Multi-million pound funding to transform the UK’s coastal communities through investment in jobs, skills and local businesses opened for bids this week announced Coastal Communities Minister, Jake Berry.

500 new businesses supporting 5,500+ plus jobs have been created thanks to the government’s Coastal Communities Fund.

The opening of the next £40 million round of applications was announced by Coastal Communities Minister, Jake Berry, while visiting Barrow-in-Furness to see first hand how the fund has delivered major economic benefits for the Cumbrian town and wider coastal area.

Coastal Communities Minister, Jake Berry, said “I’m delighted to announce that applications are now open for the next round of the Coastal Communities Fund.

“Coastal Communities up and down the country from Barrow-in-Furness to Brighton have been boosted by this funding which has spurred inward investment, sustainable growth, new jobs and exciting economic opportunities for local businesses.

“By 2020, we’ll have invested nearly a quarter of a billion pounds in our seaside areas, providing thousands of jobs, training places and opportunities along the Great British Coast.”

The Coastal Communities Fund (CCF) supports the economic transformation of UK coastal communities by giving funding to create sustainable economic growth and jobs.

Since 2012, the government’s CCF has awarded grants to 295 projects across the UK, totalling over £174 million. Analysis shows this has been money well spent, with every £1 invested having the potential to create an up to £8 boost to our coastal economies. Successful projects have included:

  • Cornwall council receiving a £1.95 million grant in 2014 to repair and re-launch the Grade II Listed Art Deco ‘Jubilee Pool’ in Penzance to create an all year round visitor attraction sustaining existing jobs and creating new positions (including much needed apprenticeships in an area with higher than average youth unemployment).
  • In January 2015, Blackpool city council received a £2 million CCF grant towards the “Lightpool” project to deliver a radical transformation of the iconic Blackpool Illuminations, creating a compelling new visitor experience and a major boost to the local economy. The project is forecast to have increased visitor numbers by 2.6 million.
  • The Tate St Ives was awarded a £3.87 million grant in 2015 to refurbish and extend the Tate Gallery in St Ives. The new facilities include a new apse gallery connecting the existing gallery to the new extension; a new suite of learning and event spaces; increased capacity for visitors in the reception, cloakrooms, café, new exhibition space, staff accommodation and training space.
  • Amble – the seafood town – Northumberland. Northumberland county council was awarded a £1.8 million CCF grant in 2014 to improve the economy of Amble through infrastructure works to transform the town into a visitor destination promoting seafood, attracting new visitors and creating jobs. The project has provided two new restaurants, improved facilities incorporating a Harbour Village with retail space, and enhanced access along the shore.

Barrow-in-Furness has also benefitted from multiple rounds of coastal communities funding which has completely revolutionised business support in the coastal area from north of Millom across the Furness peninsula to Grange.

This has included:

  • £900,000 in CCF round 1 (2012) being granted to Furness Enterprise Limited to create an innovation network which seamlessly connects local businesses with each other to streamline their supply chains. The funds also supported marketing of key sites, formation of 70 new start-up businesses and help to SMEs in providing training opportunities for unemployed residents to gain the skills they need to find a permanent job.
  • £865,000 in CCF round 3 (2015) to Furness Enterprise Limited to accelerate regeneration in Barrow and the surrounding areas by strengthening supply chains and transforming skills as well as attracting inward investment and helping to provide specialist businesses support to local companies to up-skill and grow.
  • A pilot scale internship scheme placing young people in high tech firms. This led to the OGDEN Trust agreeing to fund 60 placements from 2018 to 2020.
  • Participation in the Manufacturing Forum and revolutionary proposals for a pan-Northern supply chain initiative connecting Northern businesses with manufacturers and service providers
  • A new Furness Energy Forum bringing local businesses together to capitalise on energy supplier opportunities
  • £444,000 in CCF round 4 (2017) to Barrow and Furness Coastal Communities Team to transform visitor facilities on Walney Island and covert an old, derelict built into a community run visitor hub.

Industry must rise to meet UK economy growth

The UK’s economy had higher than expected growth in the three months to September, reveals the latest figures from the Office of National Statistics released today.

According to the ONS, gross domestic product (GDP) for the quarter rose by 0.4%, compared with 0.3% in each of 2017’s first two quarters.

Services and manufacturing industries grew during the period. Industrial production rose in July and August but construction output fell.

The financial markets are now indicating an 84% probability that rates will rise from their current record low of 0.25% when the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meets on 2 November.

