Peel L&P say each individual home at Redbridge Quay is being “precision-engineered using Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) and will exceed all carbon reduction targets”. Town House alone is described as over 50% more energy efficient than the average new build home.

THE first residents have moved into homes on Wirral Waters’ now completed Redbridge Quay development.

Arthur and Doreen initially left Liverpool and moved to Lancaster but say there were drawn back to the city region because of its history and connectivity.

They really enjoy being by the water, so when they found Redbridge Quay, they sold up and moved straight back.

Located in the emerging Northbank neighbourhood at Wirral Waters, the waterside development is surrounded by beautiful Grade II listed grain warehouses, a new pocket park, green landscaping and new public realm, including dockside walkways.

Arthur and Doreen initially left Liverpool and moved to Lancaster but say there were drawn back to the city region because of its history and connectivity.

They really enjoy being by the water, so when they found Redbridge Quay, they sold up and moved straight back.

Located in the emerging Northbank neighbourhood at Wirral Waters, the waterside development is surrounded by beautiful Grade II listed grain warehouses, a new pocket park, green landscaping and new public realm, including dockside walkways.

Wirral estate agent, Jones & Chapman, has been appointed by Peel L&P to market and sell the highly sustainable two, three and four-bedroom, modular homes now complete at Redbridge Quay, Wirral Waters.

The estate agent will market over 350 homes which will make up this development, with the first phase of 30 homes now complete.

Peel L&P say each individual home at Redbridge Quay is being “precision-engineered using Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) and will exceed all carbon reduction targets”. Town House alone is described as over 50% more energy efficient than the average new build home.

Richard Mawdsley, Peel L&P’s director of development for Wirral Waters, said: “We are delighted to welcome Arthur and Doreen to Redbridge Quay and hope they will enjoy everything that Wirral Waters, and the Wirral, has to offer.

“We are also pleased to appoint Jones & Chapman as the agent for Redbridge Quay and look forward to welcoming them to the Wirral Waters family.

“This is a very exciting residential development for the Wirral as it will bring the very latest in sustainable housing design and innovation to the area which will be a huge appeal for so many families looking for a sustainable, energy efficient home.”

Claire Scott, land and new homes director for the North and Scotland, Sequence Homes, added: “Wirral Waters is one of the most exciting regeneration projects in the UK presently.


Source: Wirral Globe


Earth Friendly Concrete has already saved the equivalent of 29 return flights from London to Melbourne in CO2 emissions on the HS2 construction project


The revolutionary ultra-low carbon concrete called Earth Friendly Concrete (EFC) has supplied more than 2,000m3 to the UK’s flagship High Speed 2 rail project – a total reduction of nearly 500 tonnes of carbon dioxide compared to if traditional Portland Cement-based concrete had been used. This is the equivalent to an individual taking 29 return flights from London to Melbourne. EFC is being poured for HS2’s construction conveyors which will be in place for the next decade at least on the eastern and central London sections of HS2 from Euston to Acton.

With the built environment accounting for 25% of the UK’s carbon emissions, HS2 is mitigating its carbon footprint by using EFC because it typically emits 75% fewer carbon emissions than traditional concrete. If Earth Friendly Concrete was used for the whole of HS2, it would reduce its carbon footprint by 2.5m tonnes of CO2 – the same in weight as 38 of the Royal Navy’s new aircraft carriers.

At the heart of the HS2 works is EFC’s collaborative business dynamic. The only way to secure the UK’s net zero future is by industry members working alongside each other to achieve goals that are in everybody’s interests. To provide our ultra-low carbon concrete to HS2 we have worked closely with SCS Railways at Acton, John F Hunt at Euston and Keltbray at Maria Fidelis, where EFC has been used for various applications including conveyor foundations, crane mats, piling mats and deep raft foundation slabs.

The core of EFC ultra-low carbon technology is the EFC Activator Solution; a geopolymer system that binds industrial waste to make zero-cement concrete. EFC is the only zero-cement concrete technology that has been proven at scale on real life commercial projects globally. Every cubic metre of Earth Friendly Concrete recycles around 400kg of waste materials and is, therefore, a major contributor to the circular economy. This contrasts with traditional concrete, which uses mainly Portland cement and water.

