Acoustics Conference

Speaker Profiles

Dr Sharon Wright


Sharon has been involved with school capital projects for the past 15 years.  She works with Local Authorities, Multi Academy Trusts, Contractors and Architects to support the design process across the UK and internationally.


Previously Sharon spent 12 years in the Civil Service working on education and employment policy and was a Fellow in Organisational Development with OPM before becoming Managing Director of the not for profit company School Works. She is a Doctor in Education from King’s College London and co-author of the RIBA Publication, Future Schools : Innovative Design for Existing and New Buildings.


Helen Taylor
Scott Brownrigg

Helen joined Scott Brownrigg in 2014 as Director of Practice. Whilst she is based in the London office, Helen is responsible for the strategic planning and implementation of programmes to maintain and enhance the high levels of technical competence and expertise across the whole practice, to ensure legal and best practice compliance.  She is also responsible for all practice and project related Health and Safety compliance. As well as specialising in education design, particularly Academies, Free Schools and University Technical Colleges, Helen’s commitment to sustainability, diversity and inclusive design, will support the implementation of new initiatives to assist the practice in achieving its quality management, sustainability and corporate responsibility objectives.


Prof Bridget Shield 
South Bank University

Professor Shield is Professor Emerita at London South Bank University and a Visiting Professor at Brunel University London.  She retired as Professor of Acoustics at London South Bank University in 2014 after nearly 30 years of teaching, research and consultancy in environmental and architectural acoustics.  She has received many government research  grants and is the author of over 130 published papers.  Her research interests have included prediction of industrial noise, community response to railway noise, concert hall acoustics, annoyance caused by low frequency noise, hospital noise and acoustics and the effects of noise and poor acoustics in schools on children and teachers.  In 2006 Professor Shield was the author of a report published by Hear-It on the social and economic consequences of hearing loss, and she was a joint author of the Department of Health report on the effects of environmental noise on health, published in 2010. For many years she has advised the Department for Education on regulations for the acoustic design of schools.  


Professor Shield is an Honorary Fellow of the UK Institute of Acoustics and a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America.  She was awarded the Institute of Acoustics R W B Stephens medal and the Noise Abatement Society John Connell Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011. Professor Shield was President of the Institute of Acoustics from 2012 to 2014.  

Emma Greenland
Emma is an Associate Director for WSP's Acoustic Team in the UK, specialising in architectural acoustics, design of rooms for speech intelligibility and privacy, and acoustics for public address/voice alarm (PA/VA) systems. She is an expert in acoustics for open space planning (classrooms, offices, and multipurpose atria).  Emma provides advice to both Clients and Contractors on acoustic design for education spaces.

Emma’s award winning PhD research, publications and project experience enabled her to advise and contribute to the DfE’s Building bulletin 93 and the accompanying design guide, which updates acoustic performance standards for schools and open plan classrooms. Emma has represented several Institute level committees which influence the acoustics agenda (IoA, ANC). She also advised DfE and Partnerships for Schools on changes to the School Premises Regulations and on the Spaces for Personalised Learning Project (S4PL).


Shane Cryer

Shane Cryer manages the education sector in the UK and Ireland for Swedish acoustic experts, Ecophon. After a career in the construction industry, having studied building and property surveying, he now concentrates on building acoustics. Working closely with organisations such as The Institute of Acoustics (IOA) and the RIBA, Shane has been promoting BB93: Acoustic Design of Schools standard via CPD seminars, conferences and articles in the trade press. Shane also manages several acoustic research projects around the UK and is involved in the Australian ILETC research programme for school environments.

