A newly qualified architect has lashed out at the Architect's Registration Board for what he sees as gross overcharging on his registration fee.Ray Holden of Agenda 21 Architects applied for registration earlier this month after qualifying from the South Bank University and has been charged the full £55 annual registration for just six weeks until the end of the year - effectively nine times more than the standard rate for the whole 12 months.The ARB has asked him to pay a further £55 for 2001, starting on 1 January, and officials said there was no way he could pay less for a shorter period.'This is my first contact with the ARB and I can firmly say it is one of dismay, 'the 25 year old said.
In an angry letter to the ARB chief executive Robin Vaughan, Holden wrote: 'I now invite you to show your new members that you are there to provide a service and not just to receive their cash.'
Vaughan has yet to deal with the complaint but the AJ understands that the ARB will consider changing the system in December to charge new architects' fees on a pro rata basis.
The row follows declining registration numbers at the ARB.Last year the number of registered architects dipped below 30,000 for the first time in 10 years,2,175 fewer architects than in 1990.
Schwarz said that on average, only 30 per cent of the decision making process to choose a PFI consortium to design and build a new hospital is design led and The picture for the procurement process of education buildings is brighter, according to Allford Hall Monaghan Morris architect, Susan Le Good, who is designing the new Tulse Hill School in Lambeth.'Aspiration for design was a strong part of the brief throughout the procurement process, 'she said.