The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) is looking to cut firms from its legal panel.

Firms go nuclear as NDA invites bids for panelsThe Nuclear Decommissioning ;Authority (NDA) is revamping its legal panel before the multibillion-pound decommissioning of the first fleet of civil nuclear plants and experimental and ;research sites ;in Dorset and Oxfordshire.

The government body, which currently operates three rosters of advisers, wants to merge two sub-panels and reduce the total number of firms on its list.

NDA acting legal head Roger Clayson said: “We’ll aim to have four or five firms on the national/projects panel and one on the local panel. All current advisers will be invited to tender and several others have expressed an interest.”

The national panel will merge with the projects panel, but the list of local firms will remain separate.

It is understood that 15 firms will tender for panel places. They should take up their places by September.

The decommissioning of obsolete Magnox reactors is expected to create the bulk of the work for the firms.

Currently ;Brodies, Burges ;Salmon, ;DLA Piper, Field Fisher Waterhouse and Norton Rose are on the projects panel; Burges Salmon, Herbert Smith and Norton Rose are on the national panel; and ­Burness, Cartmell ­Shepherd and HFT Gough & Co ­Solicitors provide local advice.