Architectural Historian and keeper of the Soane Museum, 1945-1984. Summerson's father was Samuel James Summerson (d. 1907) and mother Dorothea Worth Newenham (d. 1963). His grandfather, Thomas Summerson was director of the steel foundry in Darlington responsible for the first public railway in England. After his father's death when he was three, his moved frequently in England and Europe. He attended school at Riber Castle, Derbyshire, before the Harrow School beginning in 1918. Here he became an outstanding organist.