We have heard with sadness that Ray Moss died last month after a period of failing health.
Ray was the founder, an executive member, former chair and honorary president of Architects for Health.
Ray was a kind, convivial and thoughtful man who led an extraordinary life. He was influential in developing modern hospital architecture in the emerging NHS. He was particularly involved in the development during the 1960’s of Greenwich Hospital in South London which brought together a talented team of planners and designers. Work with clinical teams on this project stimulated his interest in research. He championed design research and was fortunate to be operating in an era when the Department of Health Buildings Branch as it was known then was under the stewardship of his like-minded friend, architect Howard Goodman.
In 1962 ‘A Hospital Plan for England and Wales’ was published. At that time Ray was the Regional Architect for one of the Thames regions but then moved to the recently established research division at the Department of Health. The team, led by Ray Moss, was developed and supported by commissions from the Buildings Branch and later NHS Estates. He said in 1999. “Looking back it was an amazing time. Each year we would have a programme of schemes being processed, some at the building stage, some at the planning stage, and some at the research and briefing stage”.
Ray founded the Medical Architecture Research Unit (MARU) in the late 1960’s. MARU was first based at Southend Technical College, later at the Polytechnic of North London and now at London South Bank University. The first year of the course was the 72 -73 Session. Ray set up a working group to develop the course and published the “First phase of an investigation into the education and training needs of health facility planners (1973)”.
In 1993 Ray Moss and John Wells-Thorpe founded Architects for Health (AfH). The first AGM was held at MARU in Dec 1994 and a busy events calendar was quickly established. As chairman Ray was active in promoting a range of topics which would be familiar and current today. A few years later, as a proud and distinguished member of the Reform Club, he instituted a series of wide ranging debates hosted in the historic rooms of his club. He stepped down as chair in 1998. On leaving office, the executive committee made Ray Honorary President of AfH. He was regular and active participant at AfH events until recent years where ill health made attendance difficult.