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Tuesday29 July 2014

RMJM pays price for receivership

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Firm dropped by contractor on Scottish schools work

Building firm Kier has dropped RMJM from a schools scheme north of the border with the contractor blaming the architect’s decision to put its Scottish business into receivership for the move.

RMJM was carrying out work with Kier to revamp primary schools for South Lanarkshire Council which is spending more than £800 million modernising 124 schools.

Kier and RMJM had already worked together on a dozen schools for the council and last summer the pair were asked to start on a second tranche of work for a similar number.

rmjm south lanarks

One of the primary schools revamped by RMJM for South Lanarkshire Council

But Kier’s managing director of its operations in Scotland, Brian McQuade, confirmed it was now working with a replacement architect.

He told BD: “Kier’s contract with RMJM was automatically terminated when RMJM went into receivership and we have since put an interim arrangement in place with an alternative practice.”

BD understands Kier is now working with Stallan-Brand, the practice set up by former RMJM architects Paul Stallan and Alistair Brand. The pair were originally working with Kier on the scheme but left within days of each other back in January, setting up their new practice in the spring.

Last month, KPMG was appointed receiver for its RMJM Scotland, RMJM London and RMJM Ltd businesses. Hours after its appointment, KPMG oversaw the sale of the assets of each company – contracts and staff – to RMJM Architecture under a controversial pre-pack agreement.

RMJM and Stallan-Brand declined to comment.

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Readers' comments (14)

  • What would BD do without RMJM. How would you fill the pages?

    Let's give good old RMJM another good kicking, don't worry about the 400 people who are fighting fo

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  • for their very existence.

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  • @ Rumpy Pumpy

    The article is hardly "kicking" RMJM, it's just a chronicle of events that have taken place.

    I think your concern for "The 400" ought better be deployed into ire against the appalling top tier management who have allowed such a protracted death thrall to grip a once successful firm.

    As the saying goes, "don't shoot the messenger".

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  • Is that seriously a primary school in the photo, not a distribution shed?

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  • This seemingly endless RMJM saga could replace "Dallas".

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  • Mike Duriez

    The new RMJM Architecture should form a collaborative Zero Fee Relationship with Sanctuary Housing Association. This could be enabled by unpaid staff and unpaid suppliers. Faithful & Gould and RMJM Architecture directors would receive lucrative consultancy fees (naturally more that the overall cost of employing a well run architecture firm to do all the work), but otherwise Sanctuary would get free building design services.

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  • RUM JUM YAWN.

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  • Rumpy Stumpy

    Really don't care who shoots JR in this saga but someone please do it!

    Have to agree with George - that is a pretty sad looking 'school'.

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  • Kier and RMJM seem to have worked out fine in the past... not sure that the receivership changes anything? They may have jumped the gun.

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  • Yes Justin, is that Keir and RMJM that worked out fine in the past, or is it perhaps Keir and the people they worked with in RMJM that made the relationship work? i.e. Stallan-Brand. Is it a matter of receivership or is it trust? It seems Keir have made it clear what they think. Will be interesting to see if any other clients choose not to renew their contracts with the new co.

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