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Damages of £54m demanded as EfW performance questioned

A Welsh Council has issued a £54 million writ against two subsidiaries of the Currie & Brown Group responsible for a due diligence report for investors on the Crymlyn Burrows materials recovery and energy centre (pictured).

The money represents damages which, according to Neath Port Talbot Council corporate director Will Watson, were a result of the energy from waste facility not performing to its contractual performance targets.

The £32 million plant, near Neath, opened in 2002 but was temporarily closed for environmental breaches in 2003 and later damaged by fire.

The two companies, Currie & Brown Project Management and Currie & Brown Consulting Limited, are now dormant but the council is pursuing the group for damages.

Council head of the legal department Dave Michael said: The matter is being dealt with by external solicitors. The writ does concern duties of care by Currie & Brown in relation to the design and construction of the Crymlyn Burrows recovery plant near Neath.

Currie & Brown Group company legal adviser Julian Garrison said: I cant really comment as everything is in the hands of our lawyers.

A trial timetable has been set for April and May 2009.

The council will continue to run the plant while the case continues and Watson said it has made some modifications over the last few years and continues to improve the facilitys performance.

He also said original targets for landfill divergence and other facility related targets have all failed and so the council is nowhere near its targets.

He said that because of this longer term decisions about the plant will have to be made over the next few years.

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