Oli Cunningham

Oli Cunningham BA (Hons), Dip (dist), ARB, RIBA

BSc (Hons) Architecture Course Leader


I am a qualified architect with extensive experience in both practice and education. I joined Sheffield Hallam University in 2016 and am the Course Leader for BSc Architecture. I also teach on the BSc Architectural Technology and MArch courses. In practice I have a wide range of experience on projects from product design, new build, listed buildings to large scale masterplanning in the residential, cultural, workplace and education sectors. The last project I completed before joining Hallam was awarded the RIBA 2017 Stirling Prize.


I have over 15 years teaching experience in Architecture at undergraduate and post graduate levels. I have taught at a number of schools of Architecture including the University of Portsmouth, as a Senior Lecturer, and as a Visiting Design Fellow at the University of Sheffield.

I have always combined teaching with practice, most recently as an Associate with dRMM Architects (de Rijke Marsh Morgan), and prior to this as an Associate with Design Engine Architects. Projects with dRMM include the redevelopment of Hastings Pier, winner of the 2017 Stirling Prize and Plot N26 of the 2012 Athletes Village, residential developments at Trafalgar Place (phase 1 of the Elephant and Castle masterplan, 2016 Stirling Prize Shortlist) and Phase 1 of the Battersea Power Station redevelopment. Projects with Design Engine included a sustainable low energy office building for Gifford Engineers.

Design, in the broadest sense, is the principle focus of my teaching and practice activities encompassing the practical, technological and theoretical across a wide range of scales.


Blueprint, The Battle of Hastings Pier, Vol. 346, May/June 2016

The Guardian, Hastings Pier opens following £14.2m restoration project 27 April 2016

Building Design Olympians village politics (Athletes Village 2012) no. 1998, 2012 Jan. 27, p. 1, 8-13.

Building, It’s here (Athletes Village 2012) vol. 277, no. 8709 (1), 2012 Jan. 6, p. 26-34.

Building, Off the blocks (Athletes Village 2012) vol. 277, no. 8711 (3), 2012 Jan. 20, p. 12-13.

RIBA Journal XXX Olympiad: to 2012 and beyond vol. 118, no. 9, 2011 Sept., p. 7, 24, 36-84.

Building Services The idea factory Buro Happold office refurbishment London vol. 27, no. 3, 2005 Mar., p.42-44.

Architects Journal Metal Works Gifford HQ studio vol. 222, no. 1, 2005 July 7, p. 43-58.

Architecture Today Gifford HQ studio no. 150, 2004 July, p. 20-29.

Building Services Good Wood (Gifford HQ studio) vol. 26, no. 4, 2004 Apr., p. 22-26.

Architects Journal Small Projects Egbert Road private house vol. 215, no. 2, 2002 Jan. 17, p.22-31.

Architects Journal Small Projects ‘Peagreen’ private house vol. 215, no. 2, 2002 Jan. 17, p. 22-31.

Building Design BD Class of 99 no. 1404, 1999 July 16, p. 14-26.

Other activities

Design Competitions and awards

With dRMM Architects

2017 Hastings Pier RIBA 2017 Stirling Prize Winner
2017 Hastings Pier redevelopment RIBA National Award Winner
2017 Hastings Pier RIBA SE Project Architect of the Year Winner
2017 Hastings Pier RIBA SE Award
2016 Hastings Pier redevelopment, shortlist BD Sports & Leisure architect of the year.
2016 Trafalgar Place, RIBA Stirling prize shortlist
2016 Trafalgar Place, Mayors Award for Planning Excellence
2016 Trafalgar Place, London RIBA Award
2014 - 2015 dRMM BD Housing Architect of the Year
2013 - 2014 dRMM BD Architect of the Year
2013 - 2014 dRMM BD Education Architect of the Year

With Design Engine Architects

2005 Public toilet facilities and car park Leighton Buzzard shortlisted Downland Award
2005 Gifford HQ Southampton shortlisted RIBA Award
2005 Gifford HQ Southampton Building Services Awards Best office project
2005 Gifford HQ Southampton ISE David Alsop Award
2005 ‘Light at the end of the tunnel’, London. RIBA competition (with Design Engine Architects) Commended
2004 RSPB Prototype bird box Durham RIBA competition (with Design Engine Architects) Runner-up
2003 Oxford University Rowing Club Invited competition (with Design Engine Architects) runner-up
2002 Egbert Road private house Winchester Commended Downland Award
2002 ‘Peagreen’ private house Winchester Commended Downland Award
2002 Hastings Maritime Stade RIBA competition (with Design Engine Architects) Shortlisted


1999 Featured student Class of 1999 (Building Design magazine)
1998 RIBA scholarship award for thesis research
1992 Barrington-Smith Award, outstanding portfolio

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