Concrete is the most widely used resource on the planet after water and contributes 8% of total world emissions. According to Chatham House, if the cement industry were a country, it would be the third largest emitter of carbon dioxide after the United States and China. With current housing targets and other infrastructure planned, such as HS2, over the next decades, EFC will be a key component to the UK achieving its net zero goal by 2050.

Andy Izod, UK Regional Manager for EFC said:

EFC could drastically reduce the UK’s carbon footprint and accelerate the drive to net zero by

2050 – HS2 is a great example of a project that wants to build using high structural performance concrete, but needs it to be as environmentally friendly as possible. We are very grateful to our EFC delivery partner, Capital Concrete, and to the Integrated Project Team at Skanska-Costain-Strabag for their support.”


Kiro Tamer, Head of Environmental Sustainability at Keltbray said:

Keltbray has been using EFC for temporary works elements since 2019 with great success and we have been leading the way in supporting EFC becoming a ‘go to’ construction product in the future for customers demanding more sustainable delivery. Together, materials and construction processes account for 11% of all carbon emissions globally. To decarbonise the sector we must eliminate both operational and embodied carbon emissions. EFC is particularly suited for permanent works use within piled foundations and this is a brilliant milestone to have reached at Maria Fidelis and for construction in the UK in general.”


Daniel Sweeny, Group Sustainability Manager for John F Hunt said:

We have made significant progress in lowering our operational carbon within the Group; however, our greatest challenge now is working with our supply chain to reduce our embodied carbon. Collaborating with Capital Concrete to pour Earth Friendly Concrete at our HS2 Euston project, allowed us to save over 30t CO2e as a direct result. The consequence of this saving is being applied throughout John F Hunt, and we will increase our use of EFC, viewing it as a necessary product to help the construction industry achieve net zero.”




The Critical Care unit at William Harvey Hospital has been shortlisted for a national hospital building award at this week’s Health Business Awards.

The Hospital Building category recognises new building projects that raise the standard of the healthcare environment and demonstrate value for money and project management excellence.

Funded by £14 million national NHS investment, the outstanding 24-bed critical care unit was built in a former car park next to Richard Stevens ward and opened to patients in April this year.

It contains four separate six-bed treatment areas, each with two isolation rooms, and dedicated areas for family and visitors plus excellent staff facilities on the second floor, including a state-of-the-art simulation suite, dedicated rest, change and work areas.

The build was a major team effort bringing together construction partners MTX and 2gether Support Solutions, architects HMY and Day Architectural, with frontline and support teams throughout the Trust.

Clinical leaders from critical care worked closely with architects on the unit’s design, which was shaped by the team’s experiences and learning during the height of the Covid pandemic.

They continued to work closely with the build teams throughout to ensure the new unit was the very best it could be for patients and staff.

Building work got underway during the pandemic, starting with extensive underground works to relocate cables and drainage before the unit’s foundations and frame could go be built.

Once these were in place, the unit quickly took shape, piecing together pre-made sections that were built off-site using nationally-recognised modern methods of construction, then craned into position.

The unit was opened by a former patient who spent three months in critical care following a life-threatening illness and the hospital’s longest serving nurse, Yvonne Davis, 43 years after her first shift at the hospital on its opening night in 1979.

The Health Business Awards recognise NHS achievements, with awards that recognise patient safety, hospital building, sustainability, telehealth, logistics and healthcare IT, among others.

SaxaVord Spaceport announces partnerships with Lerwick Engineering and Fabrication and T12 Consultancy to deliver Rocket Launch Rail 

 Ahead of the UK’s first commercial satellite vertical launch, SaxaVord Spaceport has today announced it has retained contracts with Lerwick Engineering and Fabrication (LEF) and T12 Consultancy. LEF, which holds the manufacturing contract, and T12, specialists in project engineering, will design and construct the launch rail for SaxaVord on the Lamba Ness site in Unst, Shetland. A launch rail is a critical component for directing suborbital launch vehicles. 

