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RG Falla moves into 'small works'

RG Falla moves into 'small works'

Sunday 11 December 2022

RG Falla moves into 'small works'

Sunday 11 December 2022

With the news this week that RG Falla has been dropped as the contractor for the redevelopment of the new post-16 campus at Les Ozouets, we take a look at the history - and current standing - of one of Guernsey's "premier building contractors".

RG Falla was launched in 1956 by the father of long-standing Chief Executive of the company Stuart Falla.

He has retired from the firm and is believed to have had no involvement with the company or any of its subsidiaries in recent times.

He had worked for the family business for 41 years before retiring at the age of 65. He also retired as Chairman of the Garenne Group in 2016.

Mr Falla had founded the Garenne Group in 1984.

It grew to include RG Falla in Guernsey along with AFM, Rabeys, Geomarine and others, along with Camerons, Rabeys and AFM in Jersey.

In August of this year, the Garenne Group announced a restructuring which included various changes to its business model.


Pictured: The Garenne Group announced a restructuring of its model earlier this year.

At the time it was said that the 13 Garenne Group companies would "continue to trade as usual with no changes to senior personnel, the headquarters or business locations".

The restructuring was said to have included "management buyouts" and Express understands that this has included the sale of Camerons, Geomarine and other smaller entities.

The restructuring was said to centre around a move towards an investment-based model aimed at reducing group executive involvement while placing ownership directly into the hands of the senior directors of many of its trading companies.

Negotiations were underway at the time the announcement was made in August 2022.

Although Stuart Falla had retired from the Garenne Group and RG Falla prior to the restructuring, he was quoted in a press release issued in August. 

“This restructuring is another key milestone in our 39-year history and will give the directors of these companies a fantastic opportunity to grow and develop the markets within which they operate,” said Mr Falla.

“Each company is market-leading and goes into the future with a very solid foundation for growth. So it’s an ideal time to make these changes to ensure the sustained success of the organisations, leaving them in the hands of those people who have helped to build them.

“The commitment to Garenne’s values will remain as strong as ever, and we will remain supportive of our respective communities and local charities.”


Pictured: Stuart Falla ran RG Falla for more than 40 years and he founded and Chaired the Garenne Group for more than 30 years before retiring.

The Guernsey Registry shows that RG Falla Limited, Garenne Construction Group Ltd, Geomarine Ltd and others all previously under the Garenne Group are currently operating as "normal".

It also shows that a new firm - called RG Falla Construction Ltd - was established in August of this year.

It was registered on 2 August 2022, and its registered address is Garenne House, Garenne Park, St Sampson.

Another new firm - Falla Small Works Ltd - was established just this month.

It was registered on 2 December 2022, and its registered address is also Garenne House, Garenne Park, St Sampson.

Both of the newly registered firms, and the original RG Falla Ltd which was registered in 1956, are all listed as being involved in the "construction of buildings, roads, utility projects". 


Pictured: ESC this week announced it had dropped RG Falla as its contractor for the build of the new Post-16 campus at Les Ozouets. 

RG Falla has been synonymous with 'big' building projects rather than 'small works' in the past.

Not withstanding Fallagate where the then-Deputy Stuart Falla was caught up in controversy over his firm's tender for the rebuild of the PEH, it has been contracted by the States for multiple capital building projects over the decades.

The Guernsey Grammar School in the early 1980s, Sir Charles Frossard House in the same decade, and the modern Les Beaucamps High School were all built by RG Falla staff. 

Private projects such as the Credit Suisse building, Marina View, and the Slaughterhouse redevelopment have all been notable builds completed by RG Falla in recent years. 

This experience in seeing large capital projects through to completion meant the decision by the States ESC committee to drop RG Falla was a surprise to many this week.

ESC said that the company had tried "unilaterally to alter material contract terms agreed in the tender process". The Committee's President, Deputy Andrea Dudley-Owen, said: "The States have been forced into taking this decisive action to ensure we fully uphold our responsibilities to taxpayers around safeguarding the public purse."

In response, RG Falla has said that it was disappointed with this decision as it has always been fully committed to projects it is tasked with carrying out.  

"We are saddened that the States of Guernsey has chosen to end negotiations with RG Falla with regard to the construction of Les Ozouets Campus.

"RG Falla has always remained committed to carrying out the project, however both the terms of the intended contract and overall programme were onerous and not commercially viable. We sought to undertake alterations to the proposed contract that would have enabled RG Falla to successfully undertake the project, without undue risk to the company, its employees and other clients.

"RG Falla has committed substantial resources and costs to this over the past 6 months and it is very disappointing that the States of Guernsey has decided not to proceed."


Pictured: RG Falla's new direction into 'small works' includes insurance jobs and home makeovers. 

Details about RG Falla's expansion into 'small works' have been detailed on the firm's website this week.

It says that "highly skilled tradesmen" are available to carry out "Insurance Company instructed repairs, home makeovers, extensions and office upgrades".

This work will be overseen by "very experienced management and site teams" - however who will be doing that is unclear.

All information about the RG Falla team has been removed from its website. A section titled 'Our Team' used to contain details of its senior management personnel. By Thursday of this week that section was blank and by Friday morning it had disappeared entirely.

Express understands that the former Managing Director of RG Falla, Paul Mason has left the company. 

Attempts to reach RG Falla for further comment have been unsuccessful so far. 


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