As one of the UK’s largest off-site manufacturing businesses, Caledonian knows a thing or two about modular buildings. It’s one of the reasons why the company has grown to a turnover in excess of £50m and with a goal firmly set on doubling this over the next 2 years you get the distinct impression they’re set to change how the industry works. Having been founded over 50 years’ ago and now operating from a 40-acre site in Newark, Nottinghamshire, they’re unusual in having one of the longest trading histories in the modular sector.

Success has come about by sticking to what it does best; high quality modular accommodation that is delivered to site with up to 96% of the build completed in its quality assessed manufacturing facility. Proof is in the pudding and they don’t get much bigger than the £53m Hinkley Point C worker accommodation contract that was successfully delivered in 2018. Effectively creating in ‘new town’ in just 51 weeks, it shows the capability of modular construction and how, if the government’s rhetoric on solving the UK’s housing crisis once and for all translates into action, Hinkley is the shape of things to come. Housing providers should take note of what Caledonian has achieved – effectively creating a modular new town at Hinkley that houses 1,496 workers in just 51 weeks.

Caledonian’s innovative modular building system means that programme savings of up to 50% or more are possible compared with traditional forms of construction. And the programme can be more predictable than when using conventional methods as well as reducing waste and number of deliveries to site.

Project delivery

A central pillar to the company’s growth is the ongoing focus on quality and project delivery. The underpinning methodology is to take a traditionally constructed building and apply latest manufacturing techniques to drive efficiencies. The three core areas of this are the use of BIM, design for manufacturing and assembly (DfMA) and lean manufacturing techniques.

The results are replicable, too. The latest is a £25m project that involves Caledonian working with Bowmer & Kirkland to manufacture high quality student accommodation as part of a £54m development for the University Campus of Football Business, First Way Campus in Wembley.

The 680 bedrooms will be manufactured and installed by Caledonian and, similar to Hinkley, will be 96% complete prior to shipping to site. That was one of the main reasons they were selected for this project; because they could show how the modules would help meet the strict deadline dates, which required handover by July 2020 in time for Euro 2020. First Way Campus is situated a few minutes’ walk from Wembley Stadium, and will include a mix of purpose-built student accommodation as well as academic, office and outdoor space.

Fire compliance capabilities of the modular system also featured highly in the selection process, due to the high rise nature of the development. It rises to 11 storeys and that really shows what is possible with the company’s modular building solution. Caledonian gave the client and design team confidence post Grenfell, providing a pre-engineered fire compliant modular solution suitable for a development of this scale.

Damian Flood, CEO of Cole Waterhouse, said “We liked the modular building solution proposed by Bowmer + Kirkland and its supply partner Caledonian for First Way Campus because it was a practical way of meeting the strict schedule. We are providing Wembley and the UCFB students with a fantastic campus that will include a number of facilities for students including purpose built accommodation (678 beds), seminar rooms and staff office spaces as well as amenities such as a café style restaurant, a gym and library/IT suite.”

Developers Cole Waterhouse brokered a deal with Unite Students, a leading provider of student accommodation in the UK. Caledonian has incorporated the Unite requirements into the design to provide a higher standard student living experience than is traditionally expected.

Modular Mindset

Caledonian is a company with an eye firmly set on the future and as Chief Executive Officer Paul Lang explains: “Our ability to deliver to a strict schedule and have an existing fire compliant solution made a compelling proposition for First Way Campus. We are able to achieve consistent project delivery by investing in BIM, design for manufacturing and assembly (DfMA) and lean manufacturing. In combination we believe that it will help us raise industry standards across the board. Our long term goal is to lead change in the industry by establishing a ‘modular mindset’ with clients and developers.”

For more information on Caledonian modular buildings and offsite construction solutions, visit:

As one of the largest specialist off-site manufacturing businesses in the UK, Caledonian Modular offers much more than your everyday construction company. Founded over 50 years ago, they supply around the UK from a 40-acre advanced manufacturing site in Newark, Nottinghamshire.

Over the last few years’ Caledonian has achieved significant growth and now has a turnover of over £50m. A series of new contract wins look set to continue this success with a target of nearly doubling turnover by 2019, an objective they are will on the way to achieving.

Mind you, this kind of performance hasn’t come about on its own, but from a clear vision for the company, backed by a strong management team, and a focus on projects that are aligned with its key strengths and sectors that it understands; education, housing and healthcare. These include an ability to achieve up to 94 per cent completion of building modules off-site, meaning buildings can be handed over in up to half the time it takes for a traditional build, and with less disruption to roads and nearby buildings. Underlying this ability to consistently deliver projects on time and within budget is a commitment to excellence through the use of BIM, design for manufacture and assembly (DMFA) and lean manufacturing techniques.

A case in point is the £55m contract awarded to Caledonian by Laing O’Rourke to build the accommodation modules for Hinkley Point C (HPC) nuclear power station in Somerset. The contract comprises 1,496 en-suite bedrooms across 44 individual buildings at two locations. The first accommodation units rolled off the factory production line in March last year and were delivered 96% finished, ready for rapid completion. Each 34 bedroom block will be completed on site within just eight weeks from delivery. The entire HPC project is worth £18 billion across the board for the Nuclear Build programme, the largest modular government project across the entire country.

Another recent success, in partnership with their partner architects HLM, involved securing first place on the modular framework to provide permanent, component-based buildings and facilities for the ESFA’s new secondary schools block replacement programme. They won this procurement competition with others from the off-site construction sector, securing top spot against 64 other bidders. Being awarded first place immediately secured two projects with a combined value of £12 million, with the potential to realise further schemes within the £250 million funding allocated to the lot.

A track record of delivering these projects on time and within budgets means the management team can replicate their approach on each successive new contract – a great confidence builder with clients and main contractors. A case in point is the £25m contract awarded to Caledonian by Bowmer & Kirkland, announced in the last few weeks, for the 680 bedroom First Way Campus student development in Wembley.

The ability of Caledonian’s modular building system to help meet the strict deadline dates on this project, which required handover in time for Euro 2020, helped secure this contract. As did their pre-engineered fire compliant modular solution suitable for a high rise development, which rises from 7 to 11 floors.

Other recent contracts wins include the MOD Single Living Accommodation (SLA) for MoD Lyneham in Wiltshire as part of a £35m Kier development. Part of the Army Basing Programme, the project will create 296 rooms over 5 blocks, providing accommodation for troops returning from overseas and relocating within the UK. The latest contract continues a long partnership with the MOD, with the team successfully completing 1,145 rooms over 12 blocks on the same base for Kier in 2012/13.

Caledonian Modular prides themselves on the fact that their projects look as authentic as a traditional-build, indeed they are indistinguishable, while remaining as efficient and cost-effective as they do. By sticking to what they know – modular and off-site construction systems – underpinned by BIM, DFMA and lean manufacturing, this Nottingham based company is raising industry standards and demonstrating how modular buildings have the ability to resolve the UK’s building shortages quickly and efficiently.

To find out more about Caledonian’s modular building system, visit Alternatively, call 01636 821645.