Builder Clinton Gadd and his company ABM Building Services of Crawley, West Sussex have each been convicted of four counts of the criminal offence of misusing the title ‘architect’
Crawley Magistrates’ Court heard that Gadd, 55, the company director, had carried out business using the word ‘architect’ by displaying it on the company’s website as well as its Twitter and Google profiles.
This was despite not being registered as an architect himself or employing someone appropriately registered as an architect.
The prosecution was brought by industry regulator the Architects Registration Board.
The court took into account that Gadd had contacted the web designer to remedy the breaches and made an early guilty plea.
But the magistrates also noted that Gadd had been contacted by ARB on several occasions and that he could have done more to remedy the breaches. The court imposed a penalty of £6,369, which include the fine, costs and a victim surcharge, split between the two defendants – the individual and the company – in addition to the criminal convictions for both.
The ARB said: ‘It is hoped that criminal convictions, fines and the negative publicity associated with title misuse prosecutions will act as a deterrent for those who may otherwise have used the title illegally.
‘In regulating misuse of the title ‘architect’, ARB’s objective is to limit the harm as swiftly and effectively as possible.’
According to the ARB, Gadd and ABM Building Services will have 28 days to make the necessary changes.
The board said it would ‘continue to monitor their trading style and take further appropriate action as necessary’.