60 Seconds with our Design Director

I am the Design Director at Mount Anvil and I oversee the design of our developments.

Who are you and what do you do?

I am  the Design Director at Mount Anvil and I oversee the design of our developments – both inside and out – from concept through to delivery. You can distil what I do into three primary job functions: driving product quality to ensure that our developments leave a positive legacy in their communities, ensuring our Design & Technical Team members are set up to succeed and being an ambassador for the business.

I joined the company eight years ago. Back in 2006 Mount Anvil was a very different business but, one thing has remained constant: our appetite for excellence and quality, continuous learning and improvement.

What makes great design?

Getting the simple things right is key. For instance: choosing the right materials, focusing on material junction details, creating flowing layouts etc. We spend a huge amount of time on those details.

And then there’s the special ingredient - the “bit of magic” that turns good design into great design.

Why is great design so important?

We want people to be proud of the homes that we create. Great design makes people say ‘wow, I’m  proud to live here or I’m  proud that this development is part of my community’.

What objects inspire you when designing Mount Anvil developments?

Every one of our developments is unique, so our design approach is bespoke, tailored to suit the location and target market. At the outset of the design process we consider the vision and feel for the scheme, translating it into architectural styles and materials. Often the history of a site will inspire the design.

Who or what are your personal design icons?

From an early  age I have always loved the symmetry and grace of Palladian architecture. During a trip to Paris in my first year at University I was inspired by and spent many hours sketching the glass pyramids at the Louvre, designed by I M Pei. At the time this was a revelation, marrying classical design with the modern.

What part of the design process do you enjoy the most?

I love the entire process actually and the creativity it inspires. It’s seeing the idea come to life into a great product, which really fills me with excitement.

Which is your favourite Mount Anvil development and why?

Tough one. They are all unique. One that springs to mind is Lexicon (EC1). At 36 stories this is my first tower experience - a huge learning curve. This project is a fabulous example of the great team work that embodies the Mount Anvil culture; working together to overcome the many design and technical challenges to deliver a fabulous product.

Finally, we’re just over halfway through 2014. What are you most looking forward to for the rest of the year?

I’m actually moving into our development in Wandsworth – The Filaments (SW18) – so I’m really looking forward to that. Particularly the views over London and King George’s Park.

And I can’t wait for the next scheme I’m going to be involved with. We’re actually planning to build 2,500 new London homes by 2018, so there’s a lot more great design to come!