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Laurence Sheppard

A considered and commercial lawyer with his clients’ best interests at heart. A construction, projects and infrastructure lawyer with well over 20 year’s experience in both domestic and international fields.

What we say about Laurence

Laurence is a very experienced construction solicitor and has been a partner at several City law firms. Until recently he was the Group Head of Legal at a major main contractor. He is experienced in all aspects of non-contentious construction law, disputes resolution and procurement.  Laurence advises on, and drafts, building contracts and associated documentation including consultant appointments, collateral warranties, bonds, guarantees and letters of intent.  He is familiar with all major forms of construction contract: JCT, NEC, ICE, FIDIC, IChemE, IMechE.  Laurence is also Solicitor Advocate that advises on contentious issues including insolvency, arbitration, adjudication, expert determination or alternative dispute resolutions mechanisms such as mediation and conciliation.

Highlights

Laurence’s career highlights include:

Non Contentious experience

  • Acted for the SPV in connection with the Lancaster (£120m) and Nottingham Trent (£10m) Universities PPP projects.  This involved drafting the building contract, all the consultants’ appointments and ancillary construction documentation.
  • Laurence was involved in the South Buckinghamshire Hospital PFI project (third in the country to reach financial close – £120m) and also the Bromley, Orpington and Farnborough Hospital PFI project (£135m). Acted for the main contractor and FM contractor reviewing and drafting the project agreement, construction and FM contracts and the various construction related documents associated with any large PFI project.
  • Acted for Lambeth London Borough Council on the redevelopment of an existing college in the Borough.  This involved drafting and negotiating the agreement for lease, funding documents and a full suite of construction documents flowing downwards.  Those documents included the main contract, various consultant appointments, collateral warranties, a bond and a parent company guarantee. Laurence also was required to resolve a number of European procurement issues with the preferred bidder.
  • Advised The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead on a major street lighting PFI.  Laurence drafted the OJEU notice for this project and also acted as the lead lawyer on the delivery of the street lighting programme itself. This involved drafting the project agreement and all the associated construction documents.
  • Acted for the Department of Health ‘Partnerships for Health’ initiative, which aimed to enable, support and invest in local health economies by setting up of Local Improvement Finance Trusts (LIFT) to deliver improved facilities and services.  This work involved two major projects in Bristol and three in London. This involved drafting and negotiating the lease plus agreement and the construction contract with the main contractor and all the associated construction documents.
  • Acted for Network Rail in relation to the extension of the Manchester Metro-link. This involved drafting the project agreement and the construction contract with the main contractor and the construction related suite of documents.

 

Contentious experience

  • Acted for a national contractor on a £30m final account dispute concerning a bespoke construction contract for track laying on the Croydon Tramlink system.  This was a bespoke contract, and required an expert determination, with provisions for arbitration within 28 days if the parties were dissatisfied with expert’s decision.
  • Acted on a £20m final account dispute on the Brighton to Hove bypass.  This involved 10 separate arbitrations concerning issues such as ordered variations, the quality of the concrete finish and prevention by the employer.
  • Acted on a £20m dispute over unforeseen ground conditions in relation to the construction of diaphragm walls on the A406, North Circular Road.  There were further complications with regard to the quality of concrete supplied and in particular the mix of that concrete. The contract was in an ICE format and the matter was dealt with in arbitration.