‘Visionary’ designer Terence Conran dies aged 88

Designer, retailer and restaurateur Terence Conran has died aged 88, his family said in a statement.

Born in Kingston upon Thames in 1931, Mr Conran began his career making and selling furniture in London.

He went on to open restaurants across the capital before launching Habitat in 1964.

In a statement released on Saturday, his family said he “passed away peacefully today at his Barton Court home”.

They described the Design Museum founder as a “visionary who enjoyed an extraordinary life and career”.

The statement went on: “From the late forties to the present day, his energy and creativity thrived in his shops, restaurants, bars, cafes and hotels and through his many design, architecture and furniture making businesses.

“Founding The Design Museum in London was one of his proudest moments and through its endeavours he remained a relentless champion of the importance of education to young people in the creative industries.”

The statement added: “Sir Terence enjoyed a remarkable life to the full and always maintained that his work never felt like a job – everything he did for business he would have done for pleasure.”

The chairman of the board of trustees at the Design Museum said Mr Conran “leaves a treasure trove of household and industrial design that will stay with us forever”.

Peter Mandelson added: “He is one of the most iconic figures of post-war Britain, starting to recast the world of design when as a young man he joined the team working on the 1951 Festival of Britain and never stopping from that moment on.”

<figcaption class='imgFCap'>Terence Conran has died aged 88 (Matthew Fearn/PA)</figcaption>
Terence Conran has died aged 88 (Matthew Fearn/PA)

Mr Conran’s family shared his eye for business and design.

His sister Priscilla Carluccio helped to start the Carluccio’s cafe restaurant chain with her chef ex-husband Antonio Carluccio.

His five children – Sebastian, Jasper, Tom, Sophie and Ned – from his four marriages have each forged successful careers in the creative sector.