Richard started his career in the technical drawing office of Bath Cabinet Makers. After 5 years as a Prisoner of War, he returned to the United Kingdom, and qualified as a structural engineer. He worked in the exhibition sector, then as a structural engineer for Shell and Constructors John Brown, specialising in power stations and defence installations. He understood the engineering challenges arising from the new North Sea oil industry, and became one of the country’s leading corrosion engineers and was a member of several QUANGO’s reporting on the safety of oil rigs. As a Company Director, he became interested in renewable energy, and the business was an early investor in wind turbine technology.

Richard was a practical and forward-thinking man, who enjoyed working at the cutting edge of design and technology, and he jointly held several technical patents for his corrosion work.

His hobbies were typically wide-ranging: he was a talented musician, singer and conductor, he designed, built and raced model yachts and gliders at national level, played chess for Somerset, won national competitions for rifle shooting at Bisley, and his chosen sports were fencing, hockey, cricket and bowls.

Richard came from a musical family, and could read music before being able to read a book. His father worked for Gillows, and he learned the luthier’s craft from members of his family. Only a viola and cello of his are known to have survived.

This Award has been established as a fitting tribute to an exceptional man who lived life to the full. He was always positive about the future, believing that difficult design problems could be solved creatively by using existing and new materials in an innovative way. He was interested in people and ideas, and committed to giving the next generation the opportunity of achieving the personal and professional success which he enjoyed.

Image: Jamie McCartney, in collaboration with Vicky Ball. Portrait of Richard Seager by Brighton Body Casting Studio.