David Mellor dies aged 78

Sheffield-born industrial desiger David Mellor, renowned for his cutlery designs, has died at the age of 78.

Mellor trained as a silversmith, and after graduating from the Royal College of Art created cutlery ranges including the silver-plated Pride (1953) and Embassy (1963), designed for use in British embassies. Both ranges won Design Centre Awards.

He opened his first shop in Sloane Square, London, in 1969, selling a range of kitchenware and tableware, and in 1990 completed a purpose-designed factory, in collaboration with architect Sir Michael Hopkins & Partners, at Hathersedge in the Peak District National Park. The building won a number of awards, including the Royal Institute of British Architects National Award.

As well as designing cutlery, Mellor also redesigned the national traffic light system in 1965-70 and created a square postbox design in 1966.

He was elected a Royal Designer for Industry in 1962, was a former chairman of the Crafts Council and trustee of the Victoria & Albert Museum, and was appointed CBE in 2001.

In 1984 he said, ‘For me, in all aspects of my activity – from the architecture of our buildings, the selection of products for my shops, down to the choice of the right rivets for my cutlery – to aim for the highest visual standards has been paramount, and perfecting this skill has been one of the main aims of my life as a designer.’

Mellor, who died yesterday, is survived by his wife Fiona, daughter Clare, and son Corin, who is now creative director of David Mellor Design.

Latest articles

What to look out for at Design Indaba 2019

Ann Crabtree, Alice Rawsthorn, David Droga and John Pawson are among the international speakers at this year’s Design Indaba festival, which takes place next month in South Africa.