Richard Murphy (architect)

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For other people named Richard Murphy, see Richard Murphy (disambiguation).

Richard Murphy OBE (born 24 April 1955) is an architect and businessman. He is the founder and principal architect of Richard Murphy Architects, an architectural firm operating in Edinburgh. He is winner of the 2016 RIBA House of the year.[1][2]


Murphy was educated at Newcastle and Edinburgh Universities, and has taught at the latter.[3] In 1991 he formed Edinburgh architectural firm, Richard Murphy Architects, and it has since grown to over twenty architects. In the early years his firm focused on designing extensions to houses and mews conversions however have subsequently diversified onto education, healthcare, the arts and commercial work. They have worked on several UK National Lottery-funded buildings.

In 1995 Murphy designed the first of the UK's Maggie's Centres, in Edinburgh, which now acts as the administrative headquarters for Maggie's. Designed to aid cancer treatment, the building was designed without any corridors, to avoid an institutional feel.[4]

While teaching at Edinburgh University, he researched the work of the Venetian architect Carlo Scarpa, and later published a book on Scarpa, and later yet presented a Channel 4 documentary on him.[3] He also co-wrote "An Architect's Appreciation of Charles Rennie Mackintosh". In 2004 Murphy exhibited at the Venice Biennale. In 2012, Richard Murphy Architects published a book titled "Of Its Time and of Its Place: The Work of Richard Murphy Architects."

Murphy is a Member of the RIBA, a Fellow of the RIAS, an Academician of the Royal Scottish Academy, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and an Honorary Fellow of Napier University. Richard Murphy Architects has also won a total of 20 RIBA Awards.

He was appointed an OBE in the New Year's Honours January 2007 for services to architecture, the only practising architect on the list.[5]

Murphy has held lectures in places such as Scotland, at Edinburgh University, the Student-led 5710 lecture society of The Scott Sutherland School of Architecture and The Built Environment, Aberdeen and Strathclyde University in Glasgow. In 2006 he completed a lecture tour in South Africa, and on 13 March 2012 he gave a conference titled "Architecture of its time and its place" to students at Barcelona Institute of Architecture.[6][self-published source?] Most recently Murphy lectured at the Association of Icelandic Architects in 2015.

He previously completed a modern mews-style house at Calton Hill near Edinburgh Castle, for his own use, and says he lives "pretty simply".[7] More recently Richard Murphy completed his own house on Hart Street in 2015 [8] which won the Saltire Society Award for Best Single Dwelling New Build [9]

Proposed work[edit]

  • Haymarket Redevelopment, Edinburgh [10]
  • Candleriggs Quarter in Glasgow's Merchant City [11]
  • Dunfermline Museum & Art Gallery, Fife [12]
  • Perth Theatre, Fife [13]

Notable completed work[edit]

Projects by year of design


  1. ^ "Murphy House wins RIBA House of the Year 2016". 
  2. ^ Wainwright, Oliver (16 December 2016). "House of the Year: a cave of wonders worthy of Wallace and Gromit". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 December 2016. 
  3. ^ a b Art Daily 31 July 2013 Press Release: Royal Scottish Academy of Art & Architecture celebrates 21 years of Richard Murphy Architects
  4. ^ a b "Maggie's Edinburgh". Healthcare Design. 31 August 2005. Retrieved 24 June 2015. 
  5. ^ "Richard Murphy receives OBE in New Year's list". Building Design. 5 January 2007. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "My Home: Richard Murphy, architect". The Independent. London. 5 July 2006. Retrieved 2015-04-19. 
  8. ^ Richard Murphy completes Hart Street "Murphy House" Urban Realm
  9. ^ Saltire Society 2015 Award Winners "2015 Awards Announced" The Saltire Society
  10. ^ "Work starts on £200m Haymarket Redevelopment" [Edinburgh Architecture]
  11. ^ "Candleriggs Quarter submitted for Planning"[Project Scotland]
  12. ^ "Work begins on Dunfermline's Museum and Art Gallery " [Scottish Construction Now]
  13. ^ "Richard Murphy reworks Perth Theatre overhall plans" [Architects Journal]
  14. ^ Computer Centre, Merchiston Campus, Napier University, Edinburgh,
  15. ^ Housing Moore Street, Glasgow,
  16. ^ University of East London - Computer and Conference Centre,
  17. ^ Stratheden 18 Bed Dementia and Mental Health Unit,
  18. ^ Justice Mill Lane Park Inn Hotel and Office Development, Aberdeen,
  19. ^ Queen's University Belfast Postgraduate Accommodation,
  20. ^ "Old See House Mental Health Facility", [e-architect
  21. ^ Postgraduate Housing for The University of Edinburgh, Holyrood Road, Edinburgh,

External links[edit]