Brixton Recreation Centre architect George Finch dies

George Finch. Picture from
George Finch. Picture from

The Lambeth architect behind the  Brixton Rec, George Finch, has died aged 83.

Finch designed the iconic Recreation Centre, as well as Lambeth Towers, Kennington Road. His death was reported by the Architects Journal yesterday.

The acclaimed architect worked for London County Council (LCC) across the capital before joining the Lambeth architectural team, aged 33.

Brixton Rec had been earmarked for possible demolition and redevelopment as flats in a recent draft of the Future Brixton plan, but a fierce opposition from users and the community led to councillors guaranteeing it’s future.

Writing on Facebook, one member of the Brixton Recreation Users Group (BRUG) said yesterday: “I have just heard the very sad news, that George Finch the architect of the Rec died of a heart attack on Wednesday 13th Feb.

“His son Sean Macintosh said George was so pleased that BRUG had saved the Rec for future generations to enjoy.”

Alan Piper, secretary of Brixton Society, was a junior at Lambeth council’s new architectural department in 1965, when George Finch was a group leader there.

Piper told the Blog: “The Brixton Rec was pioneering in the respect that it wasn’t just an extension to a town centre shopping mall, it was about making the town centre about more than just shopping, but leisure and recreation as well.”

The architecture website Utopia London tweeted to say: “Very sad news: George Finch, architect and star of #utopialondon has died. Our thoughts are with his partner of 48 years Kate Macintosh.”



George Finch – Brixton Rec from utopialondon on Vimeo.

In a video on, Finch said: “I realised that natural light was important.

“The main concept of Brixton Recreation Centre was the central atrium.. and off that on each level were different activities.”

In the video he added that his son and his wife still visit the Rec to go swimming.

Did you know George, or perhaps you worked with him at Lambeth? Email


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