23rd December Journal Column

By Catriona Lingwood, Chief Executive of Constructing Excellence in the North East

It’s that time of year again when everywhere you look there are reviews of the last 12 months and predictions of what we can expect from the year ahead. If I had to summarise what 2016 was like for our industry, I would say two things- amazing, but bloomin’ hard work!
A new year is a natural point in time to stop, assess how things have gone over the past 12 months, look at everything that we’ve achieved and look at what we can do better in the coming year. The end of 2016 marks the end of the industry as we know it, for good or bad we don’t know yet, but what’s certain is that the industry will definitely change over the next few years- in the words of our new Prime Minister Theresa May ‘change is going to come’.

It’s certainly been a year for reviews and changes. This year, Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) came under review to look at how they can deliver the homes the country needs. It was agreed that there’ll be a review and total reform of the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB). April saw the collaborative use of BIM Level 2 in all government procured buildings become mandatory, not to mention the end of the Budget update and the Autumn Statement as we know it. It really has been all systems go!

Probably the biggest thing to come out of 2016 is Britain’s decision to exit the European Union, the impact of which we are still unsure of. Currently, the impact of the Brexit decision hasn’t really been felt, but that’s all going to change next year as we prepare to leave the EU. This is a move that could take six years, so we’re just at the start of what I expect will be a very long and demanding journey.

As well as the industry, we at Constructing Excellence in the North East (CENE) have had a very eventful year. We’ve had a very full Continuing Professional Development (CPD) calendar, which has seen us go up and down the country for events and awards. We’ve had the Constructing Excellence Awards, both Regional and National, and the first Generation 4 Change Awards, celebrating young professionals in the industry – something we are always more than happy to do.

There are so many other things that I could mention as it’s certainly been a busy year, but I don’t want to keep you away from your festivities for too long! So, based on that, there’s just one thing left for me to say, from all of us at Constructing Excellence in the North East, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous 2017.