The late David Mellor stood by the principle that ‘well-designed equipment can improve your life’. His innumerable designs — from our traffic light system to steel bus shelters and the cutlery for which he was most renowned — achieved that. He showed star potential while training as a silversmith in the 1950s, with his ‘Pride’ cutlery set going straight into production. A key figure in post-war British design, he was named a Royal Designer for Industry in 1962. Until his retirement in 2005, when his son Corin Mellor (pictured) became creative director of the brand, he balanced hands-on craftsmanship with industrial design, seeing a product through from concept to customer. It’s a tradition that Corin has kept up: this year alone, he’s been busy with designs for a bridge in Sheffield and a sculptural bench for Chatsworth House, as well as launching a set of kitchen knives. With Corin flying the family flag and continuing David’s legacy, it’s the perfect time for David Mellor Design to win our award for Outstanding Contribution to Design.