In John Dowland v Architects Registration Board [2013] EWHC 893 (Admin), the Court dismissed a former architect's appeal against a refusal to re-enter him on the Register of Architects. He had previously been erased from the Register and was subject to a Bankruptcy Restriction Order.

The judgment is the first to interpret the rights of appeal available under the Architects Act 1997.

The High Court accepted that there was no right of appeal available and that the only challenge was by way of judicial review. No judicial review proceedings had been issued.  Mr Justice Simon went on, however, to consider the case as if it were a judicial review. This flexible approach allowed the merits to be considered in the round. Notwithstanding this approach the Architect was unsuccessful. The ARB had reached a fair and sustainable decision based on a comprehensive consideration of the relevant factors.

By way of background the Architect had failed to disclose his bankruptcy and was subject to a Bankruptcy Restrictions Order. The court found that he had not changed his attitude to his financial responsibilities. The judge held that the Architects Registration Board was entitled to take into account public protection and confidence in the profession in refusing to re-enter Mr Dowland on the Register of Architects.

John Gould and Tom Bradford acted for the Architects Registration Board.