John Morton obituary

By Alan Powers

Architect and designer who in the 1960s created flat-pack furniture before setting the standard for shared office spaces

The architect and designer John Morton, who has died aged 97, was one half of Lupton Morton, a leading manufacturer of modern furniture in the 1950s and 60s responsible for the popular Campus range, and an innovator in shared workspaces.

After creating a dual reputation in traditional craftsmanship and high-end industrial design with Tom Lupton, a fellow Architectural Association student, Morton grasped the opportunity offered by the expansion of the universities in the early 60s. He initiated the Living and Learning exhibition, touring towns where new universities were planned. The outcome was Campus, a range of flat-pack self-assembly furniture. By 1967, 18 universities had purchased Campus, and it was also sold to the public through a number of innovative schemes. One direct marketing campaign, through the Sunday Times’ colour supplement, accepted payment by Visa credit card, then a novel idea; at weekends it was sold directly from the factory in Wallingford, on the Thames in Oxfordshire..

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