Luke Hughes and Company, recent news

Reviving the Coventry chair

June 2015

Luke Hughes® and the Gordon Russell Trust revive the Coventry chair
The ‘Coventry’ chair, designed in 1960 by Dick Russell for Basil Spence’s new Coventry Cathedral, is going back into production.

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The revived Coventry chair

Luke Hughes® and the Gordon Russell Trust have confirmed the details of an exclusive world-wide licensing arrangement which will benefit the Broadway-based Gordon Russell Museum from future royalties. The agreement was recently signed by Luke Hughes, CEO of Luke Hughes® and Ray Leigh, former Chairman of Gordon Russell Ltd (and, before that, architectural partner of Dick Russell) who is one of the trustees and founders of the museum.

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Trevor Chinn, Trustee at the Gordon Russell Trust gives his reaction

Luke Hughes, who has been designing furniture for cathedrals and churches across the UK and USA for the last 25 years said ‘it’s an iconic 1960s design, beautiful in itself, practical, hard-wearing and passing that key test, really important for churches, of minimizing visual impact on the interior; so many beautiful church interiors are ruined by inappropriate furniture’.

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Ray Leigh and Luke Hughes sign the global licensing deal

Another museum trustee, Trevor Chinn, now in his nineties, who was formerly in charge of production at the Gordon Russell factory which made thousands of the chairs for cathedrals and churches around the world, said recently ‘ ‘the design epitomises all the best traditions of the Arts and Crafts Movement with the practicalities of the machine age. Gordon used to say that we needed to teach the machine some manners – well, his brother Dick certainly did with this chair. It’s marvelous to know this classic design will have new life’.

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The original and revived versions of the Coventry chair

The manufacturing processes have been upgraded to take into account modern production techniques that were simply not available fifty years ago. Trial production runs have already been begun; rigorous testing has been completely successful.

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A meeting of the original and revived Coventry chairs

Nigel Shepherd, COO, observed recently ‘The chair fits perfectly with the company’s general design philosophy that furniture should embellish architectural space, not embarrass it. We are already receiving significant enquiries, especially from the United States, and hope to be able to have more news about these in the coming weeks’

For more information, please contact our team on or call our studio on 0207 404 5995

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Finger joint detail of the new Coventry chair

Luke Hughes x Museums at Night

May 2015

This month Luke Hughes gave two talks at the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom as part of Museums at Night, a bi-annual event opening doors to some of the UK’s most important cultural buildings after dark.

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Set within the subtly finished, bright surrounds of Court Room 2, the first of the talks introduced the refurbishment of the Grade II listed home of the Supreme Court and how the Luke Hughes® team became involved.

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Later Luke held an open talk set in the elegant confines of the Law Library, discussing the finer details of the design and materials used and how the process stayed true to the historical setting.

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Read more about the project here.

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First five photos courtesy of Kevin Leighton/Supreme Court of the United Kingdom.

Join us for Museums at Night

April 2015

On May 14th, join Luke Hughes for a very special evening at the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom.

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As part of an exciting evening exploring this stunning setting, Luke will discuss some of the challenges in the transformation of the Grade II* listed Middlesex Guildhall into the new home of the Supreme Court. The renovated building, re-opened by HM the Queen in 2009, now houses three courts, circulation and exhibition areas and an exquisite law library, all with furnishings specially designed to respond to both the building’s architectural legacy and the practical issues of running the country’s principal appellate court in the 21st century.

In what promises to be a detailed and revealing insight Luke Hughes will present the case for the continued relevance and legacy of this national landmark.

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‘Museums at Night is the UK’s twice-yearly after-hours festival which aims to encourage new visitors to discover the fantastic culture and heritage on offer on their doorsteps. There are over 500 events taking place in museums, galleries and heritage sites, and one of the most interesting is the chance to explore the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom. In addition to enjoying a courtroom drama and live music, visitors can learn what it’s like to work in the Supreme Court, while the architecture of this fascinating place will be brought to life by furniture designer Luke Hughes, who’ll share the inside story on transforming and furnishing the grade II* listed Middlesex Guildhall into the Supreme Court’s new home. All in all, it should be a uniquely interesting experience!
Rosie Clarke, Campaigns Officer, Culture24

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For more information and to join us for the evening, visit the Supreme Court’s event page here.

Luke Hughes for the Royal Savoy

March 2015

High on the hills above the Swiss city of Lausanne lies the Hotel Royal Savoy, the location of Luke Hughes®’ latest project. As part of a multi-million euro redevelopment of the 1906 hotel, built in the style of a grand chateau, original architectural features will be restored and its leading spa facilities will be upgraded. In addition, a 5,000m2 park exclusive to guests will be incorporated within the hotel grounds.

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Luke Hughes® has been commissioned to design and install 17 spa beds for the extensive new wing that will include treatment rooms and indoor and outdoor pools leading to terraced gardens.

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For the last few weeks our custom designs have been crafted in English workshops in preparation for the Hotel’s expected reopening this summer. The waterbed mattresses, with integrated temperature controls, feature stained American white oak surrounds and adjustable goose-neck reading lights. Together the clean lines of this modern ‘sanctuary for the senses’ and the architecturally considered designs by Luke Hughes®’ create a space to relax and inspire.

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For updates on the project, make sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

Luke Hughes on BBC Radio

March 2015

As part of the highly anticipated reinterment of King Richard III, Luke Hughes made an appearance on BBC Radio Leicester’s afternoon show with Ben Jackson to discuss our furniture for Leicester Cathedral.

Speaking about his own history in furniture design and the background of design and history that influenced our work for the cathedral, Luke took the chance to thank the teams involved and encourage people to support their local heritage sites.

Listen to the show on demand here.

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