News Archive

Acquisition of Mountainheath Services Ltd (

19 September 2008

Acquisition of Mountainheath Services Ltd ("MSL")

Acquisition of Mountainheath Services Ltd ("MSL")

RPS announces the acquisition of MSL, a provider of specialist laboratory services to industry in the UK and mainland Europe.

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MSL was established in 1995 and provides analytical services to the environmental service industry from its laboratory in Letchworth, Hertfordshire.
The acquisition of MSL complements RPS’s existing laboratory capabilities in the UK and the Netherlands. MSL specialises in the analysis of pesticide and persistent organic pollutants, an area of growing importance as these can cause significant harm both to humans and the natural environment. The three directors and MSL staff are remaining with RPS.

In the year ended 31 March 2008, MSL had revenues of £1.2 million and profit before tax, adjusted to reflect ongoing employment costs for the MSL directors, of £0.4 million. Net assets at 31 March 2008, adjusted for agreed pre-acquisition dividends settled prior to completion, were £0.4 million, including cash of £0.2 million.

RPS is acquiring the entire share capital of MSL, from the three directors, for a maximum total consideration of £1.9 million, payable in cash. Consideration paid at completion was £1.2 million. Subject to certain operational conditions being met, a further £0.35 million will be paid on each of the first and second anniversaries of the transaction.

Alan Hearne, Chief Executive of RPS, commented:

"RPS completed a number of transactions in the first half of 2008. The integration of those businesses is proceeding well. Our balance sheet remains strong and we have sufficient resources to continue our acquisition strategy. We have begun, therefore, exploring a range of new opportunities. The completion of the transaction with MSL is a useful step in the development of our specialist laboratory activities. Discussions with other businesses in all three segments of the Group are progressing positively."

19 September 2008

RPS is an international consultancy providing advice upon the development of natural resources, land and property, the management of the environment and the health and safety of people. We have offices in the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, North America, Eastern Europe, South East Asia and Australia and undertake projects in many other parts of the world. The Group is a constituent of both the FTSE 250 and FTSE 4 Good indices.

Biogas Pioneer Joins RPS

16 September 2008

Biogas Pioneer Joins RPS

Dr. Les Gornall, Anaerobic Digestion (AD) pioneer from Northern Ireland, and winner of the 2005 ‘UK Engineering Contractor of the Year’ award has been appointed as RPS' Technical Director of the AD and Decentralized Energy Team.
AD represents good business opportunities for RPS not just in terms of energy, but also across many disciplines. The production of a new Anaerobic Digester requires a range of services, from assessment of organic waste arisings, pre digestion treatments, planning, emissions analysis, health assessments, arrangements for payment of carbon credits, compost quality assessment, stakeholder and local community dialogue, and engineering work in design, building and operating. An urban design may include composting, city farms, high speed broadband integrated with district heating of residences and industry, traffic calming and urban landscaping with a major funding contribution from the sale of a benign form of decentralized energy.

Dr. Gornall explains "While there are many urgent reasons for building biogas and biomass plants to make energy and fertilizers from wastes, in the UK a combination of confusing and conflicting regulations, poor financial incentives and planning issues have prevented implementation. Contrast this with Germany, where this year 3,500 biogas plants are cleaning up the environment and producing energy in a biogas industry that now employs tens of thousands of people and Sweden where public transport is successfully run on biogas from landfill and agricultural wastes. Shortage of landfill sites, climate change and new technologies are now stimulating AD in the UK. The goal of RPS is to release the enormous potential of these green energy technologies in the country."

RPS is assisting private companies and councils to process their landfill and organic waste into electricity, hot water and fertilizers while assisting Government departments to remove the legislative barriers and implement financial incentives that will stimulate AD and other ‘green’ energy and waste processing technologies in the UK.
RPS Makes a Big Noise At Leeds Festival

11 September 2008

RPS Makes a Big Noise At Leeds Festival

A team of 7 acoustic consultants from the Brighton and Manchester offices were on hand over the August Bank Holiday to provide sound control and advice for the 10th Leeds Festival.
70,000 music fans came to Bramham Park to see headliners Metallica, Rage Against The Machine, The Killers and more than 180 other bands, comedians and cabaret acts on 6 stages. For those energetic enough to want more, there was music in smaller venues on the site until 6am.

RPS were measuring the music sound levels both on and off site during the festival to ensure that the licence conditions were not exceeded, as well as liaising with the promoter, local authority and sound engineers.

There were a total of 7 noise complaints from local residents over the weekend, none of which were considered to warrant any legal action for breaches of the licence conditions. Both Leeds City Council, the licensing authority, and Festival Republic, the promoter, pronounced themselves very pleased with this result.

RPS has worked as acoustic consultants at a number of major music events over the summer - including the Glastonbury and Latitude festivals - which were also great successes with complaints regarding noise received significantly reduced. The number of events at which RPS acts as acoustic consultants is expected to increase in 2009.

Thumbnail: Diego Baseggio
RPS Avoids Bunkers to Put Golf Club into the Swing of Things

05 September 2008

RPS Avoids Bunkers to Put Golf Club into the Swing of Things

The Cardiff office of RPS secured planning permission - subject to a Section 106 Agreement - for an 18-hole championship and 9-hole par 3 golf course, clubhouse including health facilities, sauna, swimming pool, gymnasium, golf school and academy, 80 golfing lodges, approximately 135 houses, a green keeper’s flat, associated infrastructure, car parking and landscaping for the Royal Fern Golf Club in Swansea. 
The site benefited from a very old, expired planning permission and a series of aged policy commitments. However, the application submitted in 2005 was recommended for refusal by the Officers of Swansea City Council but was approved by the planning commitee. The Welsh Assembly Government then “called in” the application for its own determination and dismissed the appeal even though the Inspector recommended that it should be allowed. Subsequently RPS secured a positive recommendation for the allocation from the UDP Inspector and the site is shortly to be allocated for the now approved use.

The proposal is intended to provide a high quality golf resort and academy complex in Swansea to meet the demands likely to be generated as a result of what will hopefully be a successful 2010 Ryder Cup at the Celtic Manor Resort, Newport. The residential component of the scheme is essential as enabling development and is to be implemented through a joint venture partnership between the golf club and Charles Church Homes Ltd.

The scheme has the backing of the Sports Council for Wales.

Thumbnail: Roger Kirby