New chief executive starts on restoration and renewal of palace of Westminster

 

Sarah Johnson started work this week as the Chief Executive of the shadow Sponsor Body, the organisation to oversee the restoration and renewal of the Palace of Westminster.

Sarah has spent the majority of her career working in senior roles in major infrastructure projects, including Crossrail and HS2.

The Palace of Westminster Restoration and Renewal Programme has been established to tackle the significant work that needs to be done to protect the heritage of the Palace of Westminster and ensure it can continue to serve as home to the UK Parliament in the 21st century and beyond.

In 2018 the shadow Sponsor Body was established, to set the scope, budget and timescale of the Restoration and Renewal Programme, and oversee a Delivery Authority with the technical expertise to commission and execute the work. Sarah Johnson will head up the executive team which, together with a Sponsor Board, will oversee the works.

Parliament this week passed The Parliamentary Buildings (Restoration and Renewal) Act 2019 which sets out in law how the work will be carried out under this two-tier governance system. The legislation provides for a six-month transition period, with the governing bodies being set up in the Spring of 2020.

The structure is similar to the 2012 London Olympics and other successful infrastructure projects.

Sarah Johnson said of her appointment:

“Working on the Restoration and Renewal Programme is a huge honour for me, as it offers the opportunity to help protect one of the most iconic and best-known buildings in the world.

“The Sponsor Body’s task is immense – to transform the Palace of Westminster into a home fit for the future for our Parliament. I’m looking forward to getting down to business and am excited by the challenges ahead.”