Consortium to sue DH over axed £900m deal

6 November 2009

6 November 2009 | Adam McNestrie

A Laing O'Rourke-led consortium has commenced legal proceedings against the UK's Department of Health (DH) and University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust over the cancellation of a £900 million PFI project, reports SM sister publication FM World.

In March 2005 Triskelion, a consortium of Laing O'Rourke, John Laing and Serco, was awarded preferred bidder status on the Leicester Pathways PFI hospital project.

But in July 2007 the plug was pulled on the project because the DH no longer believed it represented value for taxpayers' money.

After more than two years of unsuccessful negotiations with the trust and the DH, Triskelion has decided to begin legal proceedings to recover its costs.

A spokesperson for the consortium said: "Triskelion believes that its claim is justified legally. Triskelion has been attempting to resolve this issue for more than two years and has regrettably been left with no other option than to seek redress through the courts."

It is understood that Triskelion will contend that the project was cancelled for reasons other than the value of its tender.

A DH spokesperson said that it would not be appropriate to comment on an ongoing legal case.

A spokesman for University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust said: "We are aware that the Triskelion consortium have indicated an intention to pursue proceedings, although no claim has yet been served.

"Any proceedings will be defended robustly by the trust. However, in light of such potential litigation it would not be appropriate for us to comment further at this stage."

This story first appeared in SM's sister magazine FM World. www.fm-world.co.uk

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