Garden Bridge Working Group

The London Assembly has been examining the procurement of the Garden Bridge design contract since September 2015. 

Questions were raised about the process following a series of Freedom of Information Requests by journalists and Assembly Members.

The role of the Garden Bridge Working Group is:

To consider, on behalf of the London Assembly, any additional information now available in relation to the Garden Bridge project and related matters and to report back to the GLA Oversight Committee on those matters at the earliest opportunity.

Recent Work

Almost £53.5m was spent on the Garden Bridge project.

The overall public sector contribution amounted to £42.86m, with TfL paying £23.92m.

The most recent report into the project was from the Garden Bridge Working Group in October 2019. 
The report 'Up the Garden Path' found that key decision-makers involved in all, or part, of the Garden Bridge project have passed the buck consistently since its ill-conceived beginnings in 2012.
The report suggests that all involved, were ultimately responsible for the project’s failure.


Two other reports on the Garden Bridge project have also been produced: the GLA Oversight Committee’s report of March 2016, and Dame Margaret Hodge’s report, commissioned by the Mayor in October 2016.

These two reports had very different terms of reference.

In March 2016, the GLA Oversight Committee was charged solely with investigating the circumstances and procedures surrounding procurement during the very early stages of the project.

Dame Hodge, examined the project six months later, and was asked to look at conduct and procedures more widely, as well as the escalating costs of the project and whether it continued to represent good value for public money.


Monday 15 April

The Garden Bridge Working Group examined whether Transport for London’s oversight of the project was robust enough, its relationship with the Garden Bridge Trust, and whether it was right to release further public money for the project.  The guest was Andy Brown, Head of Corporate Services, Transport for London.


Trustees from the Garden Bridge Trust were invited to attend – but they refused the invitation.


Monday 13 May

Who made the decision to release the £7 million of public DfT funding?

What conversations took place between the Garden Bridge Trust, the project managers at TfL and the TfL Commissioner?

What conversations took place between the TfL Commissioner and the former Mayor?

What lessons have TfL learned?

Could the same mistakes be made again?


The Garden Bridge Working Group questioned:

  • Mike Brown, TfL Commissioner
  • Andy Brown, Head of Corporate Services, TfL
  • Alex Williams, Director of City Planning, TfL



Tom Copley letter to Mike Brown requesting the construction contract - 10 April 2019

Garden Bridge Trust response – 5 April 2019

Tom Copley letter to the Garden Bridge Trust – 26 March 2019


Richard di Cani response – 17 April 2019

Tom Copley letter to Richard di Cani – 3 April 2019


Ernst and Young response – 8 December 2018

Len Duvall letter to Ernst and Young – 16 August 2018


Mike Brown response -  7 August 2018

Tom Copley letter to Mike Brown – 18 July 2018 


Ernst and Young response - 30 July 2018

Len Duvall letter to Ernst and Young - 6 July 2018


The Mayor responds to Len Duvall about lessons learned - 12 June 2018

Len Duvall letter to Mayor Sadiq Khan, about the lessons learned from the Garden Bridge Project - 9 May 2018

Previous work

To see further work the Assembly conducted into the Garden Bridge design procurement view this webpage.

Garden Bridge Working Group Committee members

Contact the Garden Bridge Working Group

If you have a media enquiry relating to the Garden Bridge Working Group please contact:

Head of Communications: Alison Bell, [email protected] 020 7983 4228

Senior Policy Advisor: 

Committee Officer: 

You can also visit the Garden Bridge Design Procurement page of this site for more info.


Browse meetings and agendas for this committee and check out further information relating to the committee.

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