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ARB leafleting campaign compares RIBA to union

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The arb has been handing out leaflets to students comparing the riba to a trade union. The leaflet, 'Some frequently asked questions about the Architects Registration Board', composed and distributed by a liaison officer, has now been withdrawn by the arb following representations from riba director of education Leonie Milliner.

The leaflet was brought to the attention of riba council by George Oldham who teaches at the University of Newcastle. It has apparently been in use for several months, although neither Marco Goldschmied nor Joyce Deans, both of whom sit on the arb, was aware of its existence.

In response to the question 'What is the difference between arb and the riba?' the leaflet includes the statement ' . . . like any membership organisation, its [riba's] remit extends only to its own members. As a professional body who acts in the interests of its members, it may be helpful to think of riba as being like a trade union of architects.'

riba president David Rock said that the leaflet was a contradiction of the riba's charter, which says that it exists for the promotion of architecture. Paul Hyett, vice-president for education, said that in visits to 22 schools of architecture in the last year, he had found 'an astonishing level of misunderstanding about the role of the arb and the riba'.

The next tube station improvement will be delayed

London Underground is postponing station improvements, worth £1 billion, after running into trouble with its Public Private Partnership initiative to dovetail finance from both sectors.

lu said that ppps, announced last year and meant to start in 2000, would be a year late and delay most projects. 'We are slowing down building projects to ensure we don't go from feast to famine,' said a spokesman. 'Most schemes will now take a year longer to complete. It was too ambitious to do work over two years, especially when it can only be done when stations are closed. The government needs more time to get ready for ppps and we don't know what money will be available next year.'

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