Design advocate Nairita Chakraborty is already a member of Historic England’s advisory committee
By: Pramod Thomas
An architect and advocate for British Indian design has been appointed commissioner of the public body that oversees the UK’s environment and heritage.
Nairita Chakraborty has been appointed Commissioner of Historic England and will begin her new role on July 1 for a four-year term through June 2026. She is already a member of the Historic England Advisory Committee.
Chakraborty grew up in Delhi and studied at the School of Planning and Architecture before moving to the UK. She has over 16 years of experience in heritage, cityscape and design.
The Secretary of State for @DCMS appointed five new Commissioners of Historic England.
— Historic England (@HistoricEngland) June 16, 2022
“I am really looking forward to working with my colleagues who have inspired and guided me throughout my career,” said Chakraborty.
“We are living in times of extreme challenges as well as opportunities and I hope to promote the role of heritage as an important resource, which also enhances our cultural identity and contributes to a carbon neutral society.”
She has experience in ensuring the sustainable use of historic buildings while carrying out large-scale regeneration, housing and infrastructure projects.
She has produced significant work in adapting and converting large and complex listed buildings, as well as schemes of downtown, public domain and conservation areas.
Some of his iconic London projects include Alexandra Palace, Tottenham High Road, Holborn Town Hall, as well as work at the Historic Middlesbrough Shipyards.
As a practitioner, his focus has been on retrofitting and restoring historic buildings, bringing them back into use within broader regeneration plans.
“My experience in the public and private sector has given me unique insight into planning and conservation practices from both sides of the table, giving me the ability to critically but constructively analyze both sides of the arguments and offer the best plausible solutions,” said Chakraborty.
“I look forward to using this experience to support Historic England’s role in the continued evolution of its approach to and defense of the historic environment.”
While his scientist father, writer mother and younger brother all live in Delhi, Chakraborty also has an extended family in Kolkata and this “deep connection to the city of joy” and his colonial heritage was also his inspiration.
“Traveling was always an important part of my childhood, which allowed me to see and experience India’s heritage from a very young age, which motivates me to pursue a career in this field,” she said.
She recently set up her own office, Revive and Tailor, which focuses on integrating existing buildings into regeneration proposals in innovative and ingenious ways.
She is also involved with the Havering and Kensington and Chelsea Design Review Panels in the UK capital and is a full member of the Royal Town Planners Institute and the Institute of Historic Building Conservation.
Historic England is a non-departmental executive public body sponsored by the UK Government’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the commission is its governing body that provides expert advice and guidance.
Chakraborty’s appointment was confirmed by the DCMS ministry alongside four others.