About the Archistory Team
In 1994 Ben founded Ben Taggart Modelmaking & Design producing architectural models for private clients, property developers, museums and architects. These models not only represent the building but also reproduce the texture and character of each development perfectly in miniature. Notable projects have included a manor house built by Sir John Soane, Nonsuch Palace for The Friends of Nonsuch Palace, a model of Auschwitz for the Imperial War Museum and a model of Highgrove for His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales.
In the process of modelmaking Ben honed his skills as a draftsman. To construct any model, very detailed and accurate plans are required. Ben set about evolving a method of observational drawing, measurement and photographic notation that enabled him to produce exact scale drawings of any building. Ben then hit upon the idea of combining his love of architecture, his eye for detail and his training in typography and graphic design with his passion for history. He founded ‘Archistory’ in 2009.
Ben studied graphics at Central Saint Martin’s School of Art from 1987 to 1990, prior to that he had attended a Foundation course at The Central School of Art and Design. He seemed to be following the family path. His late father David was not only a talented painter but also a gifted designer. His mother Jenny still works as a portrait painter and illustrator.
On graduation Ben started work immediately for Gerry Judah Studio Ltd. There he worked as a designer and modelmaker, with clients including; Robinson Lanbie Nairn, BBC 1 and BBC 2 presentation graphics departments and Channel 4 graphics. In the mid-1990s Ben worked freelance for a wide range of companies from architects to theatre designers before starting his own business.
Paul Murray is the great-great grandson of Sir James Murray, editor of the first Oxford English Dictionary. Paul studied at Emmanuel College Cambridge and graduated with an MA in Modern Languages in 1985. He has spent many years as a copywriter, translator, local historian and teacher.
A multi-linguist, he was one of the translators on The Larousse Encyclopaedia of Wine, and worked in the early part of his career in France and Germany. He has also written brochure copy for Mór Design, and worked as a playwright for the award winning Wishbone Theatre Company.
In his colourful and varied career, Paul also teaches presentation and communication skills to company executives at the Oxford Said Business School and at the London Business School. He has also led similar courses as far afield as Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Singapore and South Africa
Paul began his work as a local historian when he was commissioned to write a short history of the grade II listed Aged Pilgrims’ Rest-home in Camberwell, London. This was followed by requests to write on other aspects of local history in the area.
Paul was thrilled to be asked to contribute to the Archistory project. For him, researching each property presents a different and fascinating challenge. There is always something exciting to be discovered about a home, its setting, and the colourful characters who may have lived in it. The joy of writing an ‘Archistory’ is being able to unlock those secrets.