Construction is crucial

Construction output in the UK is currently more than £110 billion per annum and contributes 7% of GDP. Approximately 60% of construction output is new build, whilst 40% is refurbishment and maintenance.

The industry accounts for approximately 3 million jobs, 10% of total UK employment and includes both manufacturing and services.

Construction is a high cost, high risk, long-term activity, and so it’s performance is a good indicator of the health of the wider economy. When the economy falters, construction investment often grinds to a halt. However, today’s announcement suggests that our economy is beginning to recover after a tumultuous time post-Brexit. It is imperative that the construction industry recieves the support it needs from government to help continue this upward momentum.

What do you think the industry needs from Government? Let us know in the comments section below, or reach out to us on twitter @BuildSpecifier

A package of support worth hundreds of millions of pounds will be made available to potential buyers of Tata Steel UK. What does this mean for the UK steel industry?

According to the website, the support will include the following:

  • hundreds of millions of pounds worth of financial support on commercial terms will be made available
  • additional grant funding support also on offer
  • comes on top of wider action already being taken by the UK and Welsh governments to support the steel industry
  • A package of support worth hundreds of millions of pounds will be made available on commercial terms to potential buyers of Tata Steel UK, the UK and Welsh governments have confirmed

The announcement follows a second meeting between Business Secretary Sajid Javid and Tata Global Chairman Cyrus Mistry last week in Mumbai where progress on the sales process was discussed.

The UK government has been clear that since Tata announced its intention to divest its UK operations, it is ready to support a credible private buyer of Tata Steel UK, offering financing on commercial terms to support the ongoing operations and deliver long-term investment in the future of the business.

The financial support package will be tailored to the purchaser’s strategy and financing needs. However, it is expected that all, or the large majority, will be through the provision of debt financing. Other options include:

  • providing hybrid (convertible debt) or alternative forms of financing
  • supporting a purchaser’s financing by taking a minority equity stake (up to 25%) acting in support of the purchaser; however, government will not acquire a material element of control over the business

The UK government say that they are actively working with Tata Steel and the British Steel Pension Scheme’s Trustees to find a solution that will help minimise its impact on a potential purchaser, and potentially separate it from the business.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid said “This government is committed to supporting the steel industry to secure a long-term viable future and we are working closely with Tata Steel UK on its process to find a credible buyer. The detail of our commercial funding offer is clear evidence of the extent of that commitment.”

“Ministers have visited Tata Steel sites across the country and the pride and dedication of the highly-skilled men and women working there is obvious to see. We have already delivered on energy compensation, on tackling unfair trading practices and on procurement of British steel, and we will keep on going further to support this vital industry.”

Read more: Sir David Attenborough opens namesake building… by abseiling down living wall in the atrium!

First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones added “We’re committed to supporting any credible bid to secure steel making in Wales. We have worked with the UK government to put in place this significant package of support and we believe that this will help secure a successful sale of Tata Steel’s operations in Wales and the rest of the UK.”

Last week’s announcement, made in partnership with the Welsh government, follows the start of a formal sales process announced by Tata Steel last week. In addition to the support package, the UK and Welsh governments will also be willing to consider additional grant funding support, for example to support the development of power plant infrastructure, energy efficiency and/or environmental protection measures, R&D and training.

The European Investment Bank has also stated that it recognises the diverse challenges facing European steel companies and stands ready to consider possible financing for new investment in the UK steel industry on the basis of specific proposals.

How Europe affects UK steel

Approximately 18,000 people are employed within the UK steel sector. Analysts suggest that if current trends hold up, around one in four of these jobs could be at risk over coming years.

However, whilst cries have been heard for the government to simply bail out struggling companies within the sector to reduce this risk, it isn’t as simple as that. EU rules tightly restrict just how much support governments can give to certain industries. This includes the steel industry, with EU member states not able to use public funds to rescue struggling steel manufacturers.

However, despite these preventions being in place, EU countries are permitted to increase the global competitiveness of their own steel firms, through R&D funding and help paying high energy bills.

Do you think the government’s announcement will help the UK steel industry? Let us know in the comments below!

A panel will look at how the layout of deprived estates can be best regenerated and reused to deliver more quality homes for Britain.

New tenants rights will be at the heart of the regeneration of some of the country’s most deprived estates, Lord Heseltine said this week (9 February 2016).

A panel, who met for the first time today, will look at how the layout of estates can be best used to deliver more quality homes that people can buy and rent.

