W. H. Ansell (1873–1959) was President of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), 1940–1943. One of the last Presidents trained before the twentieth century, he had a keen interest in education and was a founder member of the National Buildings Record in 1940. This was set up to record buildings threatened by aerial bombardment and survives today as part of English Heritage. Not an inspired architect, Ansell designed sound and elegant buildings that have a quiet dignity. Hospitals and convalescent homes were a major feature of his practice. But he is remembered for steering the RIBA through difficult wartime years and was unanimously asked to stay on as President for an unprecedented extra year.
Where to see this painting?
The Royal Institute of British Architects
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