Sat 23 Jun 2018, 11.30am–12.30pm
London Society Saturday Schools:
Benedict O'Looney - The brilliant modernity and artistic achievement of London’s Edwardian Architecture


The Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design
London E1 7TB

LS - Edwardian - B O'Looney

MA Architecture and Urbanism and Cass Cities present

An understanding and appreciation of the London’s Edwardian building boom is essential for navigating London’s architectural scene today. In the Edwardian period the City’s and most of London’s West End was rebuilt. The new architecture that replaced the faded Georgian capital was supremely confident, beautifully detailed using high-quality materials, and adopted all the latest technological advances available to the 20th century architect and engineer.

Benedict O'Looney (Benedict O'Looney Architects) will examine both the stylistic and technological sources of London’s Edwardian scene; how the brilliant architect Norman Shaw found a way out of the ‘battle of the styles’ that characterised high Victorian Architecture and how Shaw and his pupils and followers set the high artistic standards and paths that British architecture was to follow into the twentieth century.

Benedict will look at the two principal design currents of Fin de Siècle London: the changeful Arts and Crafts ‘Edwardian Free Style’ and the Classical revival brilliantly led by Edwin Lutyens. He will also look at how progressive architects and engineers battled with London’s antiquated building control laws to introduce fully steel-framed buildings, and show that behind the immaculately detailed Portland Stone, glazed brick and terracotta facades, the modern structures and services we take for granted in building today were first found.

Cass Cities logo and London Society logo
You can book these events individually, or save money by booking every event in the Architecture Saturday School: BLOCK BOOKING
Cass staff and students get a discounted booking rate, email for your discount code.

About London Society Saturday Schools

Cass Cities and the Architecture and Urbanism MA are delighted to partner with the London Society in bringing to you two 'Saturday Schools' on Architecture and Planning. Two series of five Saturday morning sessions in June and September, in which eminent and lively speakers cover topics relevant to the past, present and future of London at a variety of scales, from building to city.

Cass staff, students, graduates and offer holders get a discounted rate on these events, which can be booked individually or as a block. Email to get your discount code.


The London Society is a forum for debate on the future of London. They arrange events and visits to a variety of places, buildings and institutions, some not generally open to the public, organise debates and lectures, including the annual Sir Banister Fletcher Lecture, addressed by distinguished speakers. The Society also sponsors the All Party Parliamentary Group on London Planning and Built Environment.

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June 2018: The Architecture of London; a century from Empire to Brexit

The 2018 London Society Architecture School will explore the architecture of London from the halcyon years before the First World War when London was the largest city in the world, the centre of an enormous empire, through the period of long reinvention, to the present day. Changes in social aspirations have left a portfolio of buildings that mirror this 100 year period of architectural evolution. Technology, cultural and political developments have left their marks on the palimpsest of buildings that the unprecedented changing forces and opportunities that the wrench from a 'search for a new style' in architecture. How and why is architecture so changeable? What drives a design and how can cultural references be picked up, used, discarded and then picked up again? How do clients and building methods drive design? How does this ever-changing rainbow of taste evolve and leave its mark in a building?

September 2018: Planning London (details tbc)

Other events in this series