July 2019 UK Project Management Round Up

Good news, Not so good news, BREXIT and APM Projecting the Future



By Miles Shepherd

Executive Advisor & International Correspondent

Salisbury, England, UK




This month is the end of the sensible reporting season in UK as Members of Parliament prepare to go on their extended summer holiday and social events begin to dominate the Press.  As some readers may have noticed, we are still some way off from closing the BREXIT project although one phase is drawing to a painful close as the Conservative and Unionist Party elect a new leader.  While the political gyrations are of little interest, it has significance for the project world so a few words on this topic follow.  We have also seen a major expansion of a key transport programme and there are further developments in this sector so these, too, appear below.


First the good news as far as transport projects are concerned.  This one is linked to sustainability and so falls into the Good News category.  As an animal loving nation, Britons go to some trouble to preserve various creatures, especially when they come up against motor transport.  Thus we have roadside signs warning drivers to be alert for various creatures, starting at the higher developed end with the elderly and children but covering livestock, deer, ducks and toads.  Indeed, toads seem especially close to people and I have encountered squads of concerned citizens late at night ushering large numbers of the beasts across roads during their breeding season.  However, some other creatures have been neglected, and some hint this amounts to discrimination.

Image: CBCK-Christine iStockphoto.com

So it is with some enthusiasm that I can confirm that hedgehogs will now be brought into the warm conservation embrace of highway planners.  The problem is serious as it has been estimated that about 100,000 hedgehogs die on British roads annually.  Efforts to teach hedgehogs better road sense have been notable for their lack of success so alternative methods have been adopted, a sign of taking on board lessons learned, good project management practice.  The new road signs have been designed and will be posted on strategic blackspots and so prevent hedgehog casualties.  Those disappoint d by the lack of response from hedgehogs to earlier schemes are skeptical about the hedgehog response but the Department for Transport is confident that the scheme will be successful.  Apparently they think the signs will alert drivers who may avoid contributing to the carnage and also help prevent crashes as drivers and motorcyclists swerve to avoid hedgehogs.

Other good news is the launch of the latest set of plans to develop London’s Heathrow airport.  Long discussed, the Coalition Government in UK set up a Commission to assess options for a new runway.  This ran into heavy criticism over location, pollution and costs but eventually a decision was reached in Parliament.  This is a minor miracle as Parliament is renowned for avoiding decision making, a fact reported as long ago as 1882 when Gilbert and Sullivan made reference to this reluctance in their comic opera Iolanthe.


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How to cite this report: Shepherd, M. (2019).  July 2019 UK Project Management Roundup, PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue VI, July.  Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/pmwj83-Jul2019-Shepherd-UK-Regional-Report.pdf



About the Author

Miles Shepherd

Salisbury, UK




Miles Shepherd is an executive editorial advisor and international correspondent for PM World Journal in the United Kingdom. He is also managing director for MS Projects Ltd, a consulting company supporting various UK and overseas Government agencies, nuclear industry organisations and other businesses.  Miles has over 30 years’ experience on a variety of projects in UK, Eastern Europe and Russia.  His PM experience includes defence, major IT projects, decommissioning of nuclear reactors, nuclear security, rail and business projects for the UK Government and EU.   Past Chair and Fellow of the Association for Project Management (APM), Miles is also past president and chair and a Fellow of the International Project Management Association (IPMA).  He is currently a Director for PMI’s Global Accreditation Centre and is immediate past Chair of the ISO committee developing new international standards for Project Management and for Program/Portfolio Management.  He was involved in setting up APM’s team developing guidelines for project management oversight and governance.  Miles is based in Salisbury, England and can be contacted at miles.shepherd@msp-ltd.co.uk.

To view other works by Miles Shepherd, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/miles-shepherd/.