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Government scuttles RIBA hopes of ARB takeover

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The Government has officially confirmed the ARB will be retained, ending the RIBA’s hopes of taking over its functions

In a letter sent to the board Andrew Stunell, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State responsible for the Architects Act, claimed there was no compelling case to change the current regulatory system having considered ‘alternatives to the current model’ (see attached).

Among the ‘alternatives’ was a potential takeover of professional regulation by the RIBA which, according to reports, had been lobbying the government since May to make good Ed Vaizey’s pre-election pledge to scrap the ARB.

Stunell has now called for a meeting between RIBA President Ruth Reed and ARB chair Beatrice Fraenkel and asked the two organisations ‘to work closely together in order to support the work of architects and in addressing our priorities on climate change’.

Responding to the letter, Frankel said: ‘I was delighted to receive the attached letter to be invited, along with Ruth Reed, to meet the Minister to discuss how we can work together collaboratively, recognising the respective roles of ARB and RIBA . This can only enhance the opportunities we have between us to support the profession and protect the consumer.’

Key passage from letter

‘As you will be aware from the announcement of the Arms Length Body Review, it has been decided to retain ARB in its current form.’A strong case remains for architectural regulation to be independent from Government to ensure the continued standing and reputation of the architectural profession. In considering the alternatives to the current model of Architects’ Regulation I took into account a broad range of considerations and came to the view that the case for change was not compelling.’

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Readers' comments (3)

  • So the Government ignore a pre-election pledge and then pass over the opportunity to save money by disbanding a quango .... does anyone know what they are doing ?

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  • It was always going to be difficult to persuade the 33% of architects who are "unattached" that they should come under the jurisdiction of and be regulated by the RIBA, when as a matter of choice they had decided not to become members.

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  • When they come together can they agree to a 25% reduction of combined fees then?
    What does ARB do for 50 quid a year apart from sending out unnecessary paper about PII?

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