Welcome to this week’s e-news.

This week Leanne and I have been putting the final touches to the National Constructing Excellence Awards which are taking place tomorrow evening at the London Marriott Grosvenor Square Hotel. We would like to wish all the North East finalists the very best of luck and fingers crossed!

On Tuesday morning Leanne attended the CECA North East & Watson Burton monthly morning briefing, this month looking Construction Contracts from Scratch. Sarah Wilson, Partner for Watson Burton explained the in-outs of everything that needs to be included in a contract as well as the legal obligations. The next in the series will be held on November 17
th, please contact the CECA NE office to book a place.

Next week we have one event taking place which is our annual charity quiz night in association with RIBA North East. We have a few team places remaining so if you haven’t yet booked please contact Leanne. If you are unable to attend and would like to donate something towards the raffle please contact us.

We are in the process of finalising our 2016 CENE Awards and sponsorship information is now available, please contact Leanne for package information.

As you know we are out of the office for the next two days and if you do wish to get in touch with us please email us or call our mobiles if urgent.

Best wishes


Refusing to Mediate 

In the recent case of Murray & Another v Bernard [2015] EWHC 2395 (CH) the Claimants were successful.  During the costs assessment the Defendant argued that the court should not allow their costs as the Claimants had failed to take an opportunity to mediate.

The judge didn't agree that the Claimants had failed to mediate.  Although the Claimants had refused to mediate at an earlier stage, this single act of refusal was not fatal.  The Claimants were entitled to change their minds, and did so.  The reason that mediation didn't take place was because the Defendant wasn't ready.  The judge concluded that this was not a basis on which the Claimants should be denied their costs.

Over the last few years, the courts have imposed costs sanctions on parties that fail to mediate.  Here the Court has taken the time to examine the facts and come to a decision on whether the Claimants conduct was acceptable.

We should take away from this case that the court will probe a party’s reason for not mediating going as far as reviewing individual pieces of correspondence.  Any party to a dispute is well advised to give careful consideration to mediation.  The consequences of not doing so can be significant from a costs perspective.

For more information please contact Rob Langley on 0191 211 7975 or robert.langley@muckle-llp.com

29/10/15 - Spooky Quiz Night  - Few teams remaining! 

Date: Thursday 29th October 2015
Time: 6.45pm registration, 7.15pm start, 10.30pm Close
Venue: Centre for Life, Times Square, Newcastle upon Tyne
Parking: Times Square Multi Storey Car Park
Cost: £50+VAT per team of 5

Constructing Excellence in the North East, Generation 4 Change NE along with support from RIBA North East Young Practitioners Forum are delighted to be once again holding their charity quiz night on Thursday 29th October 2015 at The Centre for Life and we would be happy if you would be able to join us for a fun filled evening with a variety of themed rounds to test everyone’s ability.

A traditional “pie and peas” supper will be served during the evening.

There will be a raffle held during the evening and would appreciate your support with donations. If you would like to donate a prize please email Leanne. (Your logo will be displayed on the quiz guest list on the evening)

There is no objection to entering more than one team so please encourage your clients and work colleagues to join in! 

To book your team please contact Leanne McAngus at leanne@cene.org.uk or call 0191 5007880

5/11/2015 - Introduction to Coastal Management 

Date: 5th November 2015
Time: 8.30m – 10.00am
Venue: Offices of Royal Haskoning , Newcastle upon Tyne
Cost: £25+VAT CENE Members / £50+VAT Non Members (Cancellation policy is within 48 hours notice)

Constructing Excellence in the North East in conjunction with Royal HasknoningDHV are delighted to be holding this morning briefing on Coastal Management, the do’s and don’ts and more.

This presentation will explore various approaches to the management of our coastlines against erosion and sea flooding, from structural solutions (such as seawalls and rock revetments) to more recent approaches of managed realignment and adaptation to coastal change. 

Examples will be provided from various sites along the north east coastline, including a case study of the Littlehaven Promenade and Seawall Scheme, which will be representing the north east region at the forthcoming Constructing Excellence National Awards and which also collected the Project of the Year at this year’s CENE Awards in May.

To register please contact Leanne on 0191 5007880 or leanne@cene.org.uk 

This seminar is worth 1.5 hours CPD. 

6/11/2015 - First Friday Club 

Date: Friday 6th November 2015
Time: 12.30pm – 2.30pm
Venue: TigerTiger, The Gate, Newcastle upon Tyne

Constructing Excellence in the North East in association with Watson Burton LLP would like to invite you to the First Friday Club. The leading networking event for construction, architectural and built environment professionals in the North East, First Friday Club gives you the opportunity to catch up in an informal environment with others in the industry.

We are delighted that Balfour Beatty will be sponsoring our November event.

Balfour Beatty is a leading infrastructure group with more than 100 years of experience. They finance, develop, build and maintain innovative and efficient infrastructure that supports communities and enables economic growth. 
Balfour Beatty Construction Services UK form part of this group with offices spread throughout the UK including their regional hub located within the Cobalt Business Park which provides expertise across the areas of civil engineering, construction and mechanical & electrical works. Their offering extends from the expertise needed to construct multi million pound projects and developments to the skills and care required to restore fragile listed buildings and structures.

They are currently responsible for delivering several contracts of regional importance including the £50m upgrade of the A1 between Coal House and the Metro Centre, and the £10m construction of Tyneside’s first district energy centre. In delivering such schemes they are committed to leaving a lasting legacy within the communities in which they operate through their ‘Involved’ programme which focusses on local employment & skills, community engagement, and local procurement.

