Trial over breach of contract allegations expected to last 16 days

The architect facing a £3.5m claim against it over the design of the Musuem of Liverpool has appointed a host of expert witnesses as part of its defence.

Building revealed last November that the museum had made a £3.5m claim against architect AEW alleging that the building had serious technical problems, including dangerous and defective outdoor steps and ceiling problems linked to a collapse that injured a workman.

AEW has turned to the forensic services division of Capita Symonds, appointing director and structural engineer John Wasilewski and architect Richard Pepper, to defend itself over its work on the £72m building. It is also employing QS Robert Mathews from BPP Consultants.

Meanwhile, the Museum of Liverpool has taken on architect Roger Jowett, a partner at specialist practice Bickerdike Allen and an expert in the technical investigation of building problems, as expert witness.

Following the filing of AEW’s defence in February, a trial date has been set a year from now. The trial is expected to last 16 days.

The museum has accused AEW of a breach of contract over the problems with the building. In its defence, AEW said the museum overreacted in removing ceilings and seeking to replace the steps and terrace.