Battersea Power Station scaffolders awarded extra £3m

A court has ordered the client involved in the Battersea Power Station revamp to pay a subcontractor £3.2m.

The subcontractor, QFS Scaffolding Ltd, worked on the second phase of the bumper development project. The phase was completed in January 2022, but costs had ballooned on the project.

Initially, QFS signed a contract worth £6.2m, but that contract value jumped to more than £30m by the time of completion, according to a document filed to the Technology and Construction Court.

The court has now confirmed that QFS must be paid the £3.2m that was ordered by an adjudicator appointed following the end of phase two.

The client and contractor on the project, Battersea Project Phase 2 Development Company Ltd (BPS), put forward a valuation on the work, but QFS disputed the valuation.

As well as being the client on the project, BPS was also the contractor, which arbitrator  Alexander Nissen KC noted was a “curious feature” of the job. But he added that it was not an important consideration in the legal case.

BPS initially valued QFS’s work at £30.6m plus VAT, which fell very short of the £71.6m demanded by QFS. BPS then increased its valuation to £37.3m including VAT, in the form of a “final payment notice”.

The dispute hinged on whether an adjudicator had the right to change the value of QFS’s work. BPS argued that QFS did not refer the disagreement over the value of the final payment to an adjudicator in time, meaning the value of the contract could not change.

However, the court ruled that the adjudicator had the right to change the value of the contract, despite a final payment notice being issued.

In 2022, Gareth Lewis, chief executive of Mace – which was construction manager on the project, said the job was “one of the most complex” he had ever worked on.

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