Boss of Jersey firm defends Perelle sea wall appointment

COMPETITION is healthy, the Jersey-based firm controversially selected to repair the Perelle sea wall has said.

Jersey-based contractor Brenwal Ltd completing the repairs on Perelle sea wall. The company’s owner, Pat Walker, has defended the decision to appoint his business for the work after Guernsey building firms were outraged that the £500,000 contract was awarded to an off-island company. (Picture by Steve Sarre, 1333347)
Jersey-based contractor Brenwal Ltd completing the repairs on Perelle sea wall. The company’s owner, Pat Walker, has defended the decision to appoint his business for the work after Guernsey building firms were outraged that the £500,000 contract was awarded to an off-island company. (Picture by Steve Sarre, 1333347)

COMPETITION is healthy, the Jersey-based firm controversially selected to repair the Perelle sea wall has said.

Brenwal Ltd owner Pat Walker defended the civil engineering contractor’s appointment for the project, which it has now completed three weeks ahead of schedule.

Guernsey building firms were outraged that the £500,000 contract was awarded to an off-island company – especially after it emerged that local firm Geomarine had offered to do the work for £55,000 less.

But Mr Walker said he would have expected local companies to be ‘significantly’ cheaper as they did not have the added expense of moving employees and equipment to the island.

Comments for: "Boss of Jersey firm defends Perelle sea wall appointment"

Rustylink

It is unlikely that using off-island competitors always involves bad or undesirable choices.

If 'local' companies don't use their advantages to make the best offers (all extrinsic factors taken ito account), they must expect 'foreign' competitors to win contracts.

Will

Doesn't it come down to the fact that people in guernsey seem to believe they should be paid more then anyone else, I wonder how much the jersey company would have charged if they didn't have the added expense of moving everything to Guernsey. I'm sure it would have been a lot less then a Guernsey company would have charged

Wall Watcher

Perhaps local firms might have been more concerned with health and safety. I noticed diggers on the beach rolling enormous granite boulders about while the public still had free access.

guern abroad

Was it not so much price in this case but the Guernsey firms were unable to schedule the work in quickly enough which impacted their tender success.

Still a Jersey firm (assuming that they used Jersey based staff and not short term labour) was better then proper overseas.

Johno

Rustylink

What will your children do when they leave school and maybe want to learn a trade? Aahhh no local companies left, some people are very shortsighted I'm afraid.

Jonathan

I understand your comment but it is not a reason for charging/quoting too much.

I'm afraid that Guernsey does have a bit of a reputation for quoting/charging a lot for some jobs, and also for the lax timescale of completion. I know of an electrician in Southern England who recently completed a job in Guernsey because he quoted competitively and got on with the job quickly.

Two sides to every story I'm sure but...

Johno

Jonathan

The alternative quote was £55,000 cheaper from a Guernsey company! So I don't quite know what you mean?

As I have said many times before, it is not difficult to understand why local companies are more expensive, mortgages here are going to be at least twice that (and more) of the UK. If we could purchase houses for £100k then I'm sure EVERYTHiNG would cost less!

You are right when you say there are two sides to every story I would not suggest that there are not a few rogue tradesmen out there, as there are everywhere.

I have seen some appalling work by off island tradesmen and indeed have had to put some of it right!

On another point is it not strange how it is always local tradesmen who get it in the neck, but accountants, advocates etc never get a mention!

markB

You may have said it many times, But they are a Jersey Company not UK, and Jersey's house prices are very similar to ours.

Plus the local company weren't sure when they could fit the repair work in, but suddenly changed there minds when they didn't get the contract

Yawn

Johnno,

I think the main reason for Brenwal for winning the bid was not because of the price but the time frame involved (as indicated in a previous press story).

Geomarine knew the time frames involved but couldn’t do the work when the States of Guernsey wanted it to happen. Geomarine could only do this more in the winter months hence the reason SOG chose Brenwal.

If SOG had of waited and the wall got worse in the next storm, which could of caused extensive flooding etc, I am sure you would of been first to berate the States for waiting and costing us all a lot more money because they waited longer for a local company to start the work.

In this case I think the SOG is fully vindicated in their decision.

Johno

yawn

The big problem here was the SPS taking months to get the tender documents out!

mash

Jonathan

At least one local firm quoted £50,000 less

The Wall was down for a long time why were quotes asked for sooner

All money spent on outside labour is a kick in the teeth for local workers

Island Wide Voting

Is the Guernsey habit of quoting 10-20% more if it's a States job still going strong?

Jon

Everybody always complains about the price of tradesmen, but it's actually a very skilled job - working with your hands to create the finished product. I'd happily pay a good carpenter, plumber, electrician good money.

If you're not very good word soon gets around over here.

Johno

IWV

Not sure where you get that info from (maybe too much time in the sun :)

How do you think States work is priced at 10-20% higher when every man and his dog gets to quote for works these days, it's called competitive tendering!

Oh, and you also have to wait about 3-4 months to get paid these days beause of the cockup that is SAPS

markB

Johno - I think you'll find its called "Not what you know, but who you know" whether it happens know I don't know, but adding 10 -20% was the norm for States jobs a few years ago.

Same as supplying granite for harbours, if you know what I mean.

Johno

markB

Yes and the 55k we could and should have saved could have gone towards the Apprenticeship scheme which our beloved SOG has decided to lop 52k off!

markB

I agree, but the said local company couldn't do the job when the States wanted it done.

so they handed it to the company that could.

OzyChris

Word I heard was that Geomarine offered the same time scale as Brenwal, and when the states used the time difference as the reason to pay a Jersey firm £55 more was the first the local team had heard of the supposed delay til August. A bit like the Lagon contract I smell something not quite transperent about this deal.

Metric Anvil

Your sources are letting you down mate!

Still I suppose the ability to smell differing levels of transparency is some consolation :-)

Johno

I have heard the same thing from a reliable source.

The. SPS tendering system is currently not fit for purpose for an island of 60,000. The system is imported from the UK mainly by imported civil servants.

I don't care what Brenwall says, they are only here because they are getting out tendered at home by outside contractors from the UK, if we are not careful we will be in the same mess that the Crapauds are!

In the know

I'm left wondering about just how many of these Jersey workers have impregnated our local girls? Not only have they taken much needed funds out of our shrinking economy some have probably left a lasting legacy for us to pick up on their behalf as well.

When I drove past, on a couple of occasions, I was met with the sight of a cackle of want-to-be benefit beauties. Dressed to the nines in mini skirts and looking their very best to lure unsuspecting workers into enabling them to get their foot on the first wrung of the Social Security ladder and thus guarantee an easy work-free lifestyle.