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Architect of scaffold collapse scheme 'keeps schtum' - image

A veil of secrecy has been thrown over the architectural firm behind the project which suffered yesterday's dramatic scaffold collapse in Milton Keynes.

Northern Irish-based Consarc Design has refused to say anything or issue a statement about the extraordinary incident.

The practice has been working with contractor McAleer and Rushe, also from the province, for over two years.

About 200 workmen had a 'miraculous' escape yesterday after 15 floors of scaffolding collapsed 'like a pack of cards' at the hotel building site.

Desperate workers apparently leapt through windows at the half-constructed Jurys Inn Hotel in Milton Keynes as tons of metal and wood began crashing down.

Although senior figures at Consarc have refused to comment on the dramatic collapse, Eamonn Laverty, managing director of the contractor, has released a statement.

'It was like slow motion, as one of the site managers described it,' he said.

'It took several seconds for it to happen, but then they immediately set about rescuing the three injured workers and the rescue team went to check to see if there were any other people trapped in the wreckage.'

Laverty added it was the first time that such an incident had happened on one of their sites.

by Ed Dorrell

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