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A Service Level Agreement with Norfolk County Council

Norfolk County Council


  • Project Management
  • Property Consultancy Services

"Norse Consulting remains resilient and agile as it continues to provide us with quality professional services, supporting us through societal, economic and climate change."

Simon HughesDirector of PropertyNorfolk County Council


07787 128717
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"Our long-standing partnership with Norfolk County Council provides the flexibility to respond to ever-changing national and local priorities, brings employment stability and security and keeps jobs and profits within the local community."

Project Summary

The renewable SLA with NCC is to provide a range of multi-disciplinary professional property services, including estate and asset management, property maintenance, design and energy.

The NCC estate includes some 1,493 sites and 3,287 buildings with a total asset value circa £547m[1] and comprises a large operational and non-operational portfolio of a wide variety of property types and interests including highways, schools, libraries, care homes, fire stations, residential, industrial, offices and retail premises. This also includes the county council’s rural estate and land with and without development potential.

Together we support the delivery of the NCC Strategic Property Asset Management Framework, which includes an ambitious programme of disposals, revenue savings and direct development of housing schemes.

Services provided include:

o Landlord and Tenant – the services we provide include the negotiation and granting of agreements, rent reviews and renewals, service charge assessment and dilapidations.

  • For a lease renewal of offices in Norwich we secured a 40% reduction in the passing rent
  • We successfully reduced a dilapidations’ claim for offices from £35k to £19k

o Planning – We undertake extensive work to promote NCC’s land bank and other assets in the development plan preparation process, both on its own and in conjunction with other landowners, including on a consortium basis. This work has unlocked value and delivered allocation and certainty, including with early planning consents, to allow for early development or disposal.

  • Acle – We secured the allocation of 5ha of land for housing with an early planning permission to deliver 140 dwellings
  • Hopton – Emerging allocation of three separate parcels of land for housing covering over 40ha with planning permission on 9ha to deliver 200 dwellings
  • Sprowston – As part of a consortium of landowners, securing collaboratively the allocation of land to deliver a mixed-use development including some 3,500 dwellings

o Compulsory Purchase – we work from an early stage with the NCC design team providing estimates, support through the Development Consent Order (DCO) application and examination process, land acquisition and settlement of compensation, (including Part 1 claims) – current schemes include Broadland Northway, Great Yarmouth Third River Crossing and Norwich Western Link.

o Valuations – we provide both Red Book and non-Red Book valuation and valuation advice to NCC and its Services including Social Services, Children’s Services, Highways, Economic Development, Fire and Rescue Service, Cultural Services etc. We also answer auditor’s queries and provide additional information or explanation to them as required. This service includes a five-year rolling programme of circa 200 asset valuations per annum and valuations for acquisition and disposal for both freehold and leasehold interests

o Development Appraisals and Feasibility Assessments – we regularly undertake residential development appraisals as local authorities seek to promote housing. We are also experienced in corporate and social housing stock programmes across the country.

o Rating Services – a comprehensive service is provided including valuations, bill checking, appeals and representation at valuation tribunal. These have achieved savings of £2.8m since 2018/19.

o Land Surveying – our land survey team undertake measured surveys of land and buildings including laser scanning. They produce accurate detailed plans for transactions and for boundary issues, including CAA licenced drone pilots. We also provide high level photogrammetry and thermal imaging services, including roof surveys. Find out more about our land surveying work in our Cliff Erosion Monitoring Survey case study.

o Acquisitions and Disposals – we undertake freehold acquisitions as well as acquisitions by agreement from user rights to leases.

o Strategic Asset Management – includes carrying out regular inspections, reviews and maintaining online databases. Property reviews are undertaken as part of an on-going programme to identify under-utilised and surplus property for disposal to generate capital receipts to support the county council’s strategic and corporate objectives.

o Property Data – regular, consistent and accurate property data and information is managed and reported to facilitate the broad nature of services delivered and ensure estate management actions (approximately 120 per annum) and compliance requirements are met. This information is also used to inform and support the delivery of the NCC’s Strategic Property Asset Management Framework.

Project Overview

Norse Consulting through NPS Property Consultants Limited has an annual renewable Service Level Agreement (SLA) with Norfolk County Council (NCC) providing services including estate and asset management, property maintenance, design and energy. The SLA has been in place (in evolving iterations) since 1994 and is renewed regularly. Most recently, NCC have agreed to extend for further three years from 2023 to 2026.

Project Impact

We recognise the benefit of a close working relationship with the client and at Norse Consulting we use this to provide ongoing advice and support throughout the year.

This service enables our client to remain informed about industry changes and developments. It includes advice on changes in legislation, CIPFA guidance, IFRS and RICS regulations, and planning policies.

With the range of professional property services and expertise NPS provides, we are able to assist our clients in the seamless delivery of their property ambitions. This collective experience also ensures that Norse Consulting has the capacity and resilience across a broad range of estate management activities which is helpful when supporting organisations across the country. Norse Consulting can mix and match its capacity and expertise to meet specific client or project needs.

Norse Consulting has successfully been able to provide a consistent service, backed by a core of long-standing employees with a wealth of expertise and thorough knowledge of the NCC estate.

It shares its knowledge and experience gained with colleagues across the Norse Consulting Group and provides and receives support with other offices to give resilience and flexible resources to meet demands of NCC.

Norse Consulting also trades externally which helps retain the 100 staff in employment.

As a public sector owned organisation, we embrace social value and operate in a way that maximises it. Values are generated from our everyday activities by ensuring social, economic and environmental benefits are embedded in our service delivery.

Our commitment is through our group-wide CSR Strategy. The Norse Way is aligned to the principles, obligations and aspirations of the Social Value Act 2012 and more latterly PPN 06/20 and PPN 06/21 which details how we must incorporate carbon reduction into the execution of our projects. Much seen through the work we do with NCC.

We stimulate the local economy and improve people’s lives by considering where social value benefit can be delivered. We are reinvesting funds into communities to create jobs, apprenticeships, and generate opportunities; evidenced through:

  • Project delivery: for every £1 we receive in fees; we generate double that in social benefits and value to those communities.
  • 2020/21: 150 apprentices are employed across our group working in the care (62), FM (53) and consultancy services (35) field
  • 45% of our spend is through local SMEs
  • Continued members of Norfolk ProHelp. An organisation which partners businesses with charities to provide fee professional advice and support to the voluntary and not-for-profit sector.

With our consistent delivery for Norfolk County Council, Norse Consulting has an extensive knowledge base of the requirements of education capital projects enabling projects to be delivered every year. We are now also able to help develop the strategy for delivering Net Zero carbon schools in Norfolk.

The close relationship between Norse Consulting and Norfolk County Council enables us to help deliver the property needs of the local authority’s strategic objectives.

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