Derek Wilson, New Zealand architect and environmentalist, Died at 93


Derek John Wilson was born in 1922, and died on June 10, 2016.

He was a New Zealand architect.

Wilson was active in Wellington.

He was also known as an environmentalist and published several works.

Derek Wilson grew up on a coastal sheep station owned by the Riddiford family at Tora, Wairarapa, where his father Clement Henry Wilson was the manager.

Derek’s mother was Ida Agnes Wilson (née Clarkson).

Derek Wilson was the oldest of three children: his sister Joan and his brother Godfrey, who became and Anglican Bishop.

Wilson attended Rathkeale College and Wanganui Collegiate schools.

In World War Two, Wilson trained as a pilot in Florida for the Fleet Air Arm.

Following his graduation, Wilson left New Zealand and worked in London for Ramsey, Murray, White and Ward (the firm of two New Zealand ex-pats Keith Murray and Basil Ward), as well as for Sir Hugh Casson and the London County Council.

After to New Zealand, he settled in Masterton and then moved to Wellington to join forces with William Toomath to set up Toomath and Wilson.

And Toomath and Wilson later joined by Don Irvine and Grahame Anderson in 1972, forming the firm Toomath Wilson Irvine Anderson Ltd.

He was awarded an NZIA Bronze medal for a design for the Calvert House, in Stokes Valley

His other work of note includes the Maunsell beach-house at Riversdale Beach, the Wilson house in Khandallah, St Matthew’s Church in Brooklyn, Wellington, and his Marine Research Facilities at Wellington’s Greta Point (now NIWA) (1980).

Most of which are well known as important works in Wellington’s architectural history.

Dereck was a member of the Wellington Architectural Centre, including as President (1963) and Committee Member (1961–62, 1964).

His most recent book, “Four Architects”, celebrates Wellington architecture and includes several of Wilson’s designs.

Diana June Townsend was his wife, they had three sons and six grandchildren.

Derek Wilson passed away at 83 yrs old.