Frank Anatole​, Principal Architect, Network Rail – Episode 59

For this episode of Architecture Masters we’re joined by Frank Anatole, Principal Architect at Network Rail.

Network Rail oversees a vast network of built environment infrastructure across the UK including over 2,500 stations, 30,000 bridges and tunnels, as well as countless maintenance depots, signal boxes and other infrastructure buildings that all too often go unseen.

Frank and his team don’t generally design new projects themselves – much of that is done by external architecture practices – but rather they oversee the process of setting design standards, policy and long-term planning, as well as the process of assuring that external designs are fit for purpose.

But both Frank and his colleague Anthony Dewar, Network Rail’s Professional Head of Buildings and Architecture, have focused improving on the organisation’s design ambition, including through ambitious new design principles.

Frank Anatole
Frank Anatole. Image Credit: Julia Anatole

All forms of design have long played a role in the evolution in British Railways. The iconic double arrow logo, originally of British Rail, is still one of the countries most recognised logos. And an exhibition at the Design Museum in London currently celebrates the graphic design legacy of Margaret Calvert’s work on the railways.

Frank started his career working at Hampshire County Council Architects, before spending a formative period working in Paris on a number of French Station designs. Back in the UK he worked for a number of practices, including a decade at Marks Barfield where he worked on the London Eye, and i360 in Brighton,

I joined Frank down the line from his home in Kent.