It is expected that the project will offer a step change in successfully delivering custody services at new facilities which are conveniently placed and fit for purpose to meet the needs of modern policing and legislation. The Justice Support Services consortium, a joint venture between Bank of Scotland (now Lloyds Banking Group) (42.5%), Kier Project Investments (42.5%) and Reliance (15%), will now deliver the scheme and have arranged senior debt funding with Lloyds Banking Group, RBS and Helaba banks.
The capital value of the six facilities is approximately £60 million.
Service commencement at the first facility in Aylsham, Norfolk, is due to start at the end of February 2011, with the other sites to follow in Wymondham, Great Yarmouth, Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds and King’s Lynn. Kier will be the building contractor and Reliance will deliver the services from the operational facilities.
Pinsent Masons’ deep sector knowledge and effective cross-practice working proved essential to the deal, with a mixed team of experts from infrastructure, property, banking and construction teams all involved. Pinsent Masons advised the authorities on the entire procurement including joint working arrangements between the two police authorities and also site acquisitions to support the scheme.
The key team members working on this project to bring it to financial close were: John Bruce, Gemma Helliwell, Nic Berry, Kevin Boa, Adam Carney, Graeme Walton, Michael Kidd and Jo Ryan. John Bruce led the team day to day.
Neil Tindall, lead partner for the Two Counties project at Pinsent Masons, commented: "We are seeing an increased level of activity in the police PFI projects sector. We understand that the Home Office still encourages police authorities to identify opportunities for improved service delivery and to submit viable business cases to secure PFI credit funding. Our expertise in procuring schemes both in this sector and across major infrastructure projects through public private partnerships means that we can bring an unrivalled understanding of the commercial imperatives as well as first class legal skills".
This project is just the latest in a line of successful financial closes for Pinsent Masons in the police sector. These have included PFI schemes acting for the Metropolitan Police Authority and the Cheshire Police Authority. Lately the firm has been appointed to the West Yorkshire Police Authority police PFI project for new divisional headquarters/custody facilities in Leeds and Wakefield and a new training centre.
Other advisors for the police authorities include: Mott MacDonald (technical), KPMG (financial) and Aon (insurance).