Consultant Atkins is to oversee the national roll-out of the government’s anti-cowboy builder initiative.

Atkins was selected by the DTI from a shortlist of four. Capita, the outsourcing company that runs the quality mark website and inquiry line, was not on the shortlist.

One of Atkins’ biggest tasks will be to establish how the scheme is funded after the government transfers responsibility for the scheme to the industry in 2004.

The scheme currently has a total of 203 quality marked contractors in the four areas in which it has been introduced. The areas are Birmingham, Somerset, Kent and Dover.

The scheme is expected to be rolled out in a further 10 areas by the end of this year.