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Luke Hughes & the Gordon Russell Trust revive the Coventry chair
Finger joint detail on the new Coventry chair.


LONDON.- Luke Hughes® and the Gordon Russell Trust have confirmed the details of an exclusive world-wide licensing arrangement with the Broadway-based Gordon Russell Design Museum which will benefit from future royalties. The agreement was recently signed by Luke Hughes, CEO of Luke Hughes® and Ray Leigh, trustee and founder of the museum, former Chairman of Gordon Russell Limited and before that, architectural partner of Dick Russell.

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’.

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 begun; rigorous testing has been completely successful.

‘The chair fits perfectly with the company’s central design philosophy that furniture should enhance 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’ - Nigel Shepherd, COO at Luke Hughes®

‘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 marvellous to know this classic design will have new life’ - Trevor Chinn, Trustee at the Gordon Russell Trust

Founded in 1981 in London’s Covent Garden Luke Hughes® is a specialist consultancy in furniture design . The studio team has worked with over 20 major cathedrals, more than 100 parish churches and numerous universities, institutions and architects of note. The company has become known for its focus on Furniture in Architecture™

Coventry Cathedral was bombed on 14 November 1940. Basil Spence won the design competition to replace the cathedral in 1950. The new building, considered a symbol of reconciliation in post-war Britain, was consecrated on 25 May 1962. Many artistic works were commissioned: a tapestry by Graham Sutherland, stained glass by John Piper, Keith New and Geoffrey Clarke, lettering by Ralph Beyer, sculpture by Jacob Epstein and John Bridgeman and Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem . The design of the chairs was specially commissioned from Dick Russell.





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