Kevin McCloud is the host of the international critically acclaimed, long-running Channel 4 series Grand Designs (1999-). With its ever-growing success, the show now has an accompanying magazine – which Kevin contributes to – and hosts annual live exhibitions. The show is so successful, it won a BAFTA in 2015 for Best Feature.
His other TV credits include the likes of Man Made Home (2012) for Channel 4, Kevin McCloud’s Grand Tour (2009) which saw him touring European cities and sites of classic antiquity, and describing their impact on British architecture, as well as Kevin McCloud: Slumming It (2010) where he spent two weeks in Mumbai for Channel 4’s ‘India season’.
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Kevin McCloud admits to being obsessed with buildings since he was a child, going on to study the history of them at Cambridge University. After graduating, he trained as a theatre designer, working on a variety of productions including for rock group Harvey and the Wallbangers, before setting up his own lighting design practice. Here he worked on projects for Harrods, and installed lighting at Ely Cathedral, Edinburgh Castle, The Dorchester Hotel and Savoy Hotel.
Now instantly recognisable for his television appearances, Kevin has hosted or featured in a wide range of programmes – unsurprisingly, most of them are architecture based.
Kevin’s Supersize Salvage (2014) saw him challenge a team of interior designers and architects to strip down an abandoned aircraft and remake it into several new, saleable products, helping the country deal with its wastage management in the meantime. The following year, he hosted Kevin McCloud’s Escape to the Wild for Channel 4 where he travelled to meet people around the world who have abandoned modern civilisation and begun a live in the most remote places on the planet.
His other forays into television presenting include the BBC’s Don’t Look Down (2000) and Channel 4’s Demolition (2005) and Kevin McCloud’s Man Made Home in 2012. He went on to collaborate with Channel 4 in 2008 to screen Kevin McCloud and the Big Town Plan, a series that covered problems of urban regeneration.
In 2019, he wrote and presented Grand Designs: The Street, which followed ten households as they embarked on an epic five-year project to construct their own homes as part of Britain’s biggest self-build project in Bicester. He has also fronted the spin off Grand Designs: House of the Year, a series where he visits new homes across the UK, all in running for the RIBA House of the Year award. In 2020 he worked on Kevin McCloud’s Rough Guide to the Future, in which he explores what the future of the planet may look like, and he was the narrator for Celebrity Snoop Dogs.
Most importantly, Kevin is an advocate for sustainable development and architecture and ecological construction. He believes that, no matter the building design, whether it is traditional or modern, it has to be built in the context of the landscape, its place and the neighbouring buildings.
Away from television, Kevin has published over 15 books covering construction, architecture, colour and lighting, including Kevin McCloud’s Decorating Book (1990), Kevin McCloud’s Techniques of Decorating (1995), Home Front Bathrooms: Practical Ideas with Designer Style (1998), Choosing Colours: An Expert Choice of the Best Colours to Use in Your Home (2003), Grand Designs Abroad: Building Your Dream (2004), Kevin McCloud’s Principles of Home: Making a Place to Live (2011) and The Best of Grand Designs (2012), amongst others.
In 2007, he created HAB Housing Limited; they purchased two plots of land to build a housing development in Swindon, with the aim that the houses would be affordable and completely environmentally sustainable.
Kevin was awarded two honorary doctorates in 2005 from Plymouth and Oxford Brookes for making architecture more accessible. In 2014, he was awarded an MBE for his services to architecture. He is a patron of several architectural and sustainable charities, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Foresters, an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects and a WWF Ambassador.
– Sustainability & Sustainable Development
– The Environment
– TV Presenting
– Business Management
He has chaired many corporate events including The RICS Awards, The RIBA Awards, the Stirling Prize, the Aberdeen Sustainable Construction Conference, Bristol Planning Law and Policy Conference, The Northwest Property Awards, The Manchester Evening News Awards and the Edinburgh Quatermile Launch.
As the familiar and popular face of Grand Designs Live, as well as a number of other filmed and live programmes, Kevin is a confident speaker, and is available for corporate engagements, after-dinner and keynote speaking, Q&As and event hosting.
Kevin captured the tone and added to the overall value of the conference.
We have been delighted with the achievements across the show, and in particular with the part your conference played in ensuring a lively, interactive, thought-provoking and informative experience.
The event was a complete success; nothing but fantastic and positive feedback. Having Kevin there, presenting his expertly well-constructed view of Rome in architecture and how it has influenced other buildings worldwide, was a highlight for many. It was a great way to kick off this event.
Annual Internal Incentive Event for Gartner Inc.
Kevin was brilliant, absolutely charming to everyone he met, and his speech was just right, amusing but also plenty of serious content, discursive but never off point and generally highly entertaining.