AD Architects can trace its history back to the 1960s and the education building programme which resulted from the recommendations of the Plowden Report and the raising of the school leaving age. Then known as Fletcher Russell & Hooper and based in central London, the practice completed many innovative projects including Islington Green and Brookfield Schools in north London (where sixth form accommodation was built on top of existing buildings) and the Science Centre at Highbury Fields School (a collaboration between founding partner Ray Hooper and Mike Davies, later a partner of Richard Rogers) all of which are still in use today (see ‘Outdoor Classroom’ above).
The practice moved northwards out of London in the late 1960s, and survived the 1970s with a varied workload of public and private sector projects in schools, housing and industry. In the late 1970s, as Anglian Architects, we designed our first major healthcare project (Badagry General Hospital in Nigeria).
In the 1980s the practice received its first Civic Trust Award for a museum in Harlow. In the same decade present directors Alan Whittingham and Paul Wilkinson joined the firm, which then became known as Anglian Design (though some feel AD should stand for ‘Attention to Detail’) and we moved to our present base in Hertford in 1989.
In the 1990s we won our first RIBA Award for a research building for Philips Electronics, and steadily expanded our work in further and higher education and the healthcare sectors.
Jim Haigh joined the practice shortly before Ray Hooper’s retirement in 2002 and our incorporation as a limited company. He has helped expand our healthcare capability to the point where we now carry out as much healthcare design as education design.