William Penn refurbishment dispute resolved

Updated: 28 January 2013

The long running dispute over the William Penn Leisure Centre refurbishment between the District Council, Atkins and Gee Construction Ltd has been resolved...

The long-running dispute over the William Penn Leisure Centre refurbishment between Three Rivers District Council, Atkins and Gee Construction Ltd has been resolved, TRDC’s Chief Executive, Steven Halls, announced on Thursday (24 January).

Agreement was reached last week at a two-day evaluative mediation facilitated by Sir Vivian Ramsey, a senior Judge in the Technology & Construction Court.  The successful mediation brings to an end the dispute and takes away the need for a trial in the Technology & Construction Court that had been set down to be heard in November 2013.

The agreement was subject to a confidentiality clause but Dr Halls was able to confirm that Three Rivers District Council was satisfied with the conclusion of the process, there had been no admission of liability and TRDC had been vindicated in its claim not to be at fault in any way for the project over-runs.

Steven Halls said:

“Through no fault of ours, this project cost nearly double its originally agreed price and, instead of taking a year, as planned and contracted, it took nearly three and half years, meaning that our young people missed eight terms of school swimming, and all of our local residents lost 286,000 attendances”.

“Our aims at mediation were to strive to resolve the matter at that stage and avoid an expensive trial;  to ensure we did not have to spend any further money than that already budgeted and to ensure we received some money back.  We succeeded in all three of those aims.  I now hope we can concentrate on future projects, rather than dealing with the past.”