Five Churchill Fellowships awarded to designers

Published: 5 Apr 2016

Five Churchill Fellowships awarded to designers

The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust has awarded five Travelling Fellowships to people working in the applied arts in interiors, product and graphic design and architecture.

The UK design industry is the largest in Europe, creating almost £9m an hour for the economy.

The Churchill Fellows will investigate innovative ideas in other countries, bringing the best of global practise back to the UK on their return.

This is the second year of a partnership with the British Council, during which time 13 Fellowships have been awarded – an investment of over £80,000 into British designers. Past projects have included research into housing design, textile models and workspace development.

This year’s award winners include:

• William McMorran, Director of Architectonicus in Bromyard, who will be travelling to Australia, Canada and the Netherlands to study the transformative integration of dementia care and the care environment.

Marc Cairns, from Pollokshields, who is Director of Participation at Pidgin Perfect in Glasgow. He will be travelling to Albania, Azerbaijan, Serbia and Turkey to investigate how young people can become involved in decision-making processes around the built environment.

Maria Gasparian, an architect from London, who will be travelling to the USA to explore the use of glazed architectural ceramics in public spaces.

Alexander Groves, a designer from London, who will be travelling to Brazil to research design projects which promote sustainable products from the Amazon Rainforest.

Tim Abrahams, a digital editor from Oxford, who will be travelling to the USA to explore how technology influences architecture.

Julia Weston, Chief Executive of the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust, said:

“Churchill Fellows travel globally and return with innovative ideas and a commitment to sharing their findings to help others in the UK. These Design Fellows will contribute to the booming UK design industry through identifying the best of international design and making it part of their own practice.”

João Guarantani, Acting Joint Director, Architecture Design Fashion at the British Council, said:

“We are thrilled to be working with the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust to provide opportunity for UK designers to travel and create links overseas. We firmly believe in the value of international dialogue, and hope future collaborations will result from these Design Fellowships.”

Notes to Editors:

The British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. They create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide. They work in more than 100 countries and their 8,000 staff – including 2,000 teachers – work with thousands of professionals and policy makers and millions of young people every year by teaching English, sharing the arts and delivering education and society programmes.

They are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter. A core publicly-funded grant provides 20 per cent of their turnover which last year was £864 million. The rest of their revenues are earned from services which customers around the world pay for, such as English classes and taking UK examinations, and also through education and development contracts and from partnerships with public and private organisations. All their work is in pursuit of their charitable purpose and supports prosperity and security for the UK and globally.

The British Council’s Architecture Design Fashion (ADF) department creates links between designers and cultural institutions around the world, through a diverse range of projects across the three disciplines. They form part of the British Council’s Arts Group, which works across 109 countries to build trust and opportunities for the UK through the exchange of knowledge, experience and ideas worldwide. For further information about Architecture, Design and Fashion at the British Council, please visit