A London architect has been fined £2,000 by the ARB, know why?

In January 2017, Toyin Oduse, a London based architect and founder of Abbey Wood-based SE2 Creatives was hired to extend the client’s home based on another architect’s consented design. The job should have been completed in 4 months. 

However, things didn’t go well when Oduse later accepted extra cash in return for building his client a bigger extension without having proper planning permission!

After a complaint made by a neighbour to the local authorities, a planning investigation officer warned the client that planning consent was required for the additional 1m.

Oduse argued the point that planning advice was not his responsibility as he was hired as a building contractor. The Professional Conduct Committee countered by bringing into light Oduse’s own admission in which he said that the client hired a regulated architect to avoid working with a ‘cowboy’. 

Undue delay

The architect behind the original extension design submitted another planning application which was accepted and given consent in December 2018. 

The investigation further found Oduse guilty of delaying his client’s project. In April 2017, Oduse applied for the extension for his client after being warned by the council. However, his application was rejected both by the local authority as well as at the appeal. 

Oduse was then instructed by the ARB to return to the site and finish the project, which he failed to do so by September 2019. 

The Decision

The ARB found Oduse guilty of unacceptable professional conduct for having failed to warn his client about the need for planning permission and for delaying the project unnecessarily. The Professional Conduct Committee declared Oduse had ‘had little or no insight until he had read the decision’ but ‘apologised and stated he had learned a lot from the hearing’ once the decision was put into action.

The full judgement is available here.

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