Our November event will be held at TigerTiger Newcastle, Newgate St, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 5RE and light refreshments will be provided.

Spaces are limited so reserve your place now by completing the online booking form here.

For further information or for sponsorship packages for 2016 please speak to Leanne on 0191 5007880 or leanne@cene.org.uk  


11/11/2015 - CE National Convention - Beyond the Built Environment

Date: Wednesday 11th November 2015
Time: 10.00am – 4.00pm
Venue: Lords Cricket Ground, London

The 2015 Constructing Excellence Annual Conference is taking place on 11 November at Lords Cricket ground, and will consider a wide range of issues facing construction while looking ‘beyond the built environment’.

This year’s conference aims to show how other industries are tackling a number of the key issues that are facing our industry, and that are set out in the Construction 2025 strategy.

The days speakers will demonstrate how their organisations deal with the same issues that we are faced with, issues such as:

•Supply chain integration and collaborative working

•Embracing, and the use of technology and data management

•Importance of social value

•Attracting young people into their industries

Our final speaker will be a well-known construction client, who will show how everything we have heard during the day can and is being used within certain parts of the industry. The challenge we face is to make it the norm not the exception.

So please join us at what is sure to be an excellent event where we hope you will take away key messages and innovations that show how it can be applied within your organisation, and how we can take one step closer to excellence within the built environment and one step closer to our industry being the industry of choice for the next generation.

To engage with the event on social media in the run up and on the day itself please us the hashtag #BeyondBE

You can make sure you are notified when bookings open for the conference by registering your interest here

18/11/2015 - 8 Reasons why the RIBA Plan of Work makes Business Sense

Date: 18th November 2015
Time: 8.30am – 10.00am
Venue: Offices of Ward Hadaway, Sandgate House, Quayside, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 3DX
Cost: £20+VAT CENE Members / £40+VAT Non Members (Cancellation policy is within 48 hours notice)

Tim Bailey is founder of xsite architecture and the author of the recently published Design: A Practical Guide to RIBA Plan of Work 2013 Stages 2 and 3. A guide that explains the importance of the Concept Design and Developed Design, how to achieve a balance of creativity and method and how it should interact with the briefing and construction phases.

While there seemed some hesitation in parts of the industry to adopt the new RIBA Plan of Work (PoW) when it was introduced in 2013, it is clear now that it has become the ‘new norm’ for referencing work stages across the industry. This is testament to the enduring power of a simple and clear framework for the processes that we all recognise every project has to go through to be successfully completed. The real beauty of the 2013 version is its ability to capture the flexibility required to match current procurement trends. And its secret weapon is its usefulness as a way for design teams and contractors to connect their design management skills to their business needs.

To register for this event please contact Leanne on 0191 5007880 or leanne@cene.org.uk

This seminar is worth 1.5 hours CPD. 

19/11/2015 - Armed Forces Employability Pathway 

Date:   Thursday 19th November 2015
Time: 8.30am Refreshments, 9.00am Presentations, Close 10.30am 
Venue: TBC

 What is AFEP?

The Armed Forces Employability Pathway (AFEP) construct links the Army Reserves, Local Authority, Job Centre Plus and local employers together to assist in moving course participants closer to the labour market, typically NEETs and unemployed, through their participation in a 6 week programme.

Our next course is in November, it is focussed around the North Tyne area.

The programme consists of:

Week 1 - with the military, developing communication, teamwork, problem solving skills in an environment that promotes respect, reliability and integrity…and more.

Weeks 2-3 – with a local training provider, developing an understanding of H&S, completing CSCS (if appropriate for work placement) and SFEDI course, including updating CV writing skills etc

Weeks 4-6 – with a local employer

Employers are not asked to guarantee employment, although there is an opportunity for them to ‘talent spot’. However, a requirement is to provide an interview for the individuals on work placement, helping them to identify where they are performing well and where there may be areas for improvement.

During week 1, there will be a visitors day where attendees can engage with the participants as they undertake their military training.

Google: AFEP Promo DVD

AFEPs planned:

Nov 15 – North Tyneside

Jan 16 - East Yorkshire

Feb 16 – Tyne & Wear

Mar 16 - South Yorkshire

May 16 – Durham Tees Valley

To book a place please email leanne@cene.org.uk or call 0191 5007880

26/11/2015 - Restoring a Past....Preserving a Future 

Date: Thursday 26th November 2015
Time: 8.30am – 10.30am
Venue: Offices of DAC Beachcroft LLP, Newcastle upon Tyne 
Cost: FREE to CENE Club Members / £35+VAT Non Members (Cancellation policy is within 48 hours notice) 

Constructing Excellence North East Club in association with Quadriga would like to invite you along to hear from Quadriga providing an informative overview of traditional and contemporary repair solutions, which can be used in the conservation, preservation and restoration of buildings and structures.

The presentation is of particular relevance to those who are aware of their responsibilities when it comes to the care, repair and maintenance of historic and classical buildings. A range of techniques is discussed to care for the fabric of structures with sensitivity, imagination and minimum intervention.

This discussion will include details of our key areas of expertise, such as masonry, stone, timber and concrete repair. We will also look at case studies from some of Quadriga’s successful past and ongoing projects on historic buildings to show how we apply our methods in a practical way. 

Our techniques aim to give old buildings new life for future generations, and in this Construction CPD talk we pass on our knowledge and experience to you.

To register for this event please contact Leanne on 0191 5007880 or leanne@cene.org.uk.

This seminar is worth 2 hours CPD.