An estimated 400 jobs have been lost in architect practices in Northern Ireland over the last 12 months
The figure represents 20 per cent of the workforce, with staff either being made redundant or not replaced since the downturn in the construction industry began. One hundred and twenty were architects and the rest were administrative and technical staff.
A survey by the Royal Society of Ulster Architects surveyed every architect in Northern Ireland, with 30 per cent saying there was not enough work.
A similar survey by the Royal Society in the Republic of Ireland showed the situation to be worse with 40 per cent of people in practices losing their jobs in the last year.
In March, figures from the Office for National Statistics in the UK revealed architects claiming benefits had risen by 760 per cent in a year.
Alan Jones, of Belfast-based Alan Jones Architects, said: ‘My practice has seen a drop in enquiries and so I’ve moved into teaching for the forseeable future.
‘But if it’s bad here then its worse in Dublin. I’ve heard horror stories of more than half of architects being laid off. We’ve had lots of CVs coming from down south.’