Sizewell C will be one of the largest and most complex infrastructure projects to be delivered in the UK. A nuclear power station proposed to be located on the Suffolk coast, the project has recently concluded its DCO Examination. The application is predominantly for a Nuclear Power Station to be built in Suffolk, adjacent to the existing Sizewell B Station along with a number of associated infrastructure developments, including: an accommodation campus, significant road and rail improvements, park & ride sites, a freight site and several ecological mitigation / compensation areas.

Ardent support the project through two of our Directorates; Land Referencing and the Consents Management Consultancy.

Land Referencing:

Ardent have been instructed to conduct the land referencing process, producing the Land Plans and Book of Reference for the project since 2018. Ardent have also made contributions to the production of the Statement of Reasons and Consultation Report.

The DCO Application was submitted in May 2020, with Ardent continuing to support the Sizewell Co Land team with a number of changes to the application submitted to the Planning Inspectorate in January 2021, and further consultation periods on these changes. Throughout Examination, Ardent continued to support the project by undertaking changes to documents at multiple deadlines, processing further change requests in our deliverables and supporting the noticing requirements for the Issue Specific and Compulsory Acquisition hearings.

Ardent have also negotiated survey licences to allow access to land to undertake non-intrusive and intrusive surveys, undertaken landowner engagement, coordinated surveys between the EDF land team and contractors undertaking the work, and produced a property cost estimate for all of the scheme, including the road and rail led strategies.

Consents Management Consultancy:

The CMC team was appointed in 2020 by Laing O;Rourke, as the sole interface between the Civil Works Alliance and the EDF/Sizewell C Co, managing the technical dialogue and decision making between the engineering and construction delivery teams, and the clients’ DCO team.

CMC has coordinated and led the civil works programme in its preparation and support of the DCO examination, balancing the requirement between design development and robust defence of the application. CMC has fostered a project culture of collaboration and integration between a vast inter-disciplinary team to ensure a fully coordinated response to various challenges posed by the DCO consenting process. This role has included:

  • Answering the most pre-examination questions ever raised in a DCO
  • Coordination of a rapid response team of civils, marine, rail, operations and logistics leads with associated ‘speed’ governance
  • Strategic analysis of Examination hearings upon future compliance and commitment requirements for construction

There is now a 6 months period until a decision is made by the Secretary of State to grant consent for the project.