Richards was chairman of multidisciplinary consultant Robert Matthew Johnson-Marshall & Partners in Edinburgh from 1983 to 1986.
He was also president of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland from 1983 to 1984.

As chairman of RMJM, Richards was responsible for prominent buildings in Scotland, including the Royal Commonwealth pool in Edinburgh. The pool, completed in 1970, has been praised for merging its large bulk into parkland at the foot of Salisbury Crags and for its control of glare and condensation.

Richards also designed Stirling University campus, recently named as a top UK heritage site of the 20th century.

He had an enduring devotion to industrialised building and prefabrication, as his work on Aberdeen and Edinburgh airport terminals and IBM's industrial sheds outside Greenock demonstrate.