When Carillion started building the hospital under a private finance initiative contract in 2014, it was supposed to be finished by March 2017.
When Carillion went into liquidation in January 2018, problems at the Liverpool hospital were cited as a contributing factor. There were issues with asbestos in the ground, with wind affecting the use of cranes and structural issues with a number of beams. A revised completion date of February 2018 was provided by Carillion, but in November 2017 it told the Trust that it could not meet this date. A new completion date had not been provided prior to Carillion’s collapse.
When Laing O’Rourke took over in October 2018 a new completion date of 2020 was given. Laing O’Rourke was already building the Clatterbridge Cancer Centre next door so was well placed to step in.
However, Liverpool City Council revealed on Twitter that Steve Warburton, chief executive of the hospital, had updated the council on the delays to the new Royal. “He says the work to complete it will cost £300m and they are likely to be at the existing hospital for the next three winters, opening in 2022,” the council said.
The extra £300m cost is in addition to the £285m already spent. The original budget was £335m.
Issues to emerge since the departure of Carillion include the need to replace cladding, since Carillion had put up an aluminium composite material (ACM) cladding system, which since the Grenfell Tower fire is now known not to be in breach of building regulations.