Thurston Group, a leading provider for high-quality modular and portable building solutions, is reaping the rewards of success, after a 40% sales growth this year.

Over the last six months, the Yorkshire-based company has grown significantly, with key projects secured within the education, residential, petrochemical and rail infrastructure sectors.

As a result of its rapid growth, the company has appointed six new employees to support the business and meet market demand.

Bob Holloway has been appointed as business development manager to manage the southern region of the UK. Bob brings with him over 30 years’ of experience in the building industry and will be responsible for growing the offsite division further.

James Derry has joined the company as CAD engineer, and he will be responsible for automate model and drawing generation. The company has also welcomed Paul Theobald as production manager and Harrison Hudson as graduate projects manager.

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In addition, the company has recently promoted Matthew Petch after 10 years’ of service. Matthew joined Thurston Group as a trainee accountant, working his way up to company accountant in 2015, before being promoted earlier this year to financial controller.

Matthew Goff, managing director at Thurston Group, says: “It’s a really exciting time at Thurston Group and this significant growth is a huge milestone for the company. Our investment into employees is instrumental to our success and our goal is to continue expanding, both within the business and in the industry.

“Modern methods of construction are becoming increasingly used across a range of sectors due to their speed, flexibility and cost-effectiveness. Our ambition is to continue providing high-quality modular solutions whilst growing our presence in the UK and overseas further.”

Just last year, Thurston Group created more than 60 jobs with the opening of its third manufacturing facility. The unit in Hull produces bespoke modular accommodation across a range of sectors including construction, rail and education. The site also produces its more bespoke project offering that includes buildings that have various forms of pitched roofs, curtain-wall glazing and buildings that require bespoke external cladding finishes.


More than 30 studio apartments for young people who struggle to find good quality, affordable homes have been created in just 12 weeks by one of the UK’s leading modular building companies.

Integra Buildings manufactured the innovative, self-contained apartments in its production facilities in East Yorkshire, using cutting-edge modular building techniques.

The units were then transported by lorry to Bristol, where they were assembled to create Launchpad – a modular pilot project designed to help address a growing housing crisis in the city.

The single-person apartments, which left Integra’s site fitted out with high-quality, fully bespoke interiors will be available to young people aged 18-30 who are looking to leave student rentals, supported housing or over-priced accommodation.

Bespoke modular buildings specialist Integra is now completing the on-site installation of plumbing, power and high-speed broadband, with the homes expected to be ready to move into this autumn.

The rapid turnaround on the £1.4m project was achieved by utilising modular building methods that allow project times to be cut considerably when compared with traditional bricks and mortar methods, with no compromise on quality.

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United Communities, the housing association leading the pioneering project, believes it could be the forerunner for new housing solutions locally and nationally, with key workers among those who could benefit from the modular communities of the future.

Integra Technical Director Mike Marriott said: “Everyone should have access to good quality, affordable accommodation and this project has enabled us to be part of meeting this basic need for young people in a city where housing problems are acute.

“It brings together our expertise and capability in designing and manufacturing robust steel shell units and modular internal fit-outs. That combination has created comfortable and appealing homes, with the desired industrial external appearance.

“The apartments are constructed and equipped to very high standards and comply fully with domestic building regulations. We’re very proud to have played our part in such an innovative and inspirational project addressing a fundamental social need.”

Launchpad is backed by a partnership of United Communities, 1625 Independent People, which supports young people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and the University of Bristol.

Last year, a report by Bristol City Council showed that more than 11,000 people were waiting for council housing in the city, where the average house price had reached almost £300,000.

The initial concept for Launchpad was to convert shipping containers, but it was decided these would be too small and restrictive. Instead, Integra was commissioned to design and manufacture a bespoke version of the shipping container concept, including a larger floor space and higher ceilings.

Integra has delivered a wide range of flagship projects across the UK, in sectors as diverse as sport and leisure, education, healthcare and commercial operations.

Building the Launchpad apartments combined two of the award-winning company’s key areas of expertise – steel fabrication, normally employed in the manufacture of secure anti-vandal units, for the container-style exteriors; and innovative modular methods to create high-quality living spaces.

A ready-made modular kitchen was slotted in, alongside an en-suite shower room, and each apartment has room for a bed, sofa, desk and wardrobe. Light floods in through large windows, with stylish blinds and laminate flooring completing a relaxed, contemporary look.

Integra has also built communal shared spaces, intended to encourage the development of a supportive and sustainable community.

Integra Design Technician Sam Treadaway said: “Shipping containers are very restrictive – instead we’ve created a bespoke product. It’s much larger, with higher ceilings and big windows, to bring in a lot more light, and to meet stringent building regulations, including insulation standards.

“Because it’s fully bespoke, we’ve been able to design the interiors to a much higher specification. These units are self-contained studio apartments, ready for people to move in.

“This has been a very positive project to be involved in and demonstrates the potential of modular construction in tackling important social and welfare issues.”

