IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


UCL honours philanthropist and design pioneer with Honorary Fellowship

7 September 2023

IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education and Society has recognised British philanthropist Lady Helen Hamlyn CBE with an Honorary Fellowship.

Lady Helen Hamlyn CBE

Lady Hamlyn was presented with the honour by Professor Kathy Armour, Vice-Provost (Education and Student Experience), in a ceremony today at the Royal Festival Hall, London, which celebrated the graduation of IOE undergraduate students.

Helen Hamlyn is one of Britain’s best-known philanthropists who, through the Helen Hamlyn Trust, has supported many causes which span the fields of medicine, arts and culture, education and welfare, healthy ageing, international humanitarian affairs and heritage and conservation in Portugal and India.

Alongside the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Pedagogy at UCL, the Trust’s many projects have included the Hamlyn Centre for Robotic Surgery at Imperial College London, complex restoration projects in India and latterly Portugal, the Royal Opera House in London, the London Symphony Orchestra and significantly, the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design at the Royal College of Art.

Lady Helen Hamlyn CBE said: “I feel very privileged to be receiving an honorary award from UCL. I’m very proud of the long-established work of the Helen Hamlyn Trust in education, and now with IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education and Society, in primary and early years. We continue to develop this work through the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Pedagogy (0 to 11 years) which is a major project for the Trust.

I look forward to HHCP’s continual growth and influence aimed at improving primary school education under the direction of Professor Dominic Wyse, Founding Director and Professor Alice Bradbury.”

Speaking at the ceremony, Professor Wyse said:

“For more than four decades, Helen has devoted herself to promoting a better environment and better-designed products, through her charitable foundation....It is entirely fitting that, now in her 90th year, this formidable philanthropist’s interests encompass the lifespan from designing for an ageing population to early years education. In an increasingly digital world she remains a passionate champion of practical, physical things that can make lives better.”

He added: “I am extremely pleased that Lady Helen Hamlyn has been awarded this honorary fellowship by UCL. As Founding Director of HHCP, I and my colleagues are very grateful for the vital support of Lady Hamlyn and the Helen Hamlyn Trust. Thanks to this support the HHCP continues to work on improvements to children’s education and life chances.

Lady Hamlyn’s award today is a recognition from UCL of the ground breaking work that the Helen Hamlyn Trust are doing in a range of carefully selected areas. Their contribution to education as a vital part of society, and to work in university education departments, is unique and essential.”