John Proctor Bishop

John Bishop, who died in September 2021, was an architectural educator who sought to widen the opportunities for access to the profession and other built environment disciplines. He trained at the Manchester School of Art at the turn of the 1950s and 1960s, and following a period in practice taught at the University of Manchester School of Architecture in the subsequent decades. Latterly he had the role of admissions tutor where he was very proactive in looking beyond the traditional sources for architecture students. This pioneering work was pursued further with the establishment of the Children’s Gallery at CUBE in Manchester in the late 1990s where the creative responses of primary and secondary school students to their built environment were displayed alongside the work of leading contemporary architects. Through these activities countless young people were taught to explore the city and to imagine how it might be changed for the better. This is an enduring legacy with the MSA, a legacy not to be overshadowed by John’s semi-legendary encounter with Lionel Richie, The Commodores and a Royal Gold Medal festooned Louis Kahn on the car ramp of the Piccadilly Hotel.

John H.G. Archer

John Archer, who died in April 2022, was the pre-eminent expert on the architectural history of Manchester during the period of its industrial growth. Through his writing and his activism, the city’s architectural heritage grew in appreciation and became a key asset in its urban regeneration. After national service John studied at the Manchester School of Art and, having previously taught in Edinburgh, he was appointed to a lectureship at the University of Manchester School of Architecture. John published his innovative research on Edgar Wood, and supervised exhibitions on Thomas Harrison at the Whitworth Art Gallery, and on Wood and his partner Henry Sellars at the City Art Gallery. His editorship of the book ‘Art and Architecture in Victorian Manchester’ established the significance of the city’s aesthetic heritage. Recognition came in the form of victorious campaigns to defeat the widening of Portland Street, which would have led to further destruction of Victorian buildings, and a highly inappropriate attempt to build a cylindrical tower atop the gutted façade of the Free Trade Hall. John’s work as an academic and activist was celebrated in a volume of essays published in his honour for his eightieth birthday by the Lancashire and Cheshire Antiquarian Society and entitled entirely fittingly ‘Making Manchester’.

Peter Howcroft

Peter Howcroft, who died in January 2021 in Berlin, was a craftsman who had worked as a workshop assistant to Ken Peacock in the B.15 Model Making Worksop. Peter was the elder son of Tom Howcroft, an architect, landscape architect and for many years a lecturer in landscape architecture at the University of Manchester. As a teenager in the 1980s Peter’s interest in architecture and design and model making developed through his participation in project work with his father and his colleagues, and he went on to study architecture at the University of Sheffield School of Architecture. However Peter’s deepest interest was in craft, in particular working with wood, and he developed a career as a furniture maker of unique, bespoke pieces. His thoughtful and creative life was remembered and celebrated by family and friends in July 2021 in the beautiful setting of a landscape he loved at Dunham Massey.