 LEF and T12 Consultancy will engineer, design and provide technical services to build the launch rail. The system will be able to support different rockets with a total gross lift-off mass of up to three tonnes. It will be operated remotely in order to adjust azimuth and elevation in response to weather conditions in real-time.  

Installing the launch rail, which is being supported by £378,000 of funding from the UK Space Agency, marks another milestone in the spaceport’s development.  

The launch rail will allow SaxaVord to increasingly become the gateway for the European space industry. It will also allow SaxaVord to widen its service offerings. By making suborbital launches possible, SaxaVord aims to also support research facilities and the education sector. Suborbital launches allow, amongst others, to test, demonstrate and qualify key components for satellites and orbital launches, as well as for scientific research and experiments that require microgravity. Applications include material testing, atmospheric physics and measurements, hypersonic research, technology testing and for education within technologies that are key not only to the space industry. 

Frank Strang, CEO of SaxaVord Spaceport commented, “Construction of SaxaVord’s launch site is progressing at pace and this contract marks a significant next step in the design of our industry-leading launch facilities. By working with local Shetland-based companies we’re continuing to support local businesses and industries at every stage in the Spaceport’s progression.” 


Robin Huber, Director of Business Development for SaxaVord Spaceport added “These contracts signify an important moment in bringing the Spaceport to life. The launch rail will support the development of new technologies which in turn will influence more sustainable space-related activities.” 


Richard Latimer, Commercial Director at T12 Consultancy commented, “This is a milestone contract for our team, in a very exciting and challenging industry. We are extremely pleased that SaxaVord Spaceport has selected us, and we’re looking forward to deploying our innovation and technical experience and playing our part in SaxaVord’s mission.” 


Callum Mills, Technical Manager at LEF commented, “We are very pleased to be involved with the SaxaVord Spaceport project, we see this as a fantastic opportunity to play our part in a project which is not only significant for our company but Shetland as a whole. This has been a very exciting opportunity for LEF to apply our vast experience from our operations within the oil and gas sector for the last 30 years to a unique and exciting project in a new market. We look forward to supporting SaxaVord in their mission to deliver this project.”


Polypipe Building Services sees a doubling in demand for offsite manufacturing services 

Following calls from the government for the greater use of offsite manufacture within public sector projects, drainage specialists Polypipe Building Services has seen a doubling in demand for its fabricated Advantage service in both new commercial buildings and within local authority residential tower blocks.

From 2020 to October this year the Kent-based has more than doubled production of its fabricated soil vent drainage pipes, and this increased demand has generated a growth within their fabrication team by 62% since 2016 as developers look to offsite construction to deliver more efficient, sustainable projects.

Adam Cafer, Advantage Technical Manager at Polypipe Building Services, said: “It’s well publicised that the construction sector is under pressure to deliver more sustainable solutions despite a backdrop of Brexit and a shortage of people and skills.

“As a result we are seeing changes coming through from architects and designers and onto the subcontractors we work with in how they deliver projects in order to meet the government targets for Net Zero.

“Now customers are looking at avoiding any unnecessary project waste which ends up in landfill, and offsite construction and fabrication meets this need because it offers greater precision.

“It also delivers greater cost predictability on projects, as our Advantage team provide bespoke design, cutting, assembling and pressure testing within our state-of-the-art facility.

“This allows contractors to make progress with a made to measure drainage system and also removes the need for specialist teams to be on site to install them.”

The Terrain brand of offsite fabricated drainage stacks at Polypipe Building Services have been used in more than 300 local authority high-rises, and are fast becoming the material of choice because of their speed and ease of installation as plastic is light to handle and easy to adapt to accommodate additional drainage connections and is also less likely to clog with waste product.

Adam added: “Judging on our growth so far, we anticipate offsite fabrication will become one of the fastest growing areas for us in the next couple of years.”

For more information about the Polypipe Building Services Advantage Service go to

National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) have released a Position Statement on Modern Methods of Construction (MMC). The ambition to build homes quickly and sustainably, should not be prioritised at the expense of building safety. Today the NFCC is calling on the Government for tightened rules for the testing of MMC.