The experts will also ensure that there are strong protections in place for existing residents so they will always be given the right to return to their communities.

The 17-strong group, co-chaired by Lord Heseltine and Housing Minister Brandon Lewis and reporting to the Prime Minister and Communities Secretary Greg Clark, will develop a national estate regeneration strategy and work with up to 100 estates to tackle deprivation and transform them into vibrant communities.

The Prime Minister announced last month that £140 million would be made available to jump-start the regeneration. The loan funding will allow communities to lever in investment from the public and private sector to deliver ambitious projects that local people can be proud of.

Lord Heseltine said “Estates regeneration is key to transforming the lives of people living on poorly designed housing projects. The panel will provide expert advice, support and explore innovative funding solutions to drive forward the regeneration of estates around the country.”

“However, I am clear that this has to be locally led and we must work with the residents of such estates. I now want to see local communities coming forward with innovative ideas to achieve desirable neighbourhoods that local people can be proud of.”

Housing Minister Brandon Lewis said “We know these estates offer huge potential to be revived so that they become thriving communities and places which people want to live and work in.”

“This panel provides a wealth of experience to kick-start work that will help transform the lives of thousands of people by delivering better homes in better estates.”

The panel met at the York Road Estate in Battersea, London where plans are being developed for a major regeneration scheme.

Wandsworth Council leader and panel member Ravi Govindia said “I’m delighted to join panel and to play a part in unlocking the great potential of our country’s housing estates.”

“Here in Battersea we are demonstrating that estate regeneration can be done with the support of the local community. Our approach is centred firmly on improving the lives of Winstanley and York estate residents and to providing new opportunities and better life chances.”

Future meetings will be held at estates across the country. Members are:

  • Councillor Ravi Govindia, leader of Wandsworth Council
  • Nicholas Boys Smith, director of Create Streets, a social enterprise and independent research institute which pushes for well designed estates
  • Andrew Boff, leader of the Greater London Authority Conservatives housing group
  • Elaine Bailey, chief executive, from Hyde Housing Association, which successfully regenerated the Packington Estate in Islington
  • Paul Tennant, chief executive from Orbit Housing Association, which successfully regenerated Erith Estate in Bexley
  • Tony Pidgley, chief executive of Berkeley Homes – a lead partner on various estate regenerations across London
  • Peter Vernon, chief executive of Grosvenor Estates
  • Jane Duncan, president of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)
  • Ben Bolgar, director of Design Theory and Networks at the Prince’s Foundation
  • Dominic Grace, head of London Residential Development at estates agents Savills
  • Emma Cariaga from the British Land and Thames Valley Housing Association
  • David Budd, Mayor of Middlesbrough
  • Natalie Elphicke, chief executive of the Housing & Finance Institute
  • Graham Allen, MP for Nottingham North
  • Felicie Krikler, associate director at Assael Architecture

The group will now work with a range of local stakeholders, including communities, local authorities, landlords, investors, builders, housing associations, and anyone else with ideas and ambition. It will draw up the national strategy for estate regeneration by the autumn. Its objectives include:

  • providing strong protection for existing residents, such as rights of return
  • delivering more homes for rent and ownership
  • delivering homes more quickly
  • promote high standards of design to provide commercially viable schemes which have the potential to be self-financing
  • encouraging and attracting more private and public sector investment to help regenerate estates

Britain is building again with the number of new homes up 25% in the past year and revived estates will play an important part in providing good quality social and affordable housing, and offering people the chance to achieve their dream of home ownership.

Wandsworth Council has announced ambitious plans to regenerate the neighbouring York Road and Winstanley Estates in Battersea, which will see more than 2,000 new home built. A range of affordable homes will provided for people to buy or rent at below market rates and the number of social rent properties will increase.

The Queen has officially reopened the transformed Birmingham New Street station.

Accompanied by His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, Her Majesty unveiled a plaque marking her visit – the first to New Street in her 62-year reign and her first visit to the city since her Diamond Jubilee tour in 2012.

The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh were greeted by a host of dignitaries – including Sir Peter Hendy, chairman of Network Rail and Mark Carne, chief executive of Network Rail – after arriving at the station on the Royal Train.

They were shown an exhibition of the station through the ages since it was first built in the 1880s and were introduced to many of those involved in building the latest incarnation. They also met staff who help meet the needs of the 170,000 passengers who use Birmingham New Street every day.

