30 St Mary Axe, also known as the Gherkin
Francis worked as an architectural consultant on the construction of many of London's most spectacular new buildings.
Francis Golding: a London life
Born in Macclesfield in 1944, Francis received his degree from Cambridge in 1966, moved to London the following year, and became a Civil Servant for the Ministry of Public Buildings (later known as the Department of the Environment (DOE)), in 1970. From 1975-77 he worked on the Royal Commission on the Press and in 1976 became Assistant Secretary at the DOE; he was particularly proud of his role in the creation of the 1977 Rent Act. Francis was instrumental in the development of English Heritage (now Historic England and English Heritage Trust), joining the group in 1984 and then from 1986-90 was their Head of Properties. From 1992-94 Francis was the Secretary of the International Committee on Monuments and Sites and became Secretary of the Royal Fine Arts Commission in 1995 and later, in 1999, became First Secretary of the Commission for Architecture and the Build Environment.
From 2000, to his death in 2013, Francis Golding was an independent consultant for several high-profile architectural projects in London, including Norman Foster’s ‘Gherkin’, Jean Nouvel‘s ‘One New Change’, Rogers Stirk's ‘Chelsea Barracks’ and ‘Neo Bankside’, Rafael Vinoly’s ‘Walkie Talkie’ and the British Museum World Conservation Centre. Due to Francis’s involvement in the development of the Walkie Talkie (20 Fenchurch Street), the ‘Sky Garden’ located on the top floor of the building is named The Francis Golding Terrace in his honour.