Gavin Tomlinson, NFCC Protection and Business Safety Scrutiny Committee Chair said:

“NFCC is concerned that MMC buildings are being designed, approved and built despite a lack of understanding about their performance. Given the current regulatory system has already been described and accepted by Government as ‘not fit for purpose’ even for traditional construction techniques, this adds additional uncertainty in the built environment.”

We’re concerned that MMC buildings are being designed, approved and built despite a lack of understanding about their performance

Gavin Tomlinson, Chair, NFCC Protection and Business Safety Scrutiny Committee

NFCC welcome the current reform of building safety, however, significant cultural change in the system must take place to improve competency levels across the sector and ensure that MMC is promoted and used in a manner which provides safe buildings for all. We believe that building ‘better’ means buildings that are safer for residents from the risk of fire, and for firefighters who respond when a fire does break out.

The construction sector is a strategically significant part of the UK economy. The sector has been struggling to meet growing residential demand, with supply and demand imbalances contributing to unaffordability, tenure shortages and homelessness. NFCC understands that the Government is very supportive of MMC and see MMC as central to the delivery of ambitious housing targets and the Affordable Homes Programme.

Across Government and the built environment NFCC cannot just speak for ease and speed. The safety of residents and safety of operational crews in fighting fires in these buildings is vital, as well as the need to prevent problems arising before remediation of them is needed, usually at greater cost.

Mark Hardingham, Chair of the NFCC added:

“It is vitally important to make sure that products and technologies are safe for use, including their likely performance in a fire, before they are used in the built environment. Not only is this important for safety but it also helps to protect leaseholders from unnecessary costs that can arise when buildings need remediation, or interim measures, including things like waking watches.”

NFCC support reducing the environmental impact of construction wherever possible, and recognise the role that MMC can play in achieving this. However, this must not be at the expense of safety.

Ben Brook, NFCC lead on Climate Change added:

“We are understandably seeing a focus on sustainable building approaches and materials, including the use of timber and living walls. While these may present useful solutions to help reduce the carbon footprint of buildings, they should also be supported by evidence and testing to demonstrate their long-term suitability and safety to provide reassurance for the lifetime of the building.”

The MMC position launched today, asks for a range of measures to ensure that new construction products and technologies do not contribute to the risk of fire and that there should not be a conflict between sustainability, improved building standards and fire safety.


Jacobs of Dallas, USA, have been awarded a contract to support the U.K.’s fusion energy research program. The United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) has appointed the company on all lots of its new Plant Maintenance and Operational Support Services (PMOSS) framework.

Subject to competition under the framework, Jacobs’ project delivery professionals will be embedded in client teams at UKAEA, the U.K.’s national fusion laboratory, to work on some of the world’s most advanced research into machine design, robotics, materials science and fusion fuel.


“Assisting UKAEA to realize the enormous potential of fusion for generating safe, sustainable and low-carbon electricity delivers on our commitment to a clean energy future,” said Jacobs Energy Security and Technology Senior Vice President Karen Wiemelt. “Fusion power would be a new source of safe, non-carbon emitting and almost limitless energy, which makes this endeavor one of the keys to creating a more connected, sustainable world.”

“Delivering fusion energy is a quest – one of the biggest scientific and engineering challenges of them all, but the rewards will be enormous. Putting fusion electricity on the grid has the potential to provide ‘baseload’ power, complementing renewable and other low carbon energy sources as a share of many countries’ energy portfolios,” said UKAEA Chief Technology Officer Tim Bestwick.


The PMOSS framework focuses on key UKAEA-led programs, including the Tritium Advanced Technology (H3AT) facility, which will open at UKAEA next year, aimed at to exploring fuel storage, breeding and recovery techniques for future fusion powerplants. Jacobs’ specialists will also be available to support other UKAEA facilities, such as Remote Applications in Challenging Environments (RACE), which tests and designs robotic and remote solutions; the Material Research Facility (MRF), which researches specialist materials that can withstand extreme conditions; and Fusion Technology Facility (FTF) at Culham and in Rotherham, which will test fusion components in realistic conditions.

