Catherine Ramsden

Founding Director

Catherine founded Useful Studio in 2013 and directs the practice while also serving on the Executive Board, as Deputy Chair, for the Useful Simple Trust. She is actively involved in Social Enterprise UK and B Corp UK, serving as Co-Chair of the B Corp Built Environment Group. 

Catherine is a highly experienced designer in architecture, urbanism and in public realm including footbridges. Her lean design approach and social purpose is fuelled by a passion for efficiency and positive impact which results in a natural timeless elegance in her work. The early years of her career focussed on planning and urban design working with WRT in California on significant environmental projects including strategic masterplans for Mission Bay and Balboa Park in San Diego as well as a townscape scheme for Santa Cruz. During a decade at Foster + Partners, as Associate Partner, Catherine's key projects included Albion Riverside affordable housing with the Peabody Trust, the Millennium Bridge and the Thomas Deacon Academy.

Her first degree in Environmental Design was at the University of Colorado, Boulder and she has a Masters of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania, where she was granted scholarships for academic performance throughout, graduating top of the class. Her education also included a year in Copenhagen.