Cyclist death: Arts and design visionary Moira Gemmill killed by HGV on way to work

Brother described Moira as 'absolutely extraordinary but in a very modest way'

Lamiat Sabin
Friday 10 April 2015 14:44
Moira Gemmill died after a collision with a lorry while cycling around a roundabout
Moira Gemmill died after a collision with a lorry while cycling around a roundabout

A leading designer who was picked to renovate Windsor Castle was killed by a lorry while cycling through London yesterday morning.

Moira Gemmill, 55, died after the collision near Lambeth Bridge, as reported by the Evening Standard. She is the fifth cyclist to be killed on the capital’s roads this year.

The former design director of the prestigious Victoria and Albert Museum, who was headhunted by the organisation in 2002 and is described as an “art visionary”, was cycling to work at St James’s Palace. The incident happened at around 9.30am.

She was pronounced dead at the scene after paramedics tried for 30 minutes to save her life. A report by TfL shows that planned improvements to the Lambeth Bridge northern roundabout had been shelved in 2012.

Ms Gemmill’s devastated brother Andrew told the Standard: “She was a wonderful, inspirational woman.

“She was absolutely extraordinary but in a very modest way. She lived a modest life.”

Tributes were posted on Twitter as the news broke.

Ms Gemmill is credited for boosting visitor numbers to the V&A from 900,000 to 2.9 million, according to the Architects Journal.

She also campaigned in making the industry a more level playing field for women architects and was a judge for the magazine’s Women in Architecture Awards.

“She believed in the importance of creating a more equal profession,” said Architectural Review editor and friend Christine Murray.

Ms Gemmill was appointed as Director, Capital Programmes at the Royal Collection Trust in January this year to modernise Windsor Castle and the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh.

She lived alone in Kennington, south London, and was originally from Kintyre in western Scotland. After studying at the Glasgow School of Art, she worked at the Aberdeen Art Gallery for 10 years before moving to the capital in the 1990s to work for the British Museum.

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