Jacobs has been at the forefront of fusion energy for decades, supporting UKAEA-managed Joint European Torus and ITER, the world’s largest fusion project based in Provence, France. Growth in fusion research is creating new opportunities for Jacobs’ engineers in a range of disciplines, including electrical, control and instrumentation, process plant, mechanical, chemical and nuclear; and for scientists specializing in chemistry, physics and materials. To find out more about the opportunities on offer, search

Jacobs are challenging today to reinvent tomorrow by solving the world’s most critical problems for thriving cities, resilient environments, mission-critical outcomes, operational advancement, scientific discovery and cutting-edge manufacturing, turning abstract ideas into realities that transform the world for good. With approximately $15 billion in annual revenue and a talent force of approximately 60,000, Jacobs provides a full spectrum of professional services including consulting, technical, scientific and project delivery for the government and private sector.


Foot Note:

Both fusion and fission produce some level of radioactive waste. However, fission power plants generate unstable nuclei, some of which are radioactive for thousands of years while fusion doesn’t create any long-term nuclear waste.

Foam insulation that expands and contracts ‘could save 40% of cooling energy’

A ‘programmable’ insulation foam that expands in hot weather and contracts when temperatures drop could cut the energy used to cool homes by 40%, according to its creators.

Developed by researchers at the Fraunhofer Cluster of Excellence Programmable Materials in Freiburg, Germany, the foam is aimed at enabling widespread reductions in energy consumption.

Air conditioning devices “devour a lot of energy”, the researchers said, contributing to carbon dioxide emissions and climate change. They hope that programmable home insulation could replace air conditioning systems in future.


“There is huge potential here – up to 40% of the cooling energy can be saved in this way,” said researcher Dr Susanne Lehmann-Brauns.

The programmable insulation is based on a foam that changes shape depending on the temperature – at high temperatures its pores open and the material expands, but when it cools the pores close and it contracts. Unlike conventional shape memory foams, the researchers said the process is reversible and can happen “over and over again”.


Used in a house, the foam elements could expand during the heat of the day to seal ventilation gaps between the walls and their cladding, preventing hot air from entering. At night, it would contract and open the ventilation gaps, allowing fresh air to circulate and cool the building.

The programmable material could also enable high heat transport capabilities in heat pipe applications, the researchers said, or programmable heat storage.

Newcastle Training Hub opens to support the next generation of skilled house builders in the North East


NHBC, the UK’s leading new home warranty and insurance provider, has unveiled its latest Training Hub at Keepmoat’s The Rise development in Scotswood, to support the next generation of skilled house builders in the North East.

Training more than 100 apprentices per year, with an initial focus on bricklaying, the purpose-built facility will immerse apprentices in a realistic working environment adjacent to the Scotswood regeneration site.

The NHBC Training Hub has been built in partnership with Keepmoat, New Tyne West Development Company (NTWDC), Newcastle City Council and North of Tyne Combined Authority. It was officially opened on Thursday 1 December 2022.

This Hub is the second dedicated training facility built by NHBC – the first was launched in Tamworth in 2021 – and forms part of its ongoing commitment to support the next generation of house builders, equipping them with the skills to build high quality new homes. The scheme will train apprentices all year round with numerous cohort intakes throughout the year.


Speaking at the opening, NHBC Commercial Director, David Campbell said: “It’s vital we attract more young people into house building to help address skills shortages and the challenge of an ageing workforce.

“Our Training Hubs provide a realistic work environment where we can deliver an accelerated, front loaded, block release, homebuilding focused, bricklaying apprenticeship. Open to all house builders and their supply chain in the area, we look forward to doing our bit in tackling the skills shortage and equipping apprentices with the skills to build high quality new homes.”


The work is also part of Keepmoat’s ongoing commitment to combat the skills shortage in the area, whilst creating social value and a sustainable community in partnership with NHBC, NTWDC and Newcastle City Council, by generating opportunities in upskilling and employment close to The Rise.


