There’s no doubt that the uncertainty of the coming months has had an impact on the construction sector and in particular housebuilding. However, by continuing to innovate housebuilders can help themselves to mitigate the risks.
Innovation is one of the four themes of UK Construction Week (UKCW) this year. Construction professionals from across the building trades are set to come together at UKCW now in its fifth year to discover innovative products, network with industry colleagues and build on their knowledge. The show covers all aspects of construction from build to timber and energy to materials all under one roof. This year UKCW, the UK’s largest event for the built environment takes place between 8-10 October at the NEC in Birmingham and it is free to attend.
The Build section, sponsored by Easy-Trim, covers every facet of the building industry, including new offsite building systems and time-saving construction software, to tools, building products and expert consultancy support.
By attending UKCW you will walk away with practical information on new technologies, systems, products and collaborations from around the world that would otherwise take months to research. The latest building innovations will be present, updates on Modern Methods of Construction, numerous conferences and career advice are all easily accessible.
Disruptors are now present in many different markets, so this year UKCW is shining a spotlight on the serious change-makers in construction. To aid the search, a new Innovation Zone has been established in partnership with the Construction Innovation Hub (the Hub). The Hub is running the Platform Design Programme, which is aimed at transforming construction by developing a new ‘kit of parts’ approach. Find out more about this project at UKCW.
Continuing with the innovation theme, the Innovation Station, in partnership with On the Tools, is a new addition to UK Construction Week this year. Leading manufacturers will be showcasing their latest power tools and offering demonstrations within the demo area. Discover biscuit jointers from top trade brands and heavy-duty bench grinders for your workshop and learn from the experts on tips and advice on how to get the most from your range of tools.
Modern Methods of Construction
New for 2019, the Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) Hub will offer a programme of seminars which deliver case studies of successful projects in healthcare, education, leisure, housing and retail, with clients, contractors and providers of MMC sharing their insights. Four full scale buildings will be on display during the show, a modular care annex for the healthcare sector, SIPS panel residential building, modular bathroom pod for the high-end hotel sector and offsite solutions for the education sector.
Exhibitors in the MMC Hub will be showcasing a range of products including timber, light gauge steel and concrete frames, modular volumetric systems, digitalisation of construction, 3D printing, products and services manufactured offsite, robotics, AR and VR, BIM, autonomous plant, equipment, drones and digital surveying. Exhibitors include: Ideal Building Systems Ltd, Wernick Buildings Ltd, Elliott Group Ltd, CONTAINEX, Talo Elements Ltd, and Procomm Site Services Ltd.
Build on your knowledge
Condense your strategic business learning into one, two or three days of insights. UKCW brings together more than 300 expert speakers including Mark Farmer who will be talking about changing the way that we design and build homes, Peter Caplehorn, chief executive of the Construction Products Association, will be chairing a discussion on ‘Building Safe Homes: When is the fundamental reform’, property expert and TV presenter, Kunle Barker, will be chairing ‘Land Strategy: New opportunities for housing and regeneration’.
The UKCW Main Stage is the place to head to hosted this year by Steph McGovern, BBC Breakfast presenter and George Clarke, architect and founder of MOBIE. It offers a programme of keynote talks and panel discussions on many of the big issues of the day around Government policy, digital innovation, MMC, sustainability, diversity, housebuilding, productivity and skills.
The Working Well Together Theatre is a new element of Build this year. Offering seminars on fire safety, safety while working at height, mental health and the management of drug and alcohol issues.
The Regeneration Hub conference programme will look at regional regeneration with developers, local authorities, and contractors speaking about the positive effects that different projects have had on their local communities. Panel debates and keynote speakers will look at housing, infrastructure and regeneration around the UK’s fastest growing regions.
The schedule includes: 10 steps to energy-efficiency in social and affordable housing; Funding challenges and opportunities for housing; The zero carbon and circular economy solutions for regeneration and housing; and Understanding local growth and how to maximise development value.