The new station, including the new Grand Central shopping complex, was unveiled in September this year after a five-year, £750m Network Rail project.

Today’s opening ceremony, which took place on the station’s stunning concourse under its vast atrium, included speeches from the Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Councillor Ray Hassall, and Sir Peter Hendy before her Majesty unveiled the special plaque which will take pride of place within the station.

The Queen also attended a short service of dedication, led by the Bishop of Birmingham, The Right Reverend David Urquhart, for the PALS War Memorial outside the new station. The PALS were volunteer soldiers from the city who were involved in World War I after signing up to the army in September 1914.

Sir Peter Hendy, chairman of Network Rail, said: “It was an honour to welcome The Queen to Birmingham New Street and be part of a very special day for Birmingham. For such an impressive and transformed station, it was fitting that it was officially reopened by Her Majesty.

“Birmingham New Street is helping to boost the regeneration of the city centre as well as provide the millions of passengers who use it with a modern, 21st century station. With the Grand Central development above it, it is a unique station which is vital to the continued development of Birmingham and the wider region.

“Our Railway Upgrade Plan is providing a better railway for passengers and this station is the latest example of how these improvements are benefiting millions of people and helping boost our economy at a local and national level.”

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, who attended the reopening, said: “Birmingham New Street is a truly remarkable development that is not only providing better journeys for passengers, but also driving economic growth and regeneration across the West Midlands and beyond.

“This is just one example of the record investment we are making in the rail network across the UK as part of our long-term economic plan.”

Chris Montgomery, Network Rail’s project director who oversaw the redevelopment of Birmingham New Street, said: “The Queen officially reopening Birmingham New Street station is the culmination of many years of hard work by thousands of people involved in the project. This is a proud day for the project team, for Network Rail and for Birmingham.”

Sir Albert Bore, leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “Birmingham New Street station has undergone a magnificent transformation and, together with the Grand Central development, has transformed the gateway to our city.

“I am confident this project will pave the way for continued regeneration, creating many more jobs and opportunities for the people of Birmingham.”

The Queen and Duke’s visit was broadcast on the station’s largest ‘media eye’ at the front of the station for the public to watch while many also gathered inside.

The redeveloped Birmingham New Street station opened its doors to passengers on 20 September 2015 after a five-year, £750m transformation.

Boasting an iconic new atrium over a huge passenger concourse – five times the size of London Euston’s – the station has been rebuilt while trains continued to run as normal for the 170,000 passengers a day who use it.

With brighter, de-cluttered platforms, improved entrances, a range of new facilities and an abundance of natural light over the new concourse, Birmingham New Street, one of Britain’s busiest inter-change stations, is also a retail destination in its own right.

The new station will eventually feature 43 shops at concourse level. Above it sits the new Grand Central shopping complex, including one of the UK’s largest John Lewis department stores.

Planning applications for solar farms have soared since the Government announced it was consulting on plans to end subsidy schemes for solar farms that produce 5 megawatts (MW) of power or below.

The recent data, compiled by construction data experts Barbour ABI for Building magazine, shows that a record 83 applications for solar farms worth a total of £431m were put in for planning in July, 73 of which were for proposed 5MW or below solar farms.

The research goes on to show that almost two thirds of the solar projects put in for planning in July submitted their applications on or after the 22nd of the month, the day DECC launched a consultation on closing the renewables obligation (RO) for solar farms at 5MW or below in capacity.

To make a comparison, 45 applications were submitted for the entire month of June, where as 51 were submitted in just ten days between the 22nd and the 31st of July, immediately after the subsidy cut announcement.

Commenting on the figures, Michael Dall, lead economist at Barbour ABI, said “It was not surprising to see a flood of applicants trying to get projects in the planning pipeline immediately after the announcement of the Government’s solar subsidy clawbacks.”

“The Government’s stance on solar is that falling costs have made it easier for the industry to survive without subsidies, particularly with the drop in prices for wholesale electricity prices. “

“However the risk here is that diminishing subsidies could falter a growing industry, potentially putting it under major jeopardy. Up to 27,000 jobs are at risk over the coming years in solar alone, not mentioning other renewable technologies, if more subsidy cuts are on the way.”

Sinkholes have replaced Jeremy Corbyn this week as the centre of media attention, following the opening up of a huge sinkhole in St Albans. The appearance of the massive 66ft diameter and 33ft deep hole in a suburban street resulted in several families in the surrounding area being evacuated from their homes during the night.

