OBEs for Dids Macdonald and Margaret Manning


Anti Copying in Design co-founder Dids Macdonald has been recognised for services to the design industry. Reading Room chief executive Margaret Manning also receives an OBE, for services to British exports.



Anti Copying in Design chief executive Dids Macdonald has been made an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for her services to the design industry.

Macdonald co-founded ACID in 1996 as a voluntary action group tackling design copying. She had previously been a partner in a company that designed and produced decorative accessories, where she had come up against other businesses copying her designs.

ACID now supports and advises designers on IP issues and operates the ACID Design Databank, which aids design protection.

The organisation also led a 15 year campaign to legally protest registered designs, which resulted in the Intellectual Property Act becoming law last year.

Macdonald says: “I am immensely proud of this recognition and honoured to be awarded an OBE.

“This highlights the importance of intellectual property which underpins all successful design brands, of which there are so many within the furnishing industry. I am determined to continue to raise awareness about ACID’s ongoing campaign ‘Commission it, Don’t Copy it’.”

Barry Sheerman MP, co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Design and Innovation Group says: “I’m delighted that Dids has been recognised in the Birthday Honours list for her services to the design industry.


“She has worked for many years not only to ensure designers and their work are protected, but also to make the case for the creativity, diversity and strength of the UK design industry as a whole.”

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Margaret Manning, group chief executive of consultancy Reading Room, has also received an OBE – in the Diplomatic and overseas list.

Manning has been awarded the honour for services to British exports to Singapore and wider Asia Pacific region.

Reading Room says that over the past for years the consultancy’s Singapore team has grown to just under 100 people with an average annual growth rate of more than 100 per cent.

Manning says: “I am immensely proud to receive this honour. I will endeavor to use the recognition that this brings to assist other UK SMEs to export and grow within ASEAN.

“As an independent business Reading Room would not have been able to succeed without the assistance of the UKTI and the FCO. I urge the new UK Government to support these organisations with their excellent work in helping put the Great into British export businesses.”

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