. Apart from earning the praises of the critics, Alfred Waterhouse was also one of the most financially successful Victorian architects of all time. 

 36 
Sir Basil Spence
(Architect)

Sir Basil Spence
3
Birthdate: August 13, 1907
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Mumbai, India
Died: November 19, 1976

 37 
Cedric Price
(Architect)

Cedric Price
3
Birthdate: September 11, 1934
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Stone
Died: August 10, 2003

Born to an architect father, Cedric Price followed in his father’s footsteps and studied architecture at Cambridge. A fine teacher, too, he established the architecture schools’ network Polyark. One of his best-known early concepts was the Fun Palace, while the Potteries Thinkbelt was another of his innovative concepts.

 38 
Denys Lasdun
(Architect)

Denys Lasdun
3
Birthdate: September 8, 1914
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: London, England
Died: January 11, 2001

Denys Lasdun was a British architect best remembered for designing London's Royal National Theatre, which is one of the finest examples of Brutalist architecture in the United Kingdom. He is also credited with designing many schools and universities. In 1977, Denys Lasdun was honored with the prestigious Royal Gold Medal by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).  

 39 
William Kent
(architect, painter, printmaker)

William Kent
3
Birthdate: 1685 AD
Birthplace: Bridlington
Died: April 12, 1748

William Kent was a British architect, painter, landscape architect, and furniture designer. After beginning his career as a court painter, Kent went on to establish himself as a prominent architect and introduced Palladian architecture to England. The gardens created by Kent at Chiswick House are one of the earliest models of the English garden. 

Richard Boyle, 3rd Earl of Burlington
2
Birthdate: April 25, 1694
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Yorkshire, England
Died: December 4, 1753

 41 
Owen Jones
(architect)

Owen Jones
2
Birthdate: February 15, 1809
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London
Died: April 19, 1874

 42 

Nicholas Grimshaw
2
Birthdate: October 9, 1939
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Hove

 43 
James Wyatt
(Architect)

James Wyatt
2
Birthdate: August 3, 1746
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Weeford, Staffordshire, England
Died: September 4, 1813

 44 
Peter Smithson
(Architect)

Peter Smithson
3
Birthdate: September 18, 1923
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Stockton-on-Tees, England
Died: March 3, 2003

Renowned British architect Peter Smithson practiced architecture as part of the duo Alison and Peter Smithson, the other half of which was his wife. They incorporated elements of New Brutalism in their works such as The Hunstanton School in Norfolk. They also penned books such as Urban Structuring.

 45 
James Gibbs
(Architect)

James Gibbs
2
Birthdate: December 23, 1682
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Aberdeen, Scotland
Died: August 5, 1754

James Gibbs, one of the most significant architects of his time, was trained in Rome and later merged the Italian and English styles of architecture. His best-known work includes the East Anglican St. Martin-in-the-Fields Church in London. While his works had elements of Baroque architecture, he was also influenced by Palladianism.

 46 
William Thornton
(Physician)

William Thornton
3
Birthdate: May 20, 1759
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Tortola, British Virgin Islands
Died: March 28, 1828

British-American William Thornton was initially trained in medicine and that is when he began drawing and sketching as part of his medical notes. He later won a contest for the design of the Library Company of Philadelphia's new hall. He also designed the Capitol in Washington, D.C.

 47 

Richard Norman Shaw
2
Birthdate: May 7, 1831
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: November 17, 1912

One of the greatest British architects of all time, Richard Norman Shaw contributed immensely to the English Domestic Revival movement and is best remembered for his country houses. The Bedford Park in London remains one of his best suburban planning projects. His works reflected Queen Anne Revival, Neo-Baroque, and Gothic Revival elements.

 48 
Tom Wright
(Architect)

Tom Wright
0
Birthdate: September 18, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Croydon, England

 49 
Laurie Baker
(Paramedic, Architect)

Laurie Baker
3
Birthdate: March 2, 1917
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Birmingham
Died: April 1, 2007

Laurie Baker was an England-born Indian architect best remembered for his initiatives in energy-efficient, cost-effective designs and architecture that maximized ventilation and space while maintaining an uncluttered and striking aesthetic sensibility. Nicknamed the Gandhi of architecture, Baker promoted the use of local materials and the revival of regional building practices. He was honored with many awards like the Padma Shri.

 50 
Philip Webb
(Architect)

Philip Webb
2
Birthdate: January 12, 1831
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Oxford, England
Died: April 17, 1915