The UK Home Office had announced its plans to issue special visas both to architects who have shown outstanding talent and those with promise in their field to live and work in Britain after Brexit.
This will be opened to applicants from the 10th of January, 2019. Effective from then, architects will then be able to submit applications for the UK Tier 1 visa. This visa will also be known as the Exceptional Talent visa and will be available for application for £608 and can give its holder the permit to stay In the UK for up to 5 years.
This scheme is intended to provide European architects who have the exceptional talent the opportunity to work in Britain when it exits from the European Union.
Margot James, Britain’s Minister for creative industries, said the UK has a vibrant architecture sector that boasts of top-class talents of international repute such as Amanda Levete and Renzo Piano.
The minister went on to say that the creative industry was an important and crucial part of Britain’s economy, what with its worth hitting over £100 billion. She also added that the government was committed to giving the sector the support it needs and with the introduction of these new visas, architectural practices in the UK will find it easier to hire the talented hands they need to thrive in the future.
Levete in a previous warning to the government had clearly stated that the uncertainty hovering over Brexit was putting the UK’s future with creative talents in jeopardy. She disclosed that she was also weighing her options in moving her practice to Paris partially as a result of this uncertainty.
The government working out a solution
Meanwhile, the UK’s Home Office has already joined forces with Royal Institute of British Architects; the Arts Council, England, and the Department of Digital Culture, Media and Sport to develop an immigration route explicitly tailored for architects.
There will be two options for architects with this new scheme:
- The “exceptional talent” immigration route will be for architects who have proof of their international recognition as leaders in the profession. They will also provide a history of awards they won in the past. These architects will become eligible to apply for a permanent residence permit after a three-year stay in the UK.
- The “exceptional promise” route will serve those who can provide proof of their achievements which must show that they have the potential to become leaders in the architectural profession. They will become eligible to apply for permanent residency after staying in the UK for 5 years.
This Tier 1 visa will open doors for architects to work, or even operate their own practice in the UK.
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