FURTHER proof that Brexit is already damaging important parts of the British economy came yesterday with the news that the majority of architects across the UK have had building work delayed or even cancelled due to the referendum result in 2016.

The information emerged yesterday when the Royal Institute of British Architects (Riba) issued its latest Global Designs report, which contains “a stark Brexit warning from architects across the UK.”

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The institute added: “With one year to go until we leave the European Union, the report makes an urgent call for the UK Government to ensure that the UK’s architecture sector can continue to be globally successful.”

In the survey which formed part of the report, more than two-thirds of UK architects reported that building projects had been put on hold since the referendum.

More than a third said they had projects cancelled in 2017 because of the uncertainty of Brexit. Now Riba’s members are demanding a proper trade and professional recognition deal that enables them to stay in the single market and employ European talent.

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The report states that 74 per cent of UK architects want “frictionless access” to the European single market and say that is a priority for expanding international work.

More than 20 per cent of the 40,000 architects working in the UK are from the EU, and the survey found 60 per cent of EU architects have considered leaving – a big rise since a similar survey in 2016, when 40 per cent said they had considered leaving because of Brexit.

Riba chief executive Alan Vallance said: “Many EU architects continue to face uncertainty about their future in the UK. This is unsustainable.

“It is having a real-time impact on recruitment and is unquestionably a threat to the success of our economy and society. The UK Government must make urgent decisions that allow the sector to thrive today.”

Riba President Ben Derbyshire said: “2018 is a critical year for UK architecture. We need urgent action from the government if we are to stem the talent exodus and inspire confidence.”