Decision details

Decision details

Decarbonisation Project; Decision Point C- Award of contract to Willmott Dixon and Consultants F&G/HoreLea to commence technical design and construction works for the decarbonisation programme

Decision Maker: Head of Corporate Strategy

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


Cabinet at its meeting on 16 June 2021 delegated authority to the Head of Corporate

Strategy in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Zero Carbon Oxford to enter

into a loan agreement with Low Carbon Hub on terms to be agreed by the Head of

Financial Services/Section 151 Officer; and the Councils Monitoring Officer.


To award a contract for the technical design and construction (RIBA stages 5 & 6/7) of the decarbonisation project to Willmott Dixon all for a consideration of £9,452,146 and extend the F&G and their subcontractor contract all for the consideration £793,113. Internal fees plus High Voltage (HV) costs all for £428,409.

The appointment will be initially covered by a Letter of Intent (LOI) followed by the signing of the JCT Design and Build Contract 2016 to cover all the works from preconstruction to handover (RIBA stages 1-7).

The LOI is used for the following reasons

1.    Allow the project to proceed by the 20th of September 2021 in order to meet the deadline of 31st March 2022

2.    Allow time to review the legal contract from both parties the Council and Contractor Willmott Dixon.

Allow time to finalise contract sum, signing and sealing of the JCT Design and Build 2016 Contract.

Reasons for the decision:

The reason is to appoint Willmott Dixon to carry out technical designs and construction work and Consultants F&G/Hoare Lea to advise on costs, project management, construction and design management (CDM) and handover of the decarbonised properties.

The decision to continue appointing F&G and Willmott Dixon to proceed with RIBA Stage 5&6 construction phase (procurement stage 2) is due to tight deadline of 31st March 2022, there is no time for another competitive tender as Council risk losing the funding if the deadline is missed. They have just completed RIBA stage 1-4 (stage 1 procurement) of the programme. Therefore, appointing them provides continuity, saves time, and they have also amassed a wealth of knowledge during the execution of the feasibility studies and early designs work

Alternative options considered:

There are two options;

Option 1)

-       Due to the tight time scales, stop the completion of RIBA stage 3 & 4 design.

-       Pay all cost for work carried out to date and any cancelation fees approximately £1.6 million


This option was rejected because it does not support the City Council’s new and fourth internal carbon management plan set to run from 2021/22 to 2029/30, in which the Council commits to reduce the underlying emissions and become Zero Carbon by 2030. Furthermore, Council have provisionally agreed with Salix a programme extension to March 2022 (awaiting Salix written approval, expected this month).

Option 2) - Recommended


-       To complete RIBA Stage 3/4/5/6 and handover

-       Proceed to Procurement stage 2 (Construction Stage) 


As Salix is supporting the Council’s application for an extension of time, option 2 is recommended because;

-       It enables construction work to be completed for Decarbonisation core and enabling works and make maximum use of the grant money available of ca£10.9m

The decision is in line with Council commitment of becoming zero carbon by 2030. The council does not have available funds itself of £10.9m to decarbonise its buildings in line with its aims to be zero carbon by 2030.

Signed off by senior officers:

Mish Tullar

Head of Corporate Strategy

Decision taken in consultation with:

·         Cllr Tom Hayes, Cabinet Member for Green Transport and Zero Carbon Oxford

·         Caroline Green, Chief Executive

·         Nigel Kennedy, Head of Financial Services

·         Susan Sale, Head of Law and Governance

Publication date: 15/09/2021

Date of decision: 15/09/2021

Effective from: 18/09/2021

Accompanying Documents: