Nicholas Hare 1942-2024

Nicholas Hare 1942-2024

13 February 2024

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Nick Hare, the founding partner of our practice.

Nick started the practice from the attic room of his house in Highbury whilst still teaching the diploma years at the School of Architecture in Cambridge. He was an inspirational teacher with a passion for the practice of Architecture that attracted many students to the studio. He never lost the impulse to teach and had the gift of drawing out the very best of all who worked with him. Nick set out to create an inclusive culture in the practice, with teams working on each project from start to finish, resulting in architecture with a unique integrity and attention to detail. He was also insistent on properly professional service; award-winning architecture needed to be delivered on time and on budget too.

Nick’s first public success was the design for the Opera Bastille in Paris. NHA were the only British practice to be shortlisted. Whilst Mitterand chose another winner, the publicity put the practice on the map. The prize money also allowed the studio to grow and the practice to relocate. Although the architects missed tea around the Hare family’s kitchen table, more space, a business address and growing reputation meant more client commissions. Sophie, Nick’s wife, joined and became the heart of the admin team and the centre of the NHA extended family. That culture never changed.

Nick felt that good architects could and should tackle any project. Whilst experience of a particular building type was useful, he was keen that it did not lead to complacency. He favoured a curious and continually challenging approach to design, founded upon close client consultation that led to innovative and exciting architecture. As a result, the NHA portfolio spans many building types and sectors achieving prestigious awards in many categories.

Nick retired in 2018 after more than 40 fulfilling years of leading the practice. Still brimming with ideas and enthusiasm he set about a new career in large scale sculpting. At the time of his retirement, he said “I’ve very much enjoyed working in a partnership. The nice thing about our job is making buildings you hope people are pleased with, but it is also about working with all sorts of different people making different projects. What we will miss is the people.”

What we will miss is Nick.


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