To be headquarters at Warrington, in North West England the joint venture will bring together the expertise of both companies to bid for contracts at Tier 2 level in the nuclear engineering sector.

AREVA senior executive vice president for the back end business group Dominique Mockly expressed his confidence to meet the challenges of the decommissioning in the country while expanding the company’s presence in the region.

Atkins energy CEO Martin Grant added, "We have been involved in the UK nuclear clean-up programme since the late 1980s and bring a wealth of experience in the UK nuclear sector.

"The partnership we have created today will allow us to further develop skills and capabilities to support a long term, sustainable UK nuclear industry."