Storm repairs help push construction output to record high

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Construction output has soared, contempt the wider UK system opening to slow, according to the latest figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

A operation of tempest repair works and projects restarting aft COVID has helped to boost the sector.

The ONS figures uncover that operation output roseate by 3.8 per cent, oregon £539m, during the archetypal 3 months of 2022, compared with the erstwhile year, and present basal astatine 1.9 per cent supra pre-pandemic levels.

Increases were recorded successful some caller work, which roseate by 2.8 per cent, and repairs, which accrued by 5.5 per cent twelvemonth connected year. Seven of the 9 ONS-monitored operation sectors saw a emergence successful work, with lone infrastructure and nationalist caller enactment seeing falls.

Non-housing repair and attraction soared by 7.4 per cent. Overall, operation output saw its strongest monthly maturation since the archetypal 4th of 2017.

The ONS stated that construction’s monthly output had risen for the fifth-consecutive period to £14.9bn successful March. Total caller enactment was £9.3bn, portion repairs and attraction stood astatine £5.7bn.

Alongside the emergence successful output, the ONS operation terms scale soared, reflecting an summation successful the terms of earthy materials specified arsenic steel, concrete, timber and glass, “contributing to an wide emergence successful worldly costs crossed the quarter”.

Commenting connected the figures, Tony Shaw, managing manager of Henry Boot Construction, said: “The biggest situation is ensuring that projects are capable to beryllium delivered successful enactment with outgo proposals and contracts, with the terms of materials rising rapidly, highlighted successful today’s information [...]

“Early and collaborative engagement betwixt customers, main contractors and subcontractors volition beryllium indispensable for leveraging marketplace cognition and delivering projects successful this environment.”

The ONS stated that “anecdotal grounds from returns received for our Monthly Business Survey for operation and allied trades suggested storms betwixt 16 and 21 February 2022 resulted successful businesses seeing a higher workload successful March 2022. This is due to the fact that of the repair enactment derived from the storms.”

Beard Construction besides noted that the storms crossed the UK, which damaged buildings specified arsenic the O2 arena successful London, had perchance helped to temporarily boost the output figures.

The contractor’s concern director, Fraser Johns, said: “The monthly maturation figures are perchance skewed by repair and attraction enactment done aft the 2 wintertime storms. Meanwhile, all-important caller enactment successful March sits astatine 1.6 per cent beneath February 2020 levels.

“Perhaps astir concerning is the continuing emergence successful the terms of earthy materials, specified arsenic steel, concrete, timber and glass. This has pushed terms maturation successful the operation manufacture to its highest level since records began and remains a situation to competitory tendering.”