Sir Roger Scruton has died. We lose the greatest contemporary English philosopher and an irreplaceable voice for Burkean conservatism. A statement from his family reads:
It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Sir Roger Scruton, FBA, FRSL. Beloved husband of Sophie, adored father to Sam and Lucy and treasured brother of Elizabeth and Andrea, he died peacefully on Sunday 12th January. He was born on 27th February 1944 and had been fighting cancer for the last 6 months. His family are hugely proud of him and of all his achievements. (12.01.2020)
At the time of his death Sir Roger was working on the government’s Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission. He had been appointed, removed, and finally reinstated as a commissioner in 2019. I wrote about his appointment at the time.
The commission has now published its report, Living with Beauty. The entire report is compelling, accessible, and worth reading. Its recommendations fall under three broad aims: Ask for Beauty, Refuse Ugliness, and Promote Stewardship. Specific recommendations include a “fast track” for beauty and a “re-greening” of towns and cities.
The report has been received warmly by the government, and if acted upon will be a worthy legacy for Sir Roger who has been a crusader for traditional architecture and urban planning.