Alison Heathcote is a construction lawyer who specialises in non-contentious building procurement matters. Her experience includes work for both the private and public sector organisations.
Alison has experience and expertise in drafting and amending building and engineering contracts, including all versions of the JCT suite of contracts and NEC and institutional forms of contract.
She also advises on the drafting and amendments of consultant’s appointments (industry standard and bespoke), warranties, bonds, guarantees, development and funding agreements, agreement for leases, novation agreements and ancillary project documentation.
Alison has previously spent five years working in the public sector for two different County Councils. Her experience there includes advising on public procurement procedures and issues such as state aid, internal governance, and the setting up and operation of framework agreements.
- Working as part of a team setting up 2 framework agreements for capital construction works and minor works and maintenance. This included drafting bespoke framework agreements and schedules of amendments to a range of standard form contracts within the JCT and NEC suites.
- Drafting a bespoke funding agreement between the Department for Transport and the County Council, in connection with the delivery by the County Council of the multi million pound project for the A50 growth corridor at Uttoxeter, on behalf of Highways England. Alison advised on the procurement of the works contract via the MHA Medium Schemes Framework.
- Advising on the operation of a County Council’s 30 year contract for the delivery of highways maintenance and infrastructure works including settling various call off contracts based on the NEC suite of contracts.
- Advising on the available courses of action in relation to defective works at a school which resulted in the school being closed and pupils being displaced for over 12 months. The contractual matrix was complex with added complications arising from the involvement of an external consultant and the failure to adhere to the procedural requirements of a framework agreement.
Alison can give legal advice to teams working at local authorities and has worked on multi-million pound projects. She can work with colleagues and advisers in areas such as property and planning to ensure that advice and solutions on different aspects of a project are co-ordinated and integrated.
- Advising a County Council on the construction documents for the development of a new Public Sector Hub. This included a letter of intent for preliminary site investigations, a pre-construction services agreement for a two-stage tender, and an enabling works contract and the main contract. This entailed working with colleagues in the Property and Planning Teams at the County Council and with solicitors representing partner authorities to ensure that all documents were co-ordinated and complementary. Alison also ensured that all parties’ interests were adequately protected – the project had a value of circa £15 million.
Alison has experience of the Health & Care sector, acting as the legal lead on a project to deliver dementia centres of excellence. She can advise on matters including competitive dialogue procedure, funding and finance options, and leading and co-ordinating a team dealing with many different legal aspects.
- Alison was the legal lead on a County Council’s project to procure a partner to deliver new dementia centres of excellence in the County with a 30 year service delivery agreement. This entailed sitting on the Project Board; advising on the competitive dialogue procedure; leading and co-ordinating the legal team dealing with the different legal aspects including public consultation, state aid, property development, asset transfer, governance, TUPE and delivery of care; drafting, negotiating and dovetailing the suite of contracts; and liaising with colleagues in the Council’s Finance Team in relation to funding options and the finance model.
Drinks, Hospitality & Leisure
Alison has helped a borough council with the outsourcing of its leisure and heritage facilities. This included managing the contracts due diligence process, working with the external project manager and co-ordinating a legal team.
- Advising a borough council in connection with the outsourcing of its leisure and heritage facilities including co-ordinating the legal team dealing with different aspects. This involved managing the contracts due diligence process and working with the external project manager.
Alison advised on the conversion of a PFI school to an academy.
- Advising on the conversion of a PFI school to academy status including drafting the necessary amendments to the bespoke PFI Project Agreement.
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