March 2023 UK Project Management Round Up


Infrastructure (nuclear, wind, new oil, rail),

BREXIT, Defence Procurement, AI,

Rewilding projects and dancing cranes


By Miles Shepherd

Executive Advisor & International Correspondent

Salisbury, England, UK


Well, here we are – more or less on the cusp of Spring.  Our weather is easing, flood waters receding, it’s a little warmer and hopeful, we are all a little more cheerful as we pull out of the dreariness of winter.  There is quite a lot of activity in the UK Project World and this report includes some reports on the Energy sector, comments on the Defence procurement programme and a reminder of the importance stakeholder engagement.  I’ll round of the report with some news on conservation projects but the topic that has dominated the news here remains the impact of AI, and in particular, ChatBOT.


Nuclear The current financial situation has focused consumer minds on energy and its ever-escalating cost so it comes as no surprise that the Government is seeking ways to reduce costs.  Their view is that nuclear is the way to go so the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt MP, is trying to speed up the planning process.

Sizewell C, Image: EDF

Regular readers will know the UK planning system has long been considered as unnecessarily complex and prone to introduce delay by excessive allowing determined objectors to hold up key projects on ideological grounds.  Hunt has ordered a major review to speed up major infrastructure project such as Sizewell C nuclear reactor which was approved in 2022 after a 7-year planning battle.  Offshore wind farms have also been repeatedly delayed by local objections.

Despite the many calls for more offshore wind farms, all big developments since 2017 have had to go to ministers for approval, in a process increasingly viewed as cumbersome.  In mid-February, an application to build a wind farm that could provide power to more than two million homes from the North Sea were delayed a further five months to allow ministers to gather more information before issuing a development consent order.

Hornsea Wind Farm. Image: Ørsted

All is not rosy, though, as it seems OIL has excluded onshore wind farms from classification as nationally significant infrastructure.  He was forced to signal a relaxation of onshore rules by a backbench rebellion, but projects will remain very hard to approve through a separate planning process.


To read entire report, click here

How to cite this report: Shepherd, M. (2023). Project Management Roundup from the UK, report, PM World Journal, Vol. XII, Issue II, February. Available online at https://pmworldjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/03/pmwj127-Mar2023-Shepherd-UK-project-management-roundup-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.  His consulting work has taken him to Japan, Taiwan, USA and Russia.  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 was, for seven years, 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 is currently Chairman of the British Standards Institute project management committee.  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/.