21 December 2007
Following recent factually inaccurate media reports, we would like to provide clarification regarding expenditure relating to Diamond’s construction and operational budgets.
Diamond’s Phase I construction concluded at the end of December 2006 and was delivered within the approved budget of £263.2m including contingency.
With regards to the running costs, Diamond Light Source Ltd. submitted its first estimates to the Shareholders (then CCLRC and The Wellcome Trust) in 2003. These forecast figures were provided to the shareholders in the context of the company’s rolling 5 year financial plan. Now in the first year of operation (2007/08), the company is delivering within the operational budget approved and funded by its shareholders of £29.9m (exc VAT) and in fact, allowing for inflation, our operational costs will probably be below the forecast figures given to shareholders in 2003.
For STFC clarification on its budget, visit
"As the major shareholder in Diamond Light Source Ltd, we would like to stress that Diamond has been built on time, on budget and to specifications. Recent mentions in the press of costs overruns in operational costs are inaccurate and relate to estimates made far before Diamond Light Source was created and the final scope agreed. The actual costs of operation have been known for a long time and have not changed. We will work with Diamond to identify options to share expertise and infrastructure across the Harwell Campus to reduce the financial pressures we are under."
Prof Keith Mason, Chief Executive of the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), which funds 86% of Diamond
"Diamond Light Source Ltd was allocated construction budgets for Phase 1 and Phase 2 that the company has delivered and continues to deliver on time, within budgets and to the highest specifications. The operation costs of this facility have been known for several years and we have agreed to pay our full share of it. "So far, the Wellcome Trust has been impressed by the smooth delivery of the facility and in no way are recent mentions of costs overrun in the media related to the sound management that the team at Diamond has worked hard to achieve."
Dr Mark Walport, Director of the Wellcome Trust, which provides the remainder of Diamond's funding.
Diamond Light Source is the UK's national synchrotron science facility, located at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire.
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