Peter Rogers
Sustainable Acoustics

Peter is a Fellow of the Institute of Acoustics and a Chartered Engineer. Peter has over 20 years’ experience delivering noise and vibration solutions on a wide variety of projects. He began his career in Local Authority and therefore has a good understanding of what they need, and where liaison is concerned. He then moved to consultancy and specialises in Building Acoustics and Environmental Noise and Vibration control. He has worked on prestigious projects from the Millennium Stadium, Wimbledon Centre Court, O2, Olympia, Guys & St Thomas Hospital, Olympic Park Licensing and numerous schools to name a few.  With Willmott Dixon he has been involved in a number of projects over the years, including Heartlands School,  WWF HQ Woking, Material Science Metallurgy Building for the Cambridge University and Giltspur Street London, which is next to St Barts Hospital. He is now the Managing Director of Sustainable acoustics and remains an active engineer

Russell Richardson
RBA Acoustics

Russell has worked in acoustics since 1992, initially undertaking research for Celestion Loudspeakers and Philips Electronics and then in commercial consultancy for several years before co-founding RBA Acoustics in 2002.  RBA has since grown to be one of the largest independent acoustics consultancies in the UK, working on projects around the world.


He is a contributing author of the Association of Noise Consultants’ Good Practice Guide for Schools and the companion guide for Building Bulletin 93: Acoustics of Schools - a design guide.  He has served on the board of the Association of Noise Consultants as both Hon. Secretary and Hon. Treasurer.  He remains a member of the ANC Certification Committee and is the Chief Examiner for the ANC Registration Scheme. 


He is Chairman of the Robust Details Inspectorate and the Hon. Secretary of the Institute of Acoustics, sitting on the Executive board and the governing Council.


Stuart Whyte
British Association of Teachers of the Deaf (BATOD)

Stuart Whyte is an Educational Audiologist at the University of Southampton.  As part of the Auditory Implant Service he works in partnership with the NHS to provide cochlear implants, middle ear implants and bone conduction devices and he supports rehabilitation.

Stuart lectures on the University’s MSc Audiology course and is actively involved with research in the field of assistive listening devices. Stuart has undertaken acoustic assessments and represented Local Authorities with the aim of providing better learning spaces and has written a number of articles on school acoustics.  He is the immediate Past President of the British Association of Teachers of the Deaf (BATOD) and is the current Chair of the UK Children’s Radio Aid Working group which has representatives from the sectors of industry, health, education, professional associations and national charities.  The group’s aims include raising awareness of the importance of a positive acoustic environment.



Adrian James
Adrian James Acoustics

In 1994 Adrian James established Adrian James Acoustics, an independent consultancy specialising in the acoustic design of buildings for the performing arts and education.  The practice has since expanded into other areas of acoustics and noise control, and has undertaken more than a thousand commissions of all sizes in the UK, mainland Europe and the Middle East.  He was a principal author of the DfES Building Bulletin 93 “Acoustics of Schools” and continues to advise government departments and several county councils on the acoustics of buildings for education. Adrian has chaired a number of technical committees and working groups on acoustic measurements, and has published and presented papers in English and French on a wide range of acoustic subjects.  He is a Fellow of the Institute of Acoustics and a past Chairman of the Association of Noise Consultants


Crawford Wright
Education & Skills Funding Agency

Crawford Wright is head of design at the ESFA. He is responsible for setting technical and design standards for all DFE delivered new and refurbished schools. Crawford is a chartered architect and has been involved in school capital delivery for over ten years, working on academies and free schools as well as leading the UTC and Studio schools programme.


He began his career in social housing and estate regeneration before working on policy in a number of local authorities before returning to construction through project management of capital in the public sector and was head of capital projects at Bristol City Council and programme director at Devon County council.


Crawford is committed to ensuring the ESFA learns from buildings in use and bringing evidence based practice to bear on future school designs and has launched a major research project involving post occupational evaluation and building performance evaluation of school environments.


Jack Harvie-Clark
Association of Noise Consultants

Jack H-C is the current Chair of the Association of Noise Consultants, a previous Chair of the ANC Schools Committee, and an active contributing member of the committee that re-wrote the current version of BB 93.  He coordinated, contributed to and produced the joint Institute of Acoustics / Association of Noise Consultants publication to accompany the revised performance standards - Acoustics of Schools - A Design Guide. 


Jack founded Apex Acoustics in 2006, and this consultancy has grown to 15 members with two offices, and consults across the built environment.  Jack has a keen personal interest in research into acoustics in schools, much of which is published on the Apex website.