This year there will also be more than 150 hours of CPD content available. The programme will take on a different theme for each day of the show, tackling fire safety, health and wellbeing and sustainability. Sessions are free but registration is recommended as seats are limited.
Careers in Construction
A new feature at UKCW for 2019 is a Careers Centre, at which visitors can speak with UKCW construction role models, career advisors, recruitment firms, advisers from the Department of Work and Pensions, professional trade bodies and others about careers in construction or how to attract, recruit and retain talent in the industry.
Step into the shoes of a site manager
Coventry University is back for its second year, experience one of the most immersive construction simulators. Step into the shoes of a construction site manager as you are submerged into a real-life disaster situation on a construction site. The use of a large screen and real-life scenarios using specially-trained actors, not only improve skills but help develop new ways of working designed to impact on your bottom line.
Role Models in construction
For the second year, UK Construction Week will run the UKCW Role Models initiative which will take the most inspiring people working from across the industry and help tell their story to inspire others to join.
Role Models have been taking part in an outreach programme, going to colleges and schools in the coming months to talk to students and teachers at key stages of their education to explain what inspired them to choose construction as a career and bust any myths around the image of construction.
The overall 2019 Role Model of the Year will be announced on Wednesday 9 October by BBC’s Steph McGovern on the UKCW Main Stage.
The Role Models will also be on hand throughout the show offering advice at the UKCW Careers Centre.
Over 600 exhibitors from all areas of the construction industry are set to showcase their products and services to more than 34,000 visitors.
Marley Plumbing & Drainage will be showcasing a range of above and below ground plumbing and drainage products for residential and commercial properties.
Rawlplug is celebrating its 100 years of expertise in fixings, fasteners and tool, plus Weber will be launching an all new product specifically aimed at the MMC market. You will need to be there to find out more.
Other exhibitors include: Google Nest, Cemex, CIMC, Geberit, Grohe, Tradepoint, Quinn, SSE, Mitsubishi, and Polypipe.
Spotted a business you want to connect with? Contact them through the exhibitors’ portal and arrange the meeting in advance. To help with meetings, there’s a new business and networking lounge with free WIFI. The beer festival is also on hand for you to unwind each day with a drink, some street food and a spot of music. The Fischer bar is in Hall 11 and the Rawlplug bar is in Hall 12. Don’t forget the Beer Festival and of course the ‘Rockaoke’ on Wednesday night.
This year will see the inaugural UKCW Construction Awards take place. They will be hosted on the UKCW main stage from 5pm on Tuesday 8 October. The all new awards are free to attend for shortlisted companies and they will celebrate innovation and excellence for a range of large and small contractors, architects, clients, suppliers and manufacturers serving construction.
On Wednesday 9 October, look out for the UKCW Role Model of the year, and the new Building Trades Awards with Fix Radio, the Structural Timber Awards are also taking place.
Nathan Garnett, UKCW event director, said:
“UK Construction Week attracts more than 34,000 housebuilders, building contractors, consultants, tradespeople, merchants, architects and product manufacturers each year.
“As the largest event dedicated to knowledge sharing, best practice, problem solving and product sourcing, UKCW creates a single place for the whole industry to discover, develop, discuss and do business; providing all the answers for how we build for our future.
“You can source new products, meet potential new customers, and forge business partnerships. There are also plenty of opportunities to learn about developments in construction keeping you one step ahead of the competition.
“So, if you just go to one show this year, make sure it’s UKCW. You can’t afford to miss it.”
UK Construction Week is one event with many sections, including Build, sponsored by Easy-Trim, Building Tech, Civils, Energy and HVAC, Surface and Materials, and Timber. It also features Concrete Expo (8-9 October only) and Grand Designs Live (9-10 October only). Single registration gives free access to all areas of the show. Pre-booking is also strongly recommended for the extensive seminars and CPD programme.
Follow UKCW on Twitter at @UK_CW and search the hashtag #UKCW2019 to keep up to date with the show.
To find out more about UK Construction Week or to register, click here