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Peter Beaven was born in Christchurch in 1925 and practised architecture, largely in that city, from 1949 until his death in 2012. He received numerous awards including the New Zealand Institute of Architects’ Gold Medal for lifetime achievement in 2003. He was a founder member in 1965 of the Christchurch Civic Trust, the first civic trust in New Zealand, and attended the Architectural Association’s urban design course in London in 1968. Canterbury Heritage’s posthumous 2012 Heritage Champion Award described him as ‘tirelessly battling against poor quality, unsympathetic development proposals, while demonstrating through his own work how architecture can build on and enhance the city’s heritage.’

Ian Lochhead taught Art History at the University of Canterbury from 1981 to 2014. He first met Peter Beaven when researching the architecture of Benjamin Mountfort in 1975. He curated the exhibition Peter Beaven – Architect: Buildings and Projects in 1995 and is the author of A Dream of Spires: Benjamin Mountfort and the Gothic Revival (Canterbury University Press, 1999).

Written by Peter Beaven shortly before his death in 2012, a 276 page fully illustrated book covering his architectural work and aims from 1951 to 2012.

Revised and reprinted 2018

Published by Peter Beaven Architecture Ltd, 24 Monro Street, Blenheim 7201