Bechtel Limited v. High Speed Two Limited

Addleshaw Godard acted for High Speed Two in the claims brought by Bechtel Limited.

The judgment, which runs to 152 pages, dismissed all claims brought by an unsuccessful bidder, Bechtel Limited, in relation to HS2’s £1.3 billion procurement for its Construction Partner for Old Oak Common, one of the two major Southern Stations on the new high speed line. 

The judgment provides helpful analysis for authorities, utilities and bidders on a number of aspects of public procurement processes. The Court re-emphasised that authorities have a wide scope in the setting of the terms of their procurement processes.  

The decision also reinforces the risk bidders take if they choose to submit tenders seeking to qualify/amend fundamental terms of the contract to be let.  Authorities are not obliged to change the tendered contract, especially if that would change the risk profile of the contract (and thereby create a risk of challenge by other bidders if they did so).

The Addleshaw Godard team (instructed by the HS2 General Counsel, Nicole Geoghegan) was led by partner Bill Gilliam (Picture) and included legal director Ryan Geldart and associate Charlotte Parkinson, with support from Michael Rainey, Paul Rowley, Emily Wallam, Jaime Carr, Alexandra Robinson, Amelia Shaw, Ilona Bateson, Elliott Hill and Rosalind Davies. 

HS2’s Counsel team comprised Sarah Hannaford QC, Simon Taylor and Ben Graff of Keating Chambers. Bechtel Limited was represented by Hogan Lovells. 


Involved fees earner: Jaime Carr – Addleshaw Goddard; Ryan Geldart – Addleshaw Goddard; Bill Gilliam – Addleshaw Goddard; Charlotte Parkinson – Addleshaw Goddard; Michael Rainey – Addleshaw Goddard; Alexandra Robinson – Addleshaw Goddard; Paul Rowley – Addleshaw Goddard; Amelia Shaw – Addleshaw Goddard; Emily Wallam – Addleshaw Goddard;

Law Firms: Addleshaw Goddard;

Clients: HS2 Limited;

Author: Federica Tiefenthaler