Purcell says Brexit to blame for profit fall

Purcell's proposals for a new graduate centre at St Catherine's College in Oxford

Source: Purcell Architects

Purcell’s proposals for a new graduate centre at St Catherine’s College in Oxford

Clients worrying about Brexit have been blamed for turnover and profit falling at heritage architect Purcell last year.

The firm, which earlier this month landed work on the prized scheme to refurbish the National Portrait Gallery in the middle of London with Jamie Fobert, said income fell 5% to £20.2m while pre-tax profit slumped nearly a quarter to just over £2m.

In a statement accompanying its results, the firm said: “Turnover decreased due to the uncertainty following the Brexit referendum and the subsequent downturn in new business.”

Chief executive Mark Goldspink added: ”We carried out a strategic review in early 2017 in order to position the group strongly for these market conditions and have now returned to profitability.”

More than 90% of its turnover comes from the UK where its schemes include new graduate facilities on the campus of Arne Jacobsen’s grade I-listed St Catherine’s College in Oxford (pictured).

The work on the National Portrait Gallery off Trafalgar Square includes increasing gallery and public visitor space by 20%, revamping the entrance and creating a learning resource centre. The project will also include rehanging the gallery’s collection of portraits.