There are several reasons why a sinkhole may appear, both natural and manmade. Even the construction industry can be responsible for the ground disappearing from beneath our feet. Whilst there is little we can do to prevent naturally occurring sinkholes, many occurrences have actually been caused by construction-related activities such as drilling, mining, excavation, broken water or drain pipes, heavy structures built on soft soil and heavy traffic. Sinkholes can also form when the land surface is changed.

It is difficult to ascertain what exactly caused the sinkhole in St Albans; however the number of sinkholes appearing across Britain has been steadily increasing – probably even since the advent of irrigation. The drying out of the ground below through the process of abstraction or the saturation caused by a burst water pipe have been causing sinkholes for years.

Construction has undoubtedly played a part in the increase, particularly over the last 100 years. By its very nature, the built environment morphs and changes the environment around us; inadvertently redirecting water into weak points underground. These weak points get larger and more unstable until eventually pits form with almost no prior warning, swallowing cars, houses, and sometimes even people.

Sinkholes are dangerous, inconvenient and costly to repair. As you read this, work is currently underway to fix the hole in St. Albans that appeared last week. The hole will be filled with foamed concrete – a slow and expensive process that is expected to take several days. Residents of Fontmell Close, St Albans had to evacuate their homes following the sudden appearance of a gaping 10m deep hole in their street.

According to the Evening Standard, an emergency access road was created for residents to get their cars out via a playing field behind the site, and the reception centre at nearby Batchwood Sports Centre was used to yesterday and today by people wishing to shower or take shelter.

Needless to say, the cost and the upheaval created by the St Albans sinkhole is something we would all do best to avoid. Whilst natural sinkholes are inevitable and cannot be prevented, there are perhaps steps that could be taken by us as an industry to curb the manmade ones. Good practices such as regularly performing maintenance on underground water systems and plumbing, site surveys and creation of adequate drainage can help deter that sinking feeling. It’s like the old proverb says; “a stitch in time saves nine!”

Plans to reduce the visual impact of electricity infrastructure in nationally protected landscapes across England and Wales have reached a new landmark, following decisions by the project’s independently chaired Stakeholder Advisory Group.

In November 2014, twelve sections of high voltage lines in eight Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs) and National Parks were shortlisted as having the most significant landscape and visual impact, following a study overseen by leading landscape expert Professor Carys Swanwick.

Since then, National Grid and independent landscape consultants have done further technical work with considerable and highly detailed input from local stakeholders in each location. This has enabled the Stakeholder Advisory Group to prioritise four projects from the shortlist.

The Stakeholder Advisory Group’s decisions were made after a rigorous review of each shortlisted section of line. Members at a two-day meeting considered each project using a set of five guiding project principles from the Visual Impact Provision project’s policy.

These four projects will be taken forward over the next 12 months for detailed technical feasibility works which will include environmental studies, archaeological studies and engineering work ‘on the ground’. There will also be further significant engagement with local stakeholders and communities.

National Grid transmission lines which have been prioritised in protected landscapes are:

  • Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty near Winterbourne Abbas
  • New Forest National Park near Hale
  • Peak District National Park near Dunford Bridge
  • Snowdonia National Park near Porthmadog

Using a £500 million allowance made available by Ofgem until 2021, National Grid plans to reduce the visual impact of sections of high voltage overhead lines in these locations. A range of different ways of doing this has been considered in each location.
Given the sensitive nature of these protected areas, replacing existing overhead lines with underground cables has generally proved to be the preferred option both technically and in discussion with local stakeholders.

Chris Baines, Chair of the Stakeholder Advisory Group, said “Reducing the visual impact of pylons and power lines in our most precious landscapes is highly desirable, but it is also very expensive and technically complex so we have had to make some difficult decisions. Although four schemes have been prioritised, none of the locations on our original shortlist have been dropped and they will remain under consideration for future work to reduce the impact of National Grid’s transmission lines under the Visual Impact Provision project.”

Hector Pearson, Visual Impact Provision Project Manager, National Grid, comments “This is a unique stakeholder-driven project, and it continues to represent a major opportunity to conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife, cultural and environmental heritage of some Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and National Parks. We will continue to work in partnership with stakeholders to not only mitigate the impact of our transmission lines in these areas but to also enhance the landscape, and deliver value for money.”

The Stakeholder Advisory Group is chaired by environmentalist, Chris Baines and comprises senior representatives from organisations including the Campaign for National Parks, Campaign to Protect Rural England, Campaign for the Protection of Rural Wales, Historic England, Cadw, Natural England and the National Trust. It was established to help National Grid identify which transmission lines should be prioritised to make use of the £500 million allowance.