United Communities Chief Executive Oona Goldsworthy said the reduced project times offered by modular construction had been an important factor.

“The speed of delivery means we’ve been able to do a deal on the land and will move people in within six months,” she said. “There’s a huge shortage of available land for housing projects, but modular gives us the flexibility to use what I call pop-up sites.”

Ms Goldsworthy added: “We’ve learnt a great deal from this pilot. We’d like to house key workers, such as nurses, perhaps using land owned by hospitals. There’s huge potential for creating aspirational modular housing communities.”


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If you need new school space or if it needs to be expanded, we can assist you. In a mobile school created from portable and accommodation units, everything is exactly the same as in a permanent structure. For example, a complete school was built using flexible space modules in just 2 months in Feldbach, Austria. The school consists of 455 portable and sanitary cabins and along with a grammar school, a business school and a teachers college for economic vocations, there is an administrative building and the Feldbach council library.

The bright and friendly rooms created space for 1,300 pupils. By omitting wall panels and partition walls, large areas can be created as required.

The mobile schools can be used as both a temporary transitional or as a permanent solution. Thanks to our decades of experience, you have the opportunity to be very flexible and to resort to existing planning examples.

Omitting partitions in your schools creates large classrooms, teachers’ rooms, canteen areas, changing areas and sanitary facilities including shower facilities. Thanks to the optimal thermal insulation and air conditioning features, our products can be used all year round.


To learn more visit the Containex website here:

It has been a busy period for lifting specialist Britlift as its services are in high demand in the modular and offsite construction sectors

2018 proved a successful year for Britlift in the offsite construction sector as a number of new clients came on board involved in the manufacture of modular buildings and bathroom pods for both residential and commercial use. This has resulted in eleven Britlift beams being used, starting in February 2019, to lift modules on to the world’s tallest modular building, 101 George Street, developed by Tide Construction and Vision Modular Systems UK in London, which will be a huge 44 storeys and 38 storeys of modules across the two towers.

During the course of 2018, Britlift was involved in supplying lifting equipment to 12 offsite projects and secured two long-term clients using Britlift as their ‘go-to’ lifting equipment specialist.

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2019 has seen a further four offsite manufacturing projects supplied to, including securing two further returning clients. Project requirements included a six-point, 34-tonne complete lifting system (including all rigging) for site use; a 25-tonne adjustable lifting frame for use with an RTG; an eight-point, 12-tonne complete lifting system (including rigging); a 25-tonne adjustable lifting frame (including rigging) for use on site; 11-tonne and 12-tonne telescopic spreader beams with rigging and multiple bathroom pod lifting frames and rigging systems.

Britlift has carved a path into the offsite construction sector and has very quickly positioned itself as the number one specialist lifting equipment manufacturer to the offsite construction market.

Through the experience of past projects there isn’t much that Britlift hasn’t seen, considered, designed, manufactured or supplied in regards to lifting both modular buildings and bathroom pods, and it is this experience and expertise that will see further projects in 2019 supplied with Britlift lifting equipment.

As specialists in the sector, Britlift is your perfect partner when a system is required to take lifting stresses out of a fragile load and make the operation safer. Britlift equipment is designed with a vertical connection point to the load in order to remove stresses and ensure each module is lifted and installed safely.

Use the correct lifting equipment for your specific project, make sure it is CE marked and compliant with UK lifting legislation and use a specialist such as Britlift to design and build the right system that suits your project needs.


Liam Botting, Managing director, Britlift


What does it take to be net-zero in the desert in a decade? Joseph Wheeler, AIA, co-director of Virginia Tech’s Center for Design Research shares his team’s design, which placed first out of 60 entries with its modular construction technique and superior performance in the 2018 Solar Decathlon.



Among the many benefits of modular construction is the speed with which a project can be completed, due to the fact construction of modular buildings can occur simultaneously with site and foundation work. By carrying out typically linear tasks simultaneously projects can reach completion 30%-50% sooner than with traditional construction methods.

The value of simultaneity in construction is also one of the benefits delivered by Performance Technology Group. By bringing together expertise and manufacturing capabilities across a wide range of disciplines, PTG are able to reduce the amount of activity required in ensuring a construction project meets fire, thermal, acoustic and other challenges.

Saving Time, Reducing Complexity

Whereas ordinarily, an architect, contractor or installer will have to liaise with multiple contacts across multiple businesses in order to source solutions for their construction project, with PTG there is a single initial point of contact. In principle, a project’s fire, thermal and acoustic requirements can be addressed in a single meeting, with PTG bringing all the necessary expertise to the table. This obviously represents a time-saving for customers (one meeting, rather than several), but there is also a subtler time-saving due to the reduction in complexity.

