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Minister responds to Part 2 bid

Communities minister Andrew Stunell has admitted the Architects Act creates an ‘unfavourable outcome’ for Part 2 qualified workers in his response to a Association for Part Two Architects’ (TAPTA) challenge

However Stunell has dismissed calls to shake-up the current legislation and registration process.

Earlier this month the association’s founder, Paul McGrath, wrote to Liberal Democrat MP Stunell highlighting a ‘discrepancy’ which allows Part 2 equivalent qualified workers from EU countries to become ARB registered while those in the UK need to take the additional Part 3 exam before being allowed to call themselves ‘an architect’.

In response the minister said: ‘It is unfortunate that in some circumstances this appears to create an unfavourable outcome for Part 2 Graduates.’

McGrath said: ‘[This] is about a far as the minister could have gone in backing our campaign for fair recognition of the Part 2 qualification without upsetting the RIBA, the ARB or the Schools of Architecture.’

His letter also called for a ‘two-tier’ system of registration as part of a bid to allow Part 2s to operate as architects, but Stunell rejected this idea.

The ARB has refused McGrath to enter onto the register. McGrath added: ‘The ‘British way’ of gold-plating the Part 3 exam above the minimum standards for an architect set by Europe must be challenged. What sticks in my throat is that everyone has known about this injustice for years but has done nothing about it.’

Official comment from the RIBA

‘The newly formed TAPTA does highlight the current anomaly of different levels of architectural qualification across the EU which the ARB is obliged to recognise due to EU legislation.  The RIBA has consistently campaigned for parity of recognised professional qualifications across the EU.’ 


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