The protected landscapes that have not been prioritised are the Brecon Beacons National Park, High Weald AONB, North Wessex Downs AONB and the Tamar Valley AONB. These locations will remain under consideration for future work using the VIP allowance.

National Grid is also set to use part of the £500 million for smaller localised visual improvement projects which can be accessed by all AONBs and National Parks with existing National Grid electricity infrastructure.

Set to be launched in the Winter, this landscape enhancement initiative will to provide up to £24 million over six years. The aim will be to reduce the visual impact of National Grid’s existing infrastructure in AONBs and National Parks and improve the related visual quality of the landscape. A range of local visual improvement projects could enhance biodiversity, benefit cultural heritage or raise awareness of natural and historic features of a landscape.

According to new research published by the RICS, 75% of surveyors believe that slow uptake and non-adoption of BIM could seriously hinder construction as an industry over the next 12 months.
The survey also found that although 74% of surveying firms have considered the very real business case for BIM adoption, there are still a large number of firms not using BIM in the day-to-day aspects of their work.
One of the main reasons for non-adoption appears to be a lack of information; 68% of respondents currently not implementing BIM within their organisation say that they don’t feel there is adequate information available for small companies in order to assist them in adopting the new modelling system.
Luddism is also playing its part to some degree; 31% of surveyors claim that there is not a need to use the technology in their organisation, whilst 26% stated that they don’t feel their firm have the technical knowledge, expertise and resources in place to adopt BIM.
55% of those members interviewed revealed that they are currently already doing business with architectural firms that are utilising BIM. Additionally, half of these respondents said that the architects they have collaborated with have been actively encouraging them to adopt BIM within their own organisations.
Global Director of Built Environment Professional Groups at the RICS, Alan Muse commented “Our research clearly shows that the importance of BIM is not being lost on the UK’s surveying sector with 73% identifying that non-adoption is likely to have a negative impact on the industry as a whole.”
“It’s clear from the research that the industry needs to be doing more to help smaller surveying firms – as well as the wider industry – in getting up to speed with the technology, particularly when it comes to how they can implement the technology across their organisation.”

Welcoming one of the industry’s most well respected names, UK Construction Week is pleased to announce that BRE has joined as official content partner for the event.

Drawing on its significant expertise in every aspect of the built environment and associated industries, BRE (Building Research Establishment) is the leading voice for impartial research, testing and training within the construction industry. Its focus is on helping clients create better, safer and more sustainable products, buildings, communities and businesses, as well as supporting the innovation needed to achieve this.

In its role as content partner, BRE will provide invaluable support in shaping the direction of UK Construction Week, sharing its unique perspectives to develop an informative and highly insightful programme of seminar content.

With a strong emphasis on innovation, training and future construction trends, the seminar programme will provide a vital platform for sharing knowledge and exploring the key issues facing the industry. BRE’s wealth of specialist expertise will add real value to the conversation, with expert speakers joining a number of the debates, workshops and panel discussions.

In particular, BRE will take the lead in representing BIM content, including the most comprehensive BIM education programme ever seen in the UK plus seminar content across the whole event.

Miles Watkins, BRE’s Group Business Development Director commented: “Our key focus at BRE is on helping industry and government meet the challenges of the built environment. UK Construction Week is set to provide a unique chance to interact with professionals from all sectors, giving us a fantastic opportunity to engage, share best practice and help move the industry forward.”

Bringing together nine shows under one roof, UK Construction Week will be the biggest construction trade event the UK has seen in years. Taking place at the Birmingham NEC from 6 – 11 October (with the trade only days from 6 – 8 October) the event will unite 1,000 exhibitors with an expected audience of 55,000 visitors.

Visitors will be able to attend Grand Designs Live, the Build Show, Timber Expo, the Surface and Materials Show, Energy 2015, Kitchens & Bathroom Live, Plant & Machinery Live, HVAC 2015 and Smart Buildings 2015.

Richard Morey, Group Events Director at Media 10, the event company producing UK Construction Week, commented: “BRE’s ability to generate new knowledge plays a vital role in driving innovation within the built environment as well as helping government shape construction industry policy, so the considerable value and insight this will bring to our seminar programme cannot be overstated. We are delighted to welcome BRE on board as content partner for the show.”

For more information please visit or follow @UK_CW on Twitter.