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Robert Matthew

Biographical information

Full nameRobert Hogg•Matthew
Used nameRobert•Matthew
Born12 December 1906 in Edinburgh, City of Edinburgh, Scotland (GBR)
Died21 June 1975 in Humbie, East Lothian, Scotland (GBR)
NOC Great Britain


The son of a noted Edinburgh architect, Robert Matthew followed in his father’s footsteps and went on to become an internationally famous architect.

Matthew was educated at the Melville College, Edinburgh, and then the Edinburgh College of Art. In 1936 he worked in the Department of Health in Scotland, and by 1945 was the department’s chief architect and planning officer. Matthew left Scotland in 1946, when he was appointed architect for the London County Council, and one of the projects he was responsible for was the Royal Festival Hall on the South Bank. He returned North of the Border in 1953, when he became Professor of Architecture at Edinburgh University, a post he held for 15 years.

Matthew also had his own practice and was in much demand, particularly as a town planning consultant. He was president of the International Union of Architects between 1961-65 and was president of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) between 1962-64. He also served on the Royal Fine Art Commission for Scotland, and the Historic Buildings Council for Scotland and then, from 1970, was the advisor on building conservation to the Secretary of State for Scotland. Between 1963-67 Matthew was a member of the BBC’s general advisory panel, and in 1972 was appointed by the Government to advise on the standards Government building design.

Matthew received many national and international honours, including the CBE in 1952 and a knighthood ten years later. In 1970 he received the highest honour British architecture can bestow, the RIBA Royal Gold Medal.


Games Sport (Discipline) / Event NOC / Team Phase Unit Role As
1948 Summer Olympics Art Competitions GBR Robert Matthew
Architecture, Designs For Town Planning, Open (Olympic) Final Standings Judge
Architecture, Architectural Designs, Open (Olympic) Final Standings Judge