Firm, one of largest UK architects, has already laid off 70 staff to try and keep itself afloat

One of the country’s biggest architects Austin-Smith:Lord has filed for a company voluntary agreement (CVA) to stave off insolvency.

The firm has filed for the CVA to lessen its payments to its creditors, while continuing to trade.

It is understood that the company’s financial problems are down to not being paid by a client in Abu Dhabi, where it won a commission in July for work on the emirate’s cultural quarter.

Last week the firm said it would make 70 people redundant because of its financial trouble. Thirty staff are to go from its regional offices in Manchester, Cardiff, Liverpool and Glasgow and a further 40 will go from its London office.

High profile projects designed by Austin-Smith:Lord include the £50m renovation of the Central Liverpool Library.