The Cancellation of Bicester Accommodation Centre

The Cancellation of Bicester Accommodation Centre

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This NAO report examines the Government's decision in June 2005 to cancel plans for a new purpose-built accommodation centre at Bicester, which was to have been built as part of a pilot accommodation programme for people seeking asylum in the UK. This programme, announced in October 2001, was seen as a way of making the asylum process more efficient, by housing asylum seekers onsite during the whole application process from initial arrival through to decision and possible appeal. The decision was taken in light of significant local opposition to the centre which delayed the planning process, the success of other initiatives to speed up the processing of asylum applications and a fall in the number of people claiming asylum in the UK. By the end of March 2007, the Home Office had spent about Ap33 million on the accommodation project, of which Ap28 million related to Bicester. The NAO report makes a number of recommendations for departments planning similar projects in order to identify key risks to successful delivery and project management. These include the need for departments to identify in the business case the impact of a range of planning delays on cost and delivery for schemes that require planning permission using a range of scenarios; to ensure the necessary co-ordination of the process takes place at a sufficiently senior level to effect proper control; and to include only realisable benefits in cost benefit analyses.Initial thinking was that the a#39;core and cluster modela#39; would require 12 centres, rather than ten. For planning purposes, the Home Office still assumed it would need ten centres. 17 Ap1 .48 million for asylum casework staff and Ap1 .3 million for appeals caseworkers. 18 Ap4 million reduction in the National Asylum Support Service budget for the base cost of supporting these asylum seekers in dispersed accommodation and Ap0.72 million for National Asylum Support Service staff. 1 9 Theanbsp;...

Title:The Cancellation of Bicester Accommodation Centre
Author: Great Britain: National Audit Office
Publisher:The Stationery Office - 2007

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