Royal Festival Hall architect dies at 91

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The Independent Online

The architect Sir Leslie Martin, best known for his innovative design of the Royal Festival Hall in London, has died at the age of 91. The former professor of architecture at Cambridge University died peacefully on 28 July near Cambridge, his family said.

The architect Sir Leslie Martin, best known for his innovative design of the Royal Festival Hall in London, has died at the age of 91. The former professor of architecture at Cambridge University died peacefully on 28 July near Cambridge, his family said.

A graduate of the University of Manchester School of Architecture, he began his career as an assistant lecturer there in 1930. He became head of architecture at Hull University and in 1939 was appointed principal assistant architect to the London, Midland and Scottish Railway.

Nine years later London County Council appointed Martin deputy architect after announcing plans to build the concert hall on the south bank of the Thames. He succeeded Sir Robert Matthew as architect to the LCC in 1953 and moved to Cambridge University three years later when he was offered the post of professor and head of architecture. A spokesman for the department said: "He was someone who made an authoritative contribution to the avant-garde, to architectural practice, to public service, to education and to research."

Martin married Sadie Speight, a fellow student at Manchester, who died in 1992. He is survived by their son and daughter and six grandchildren.

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