15th February 2018

Knowledge Type

Case study Lessons learned report


, Network Rail Ltd

Major Project

Thameslink Programme


Amelia Woodley

Of Interest To

Consultants Contractors Leadership teams Operators Private sector clients Public sector clients

Best practice and lessons learned from navigating the UK’s planning system.


Any major infrastructure programme will require a plethora of planning permissions and consents. These can range from local authority planning permission, development consent orders to a full Transport and Works Act Order. Some projects will require additional consents from bodies such as Historic England, Natural England and relevant highway authorities. Each of these is a time consuming process and given the level of stakeholder consultation it can be difficult to predict, which creates a significant risk to delivery dates. The risk of delay to programme also increases when objections are raised by members of the public and or national and local organisations as these can have a significant impact on the consultation process.

The Hendy review highlighted the importance of planning consents in delivering huge infrastructure programme of crucial economic importance. On the Thameslink Programme an expert in house Consents team was embedded at programme and project level providing expert guidance and support in managing and delivering consents thus enabling TLP to keep to time and cost. The consenting process was also embedded in TLP’s ISO14001 Environmental Management System and GRIP thus ensuring consents were considered at all stages of the project.