Ian Worgan, Regional Managing Director at Keepmoat, said: “We’re extremely delighted to have the first apprentices starting their on-site experience at The Training Hub, and are excited to follow their journey to becoming the new generation of housebuilders. It’s so rewarding to be able to help kick-start young people’s careers in the construction industry, especially as we have witnessed a significant shortage in skilled labour in recent years, which makes this apprentice programme even more important.

“At Keepmoat we prioritise work experience and apprenticeships by committing to helping young people in the areas we develop, aiming to provide them with skills, knowledge and opportunities to succeed in long-term employment in housebuilding. We’re really proud to work in partnership with NHBC to deliver this incredible hands-on course, which will play an integral part in resolving the current shortfall in experienced bricklayers, as well the delivery of high quality, affordable homes in the future.”


NTWDC Director, Lee McGray added: “We are thrilled NHBC chose to build the Training Hub at The Rise, Scotswood, which we are confident will play a crucial role in tackling the current skills shortage and open the door to local youngsters looking to gain a qualification, work experience and a vocation.

“NTWDC is committed to providing local training and job opportunities and to date has improved access to employment, created 18 apprenticeship roles, safeguarded over 1,000 jobs and backed a number of school and non-development apprenticeships projects.”


The Rise development is designed to breathe new life into the west of the city through a housing-led regeneration programme, which when complete will comprise of around 1,800 new homes with its own heating system and a neighbourhood centre, including community, retail and health provision space.


For more information, please visit: Apprenticeships | NHBC


Octopus Real Estate completes £26m loan for sustainable homes at The Climate Innovation District as part of Leeds South Bank regeneration

  • 247 new homes to be delivered in prime city location
  • Properties will be net-zero carbon, highly energy efficient and sustainably delivered by Citu’s on-site manufacturing facility

Octopus Real Estate, part of Octopus Group and a leading UK specialist real estate lender and investor, has provided a £26m loan facility to pioneering sustainable developer Citu as part of the second phase of Citu’s Climate Innovation District. The development is a major pillar of the Leeds South Bank regeneration scheme – one of the largest regeneration programmes in Europe.

The Climate Innovation District will deliver over 900 high quality, low-carbon, energy-efficient homes. The second phase of the development, funded by Octopus, will include 247 residential units – comprising 161 apartments, 69 houses and 17 affordable homes – as well as six commercial units. These homes will sit at the foot of the award-winning bridge that connects the banks of the River Aire, and will be set amongst multiple climate-resilient public green spaces.

The loan provided by Octopus covers the refinancing of existing debt, and will fund the remaining construction costs, professional fees and associated costs required to complete and sell the units.

All the properties will be delivered using Citu’s own on-site manufacturing facility that produces a timber-framed component system of building, originally designed in collaboration with local Leeds Beckett University.

The completed units will include a Mechanical Ventilation Heat Recovery (MVHR) system which captures and recycles heat from the home. The properties will also benefit from green roofs, rainwater collection, photovoltaic solar panels, and fully electric heating, with no gas boilers. Citu estimates that on average each home will save 4 tonnes of CO2 per year compared to traditionally built homes, plus around 60 tonnes of embodied carbon per home.

Nick White, Head of Development Origination, Octopus Real Estate, commented:

“This is exactly the kind of loan we want to be doing more of at Octopus Real Estate; supporting a regional housebuilder pushing the boundaries of sustainable development to deliver real change. Citu’s Climate Innovation District is a model of how to economically build zero carbon neighbourhoods that create greener, healthier, smarter and better-connected cities.

“At Octopus we are on a mission to reimagine real estate investment to create much-needed sustainable housing that is fit for the future and provides real social value to local communities. The team at Citu are fully aligned with our goals, and we’re thrilled to help them realise the next phase of this innovative development.”


Chris Thompson, Founder, Citu, concluded:

“It’s essential that we change the way we live in our cities. At Citu we develop places that encourage and enable bold change, so we look for long-term funding partners that share this vision. We are pleased to be on that journey with Octopus. Together, we’re building a legacy for the city of Leeds and proving that essential change is both achievable and deliverable for a better, lower carbon future.”