Complexity, particularly in construction projects, creates numerous opportunities for problems to arise. According to Sven Bertelsen, Senior Research Advisor to Lean Construction (Denmark), “Construction projects are in general rich in plan failure, delays, cost overruns and grief. Construction – along with most phenomena in our living world – must be perceived as a complex system, operating on the edge of chaos.” By reducing this complexity, PTG are able to mitigate the kinds of problems that can undermine and jeopardise the construction schedule.

System Solutions

PTG is also able to use its interdisciplinary structure to produce system solutions that would normally involve an architect, contractor or installer having to interact with a number of separate suppliers.

For example, in rainscreen cladding applications, PTG can bring together sheathing panels, the innovative Chi-Gasket cold-bridging solution (both from the Euroform arm of PTG) with a range of Open State Cavity Barriers from their AIM business to create an effective means of achieving compliance in relation to thermal performance and resistance to fire. PTG can also source and supply thermal insulation and high-performance cladding through their established third-party relationships and robust supply chains.

From Foundations to Fit-Out

PTG are involved at almost every stage of construction. They provide site protection from the very outset of a construction project. They supply both vibration isolation and thermal insulation for foundations. They are involved in every stage of the building envelope’s development, contributing to through-wall solutions to offer resistance to air, water, heat and noise transfer. They’re involved in HVAC solutions for both acoustic and thermal performance. They contribute to the acoustic effectiveness of wall, floors and ceilings, ensuring Part E compliance. Wherever and whenever, for example, an architectural technician finds themselves facing a challenge relating to the material performance of a building project, PTG will have, or will have access to, a solution.

The PTG Roster

PTG currently consists of nine businesses: AIM, CMS Danskin, Euroform, Mayplas, Ockwells, Central Refractories, IMS, Innogain and Insulslab. AIM is a manufacturer of mineral fibre and foam products, specialising in fire stop blocks and cavity barriers. CMS Danskin are experts in soundproofing and acoustic insulation. Euroform specialise in building boards and in ensuring fire and thermal compliance in building facades. Mayplas fabricate and supply a wide range of insulation materials, and specialise in highly bespoke cutting, lamination and encapsulation. Ockwells are a leading supplier of temporary site protection. Central Refractories, as their name suggests, a premier supplier of refractory products and services. IMS are experts in high-temperature insulation. Innogain are the innovators behind a revolutionary solution for through, anchor and precision hole-making in concrete. And, finally, Insulslab offer a complete foundation system, particularly for housing sites with difficult ground conditions.

Mark Fyfe, Group Sales and Business Development Director for Performance Technology Group, said, “We offer an industry-leading portfolio of trusted products, the interdisciplinary expertise to supply with confidence, and with an emphasis on highly bespoke fabrication and ambitious product innovation.”

The Mayor of West Midlands Andy Street, was recently taken on a guided tour of a West Midlands based modular housing company Totally Modular, which is hoping to contribute to the region’s ambitions to increase housing output.

Managing director of Totally Modular, John Connolly, and operations director, Mick Pettitt, guided the West Midlands Mayor around the company’s Cradley Heath HQ, where he was able to see a range of house types suitable for single occupants or families and met some of the skilled staff who design, construct and install them on sites around the country.

The company’s volumetric building method allows 97% of its homes to be completed offsite, before being transported to their permanent locations. It can then take as little as 48 hours from arriving on site, being put in place, and connected to utilities before welcoming its new residents.

Andy Street said: “It was great to visit Totally Modular and see first-hand their innovative house-building methods. The West Midlands Combined Authority is committed to tackling homelessness and increasing the number of homes being built in the region and it has been really helpful to talk with Totally Modular about new ways we can do this.”

The Mayor was accompanied on the visit by David Warburton, head of land and development at the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), who said: “It was of great interest to see how the company can create much-needed quality housing, suitable for a range of people, in such a short time. I think modular homes could really speed up the entire process, and should be seriously considered by all housing providers.

“The WMCA is committed to embracing the benefits of modular construction leading to an enhanced delivery in terms of speed, quality and cost with a view to making the West Midlands the epicentre of the UK’s offsite construction sector.”

Totally Modular is looking to expand its operations throughout the West Midlands, and hopes to create up to 450 jobs in each of its regional facilities, through direct employment and with local supply chain partners.

Mick Pettitt, operations director, said: “It was good to see exactly how interested and impressed our guests were. They are so obviously determined to take practical measures to address homelessness and the housing shortage, and I believe Totally Modular is in an ideal position to help.

“Because our units are built under controlled conditions, workmanship is of the highest standard, minimising the need for site inspection and virtually making redundant the dreaded ‘snagging lists’ synonymous with new housing. The speed at which we can create these homes will allow for an increase in productivity when it comes to housebuilding in the West Midlands and across the UK.

“Our link with Dudley College and local Universities is also a great way of attracting young people into the industry and helping to bridge the skills gap. By teaching them advanced modular building techniques, we can provide the foundations for a multi-skilled career within the industry at a time when this is hugely lacking. ”