Welsh contractor takes over halted £135m Buckingham Group scheme

Welsh firm Andrew Scott has been appointed to finish one of collapsed contractor Buckingham Group’s remaining schemes.

Andrew Scott will finish a multistorey car park and commercial site in the centre of Swansea, after the project stalled following Buckingham’s descent into administration.

Buckingham had been delivering the Copr Bay scheme, a £135m redevelopment, which includes a 3,500-capacity arena, housing, a new hotel and two car parks. The £665m-turnover firm collapsed in September 2023 without finishing one of the two car parks and some retail space.

Willmott Dixon came in to assess what work was still needed before Andrew Scott was appointed this week to build the second car park and finish the rest of the job.

Andrew Scott hopes to complete the scheme this year, with client Swansea Council planning to open the car park by the end of 2024.

The council said in a statement that “it’s not envisaged there will be any extra costs to the authority or council taxpayers”.

Swansea council leader Rob Stewart said the local authority “acted quickly […] to protect our position” after Buckingham’s collapse.

“The completion of the car park, retail units and other finishing works will follow on from a project that’s already delivered Swansea Arena, the coastal park, the car park under the arena and the new bridge over Oystermouth Road,” he added.

The appointment of Andrew Scott follows progress on another former Buckingham job. Last week, Hillingdon Council took over “direct management” of a scheme to develop the Platinum Jubilee Leisure Centre (CGI pictured) in West Drayton, west London, which Buckingham was working on.

That scheme is set to cost at least £9.1m more than the initial estimate.

Buckingham was the biggest casualty in the construction sector since Carillion went under in 2018. It was the 30th biggest contractor by turnover in the UK, based on its latest accounts, for 2021/22, according to the CN100 ranking.

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