Procure North West launches £2bn framework

Liverpool-based Procure North West, headed up by former Kier frameworks director Robbie Blackhurst, has started the bidding process for a £2bn, four-year construction framework covering Cumbria, Cheshire, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, and Merseyside.

The wide-ranging framework covers public sector bodies across the region, and is open to NHS bodies, emergency services, colleges, universities, schools, local authorities, housing associations, and registered charities.

Leisure providers, the Ministry of Defence, and other government departments will also be able to procure projects through the framework.

It is split across four main lots, with up to eight firms due to be named on each.

Lot one covers between £1m and £5m; lot two is £5m to £15m; lot three is £15m and £25m; and lot four is for projects worth more than £25m.

The framework, worth a potential £2bn in total, is expected to run until 2022.

The organisation issued a prior information notice this week, ahead of the full tender documents being released to the market on 19 March. Contractors will be selected on the framework by 29 May.

Blackhurst, who has also worked for Robertson, runs bid management and project consultancy firm Captivate.

“Public sector budget pressures and skills shortages are two of the biggest issues facing the construction industry right now,” he said.

“As well as helping to facilitate projects that will help shape our growing towns and cities, I felt it was important to be able to give something back to help protect the future of the industry in the region.

“The framework pushes the boundaries of how procurement can support public sector bodies to deliver their strategic targets and enable them to deliver projects that they may otherwise not be able to get off the ground.”

Other frameworks that recently came to market include the North West Construction Hub’s £1.5bn high-value framework, which covers projects worth £8m or more.

Tender documents were reissued earlier this week, after the bid process was terminated in early February due to supposed wording that could have left NWCH open to a legal challenge once the framework was awarded.

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