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NPS South West – a joint venture between Devon County Council and Norse Consulting

Devon County Council


  • Project Management
  • Property Consultancy Services
  • Refurbishment

"NPS South West is a mature partnership, now in its 15th year of trading. We have an intelligent client that values trust and collaboration; this is the bedrock of the Norse Consulting’s strategic relationship with DCC and the reason why our partnership continues to deliver value for Devon’s communities."


Al Robinson

07827 929513
View Biography

"As the key client portfolio holder, I develop lasting partnerships, through bespoke solutions, with a strong focus on creating sustainable value."

Project Summary

NPS South West was set up in 2007 under a 15-year joint venture (JV) contract. At the time, Devon County Council (DCC) had a large property team and was looking to transform the delivery of this service through a strategic partnership.

Since then, the business has seen the academisation of many Devon schools. It has retained the majority of tenant farms and rationalised a significant portion of its strategic assets to generate capital receipts. It is now in the process of transferring to a combined commercial and professional services operating model, built around a total facilities management (TFM) core service.

Successes include The Node (North Devon Enterprise Centre) project, with a value of £6.95 million, and comprising site infrastructure works to bring forward the new proposed business park in North Devon. NPS South West also led the design of the £3.4 million Pool Innovation Centre (PIC2) in Redruth, which is part of the Cornwall Workspace Capacity Programme (CWCP) to create high quality workspace for micro businesses and SMEs.

Other notable projects include the creation of Exeter University’s innovative Vibration Simulation (VSim) Building, which provides a VSimulator that can recreate any environment physically or virtually, immersing up to nine research volunteers in a simultaneous experience. This was shortlisted for three Constructing Excellence South West (CESW) Awards in 2021.

Project Overview

NPS South West is based in Exeter and Plymouth and provides building consultancy services throughout the West Country. With a turnover of £5.5 million, it has helped significantly reduce the cost of maintaining and developing Devon County Council’s (DCC) property portfolio, while also consistently generating much-needed revenue.

Project Impact

NPS South West generates approximately £5 million gross value added (GVA) annually for Devon. It has been able to significantly reduce costs for DCC while consistently generating revenue for the council in the form of volume discount.

It shares experience gained elsewhere in Norse Consulting and provides resilience in the form of mutually supporting offices that draws on wider resources when required.

The JV trades externally and supports the employment of 65 staff, helping to retain jobs. The volume discount it achieves also supports the employment of unfunded roles within DCC.

It has been involved in the delivery of the council’s net zero strategy, helping it to win £10 million of Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme funding, by identifying the highest carbon emitting buildings, conducting feasibility studies in a short period of time (against funding criteria), and then helping write the bids with technical calculations and modelling.

It has also seen success in the reduction of carbon emissions both within the business (as part of its own commitment to becoming carbon neutral) and in the design of DCC’s buildings.

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