On 4 July 2019 Mr Andrew Feasey of Colchester and the company CPS Architecture + Design Limited (CPS Architecture) were both convicted of five counts of the criminal offence of misusing the title ‘architect’. Colchester Magistrates’ Court heard that Mr Feasey, the director of CPS Architecture was carrying out business under the name, style or title containing the word “architect” despite not being registered or employing someone appropriately registered as an architect under the Architects Act 1997. ARB had contacted Mr Feasey on numerous occasions since early November 2018 regarding his continued use of the title, but these warnings were not heeded.
There were five charges in relation to misuse of the title architect which had appeared on Mr Feasey’s occupation listing on Companies House, his company website and on various business directories such as Yelp, Touch Local and Plentific. Taking into consideration the public interest in people not advertising services that they are not qualified to offer the Court imposed a total fine of £10,000 (split evenly between the defendants), a victim surcharge of £100 and costs of £2,389.70 to be paid within 28 days.
Magistrates determine the amount of the fine and related costs after considering the nature of the offence and any mitigation put forward by the defendant. These fines are paid to HM Treasury, not to ARB.
It is hoped that the criminal convictions, fines and the negative publicity associated with cases such as this will act as a deterrent for others who may use the title illegally.
Notes for Editors
ARB is the statutory body established by Parliament under the Architects Act 1997 to regulate the UK architects’ profession in the public interest. The Act requires ARB (among other things) to:
- Maintain the Register of Architects (Section 3)
- Prescribe qualifications for entry to the Register of Architects (Section 4)
- Deal with competence to practise (Section 9)
- Issue a Code which lays down standards of professional conduct and practice (Section 13)
- Regulate use of the title “architect” and prosecute those who use it unlawfully (Section 20)
The maximum fine for each offence, currently £2500, is set by the Architects Act 1997. Magistrates determine the amount of the fine (and related costs) after considering the nature of the offence and any mitigation put forward by the defendant. Money raised from fines is paid to HM Treasury, not to ARB.
For further information, please contact Kate Howlett, Communications Lead on 020 7580 5861 or by email at KateH@arb.org.uk.