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UK Construction Week launches sustainability challenge

UK Construction Week London has teamed up once again with Construction Sport – in the form of a boating regatta with a difference.

The challenge aims to show how team sports can help improve the mental health of those working in the construction industry, where work characterised by limited-term contracts, long hours, long commutes, time away from family and the pressure to complete on time and within budget can negatively impact mental wellbeing.

Working with London’s Royal Docks and waste management and recycling service provider Powerday, four teams will be invited to build a vessel from construction waste materials, with the aim to race across Royal Victoria Dock on the opening morning of UK Construction Week London, Tuesday 2nd May.

As well as earning respect and plaudits from their peers, the winning team will also open the show alongside George Clarke and a host of industry movers and shakers.

Nathan Garnett, UKCW event director, commented:  “Working collaboratively, the teams will highlight one of Construction Sport’s key aims – showing how team sports and activities can improve the day-to-day mental health of construction workers.

“Not only that, but by using waste materials from Powerday’s Waste Management centres, the teams will be able to illustrate how the sector is taking sustainability to heart.”

Steve Kerslake, founder, Construction Sport, added: “For us, construction is all about teamwork, passion and camaraderie. As an industry we build for the future, the future of our environment, the future of our community and the future of our workforce. The UKCW London Sustainable Vessel Challenge has it all!”

The winning boat will be on display at UK Construction Week London, the UK’s biggest trade show for the construction Industry. This year’s regatta follows on from last year’s overnight mission to walk from Twickenham to ExCeL London to open UK Construction Week.

Walking the route of the Thames Tideway, Steve Kerslake and his team from Construction Sport were followed by “This is England”, the BBC documentary that focused on the mental health challenges faced by construction workers – and the work Construction Sport and others are doing in this space to help.

UKCW London, which runs from May 2-4, will feature sessions and seminars led by industry experts across the show’s six stages; the show will feature an incredible 300 speakers, with over 150 hours of CPD seminars available

Visitors will also be able to find sections dedicated to Digital Construction, Infrastructure, Offsite, Surfaces, Net Zero including Renewables, HVAC, Energy Management; Build Show including Roofing, Cladding and Insulation; Tools; Health & Safety; Fire Prevention; Future Lab; and a Careers Trail.

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In 2016, architect and TV presenter Kevin McCloud sailed to the Grand Designs Live show at ExCeL in a houseboat made entirely of cardboard; for this year's UKCW London challenge, teams must build a similar vessel.

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About UKCW Organised by Media 10 – the multi award-winning events and publishing company, UK Construction Week (UKCW) is the UK’s largest built environment event. Running twice per year in London (2-4 May 2023, Excel London) and Birmingham (3-5 October 2023, NEC Birmingham), the event attracts an engaged audience from all sectors of the construction industry to share knowledge, solve problems, and explore new, sustainable ways of working. UKCW also plays host to 100s of companies showcasing their latest innovation, products and services. For stand and sponsorship enquiries visit Social Media Twitter:@UK_CW Instagram: @uk_cw Facebook: LinkedIn: #UKCW2023 About Construction Sport Construction Sport is a charity founded by experienced construction operatives, dedicated to improving the lives of our workers. Within construction our physical health and safety has been prioritised; health and safety protocols have been a success, but that’s just half the battle. Hours up hours are invested in on-site and off-site training. We have regular updates regarding safety briefings, safety alerts, near misses, lessons learnt, working at height, people plant interface and an endless plethora of information and rules to ensure everyone remains safe. Yet little, if anything is communicated about our mental health. So, we decided to use sport as the conduit for change. Most people enjoy watching or taking part in sport and appreciate the health benefits it provides; it makes sense. At Construction Sport we are bringing the industry together, promoting the huge benefits that sport can have on driving positive change into our industry. We have got to make a stand, we have got to come together, the shocking statistics are not acceptable. Together we can make a difference. About Powerday Powerday is an independent family business providing responsible waste management services to help our clients manage their resources sustainably. We are proud of our role in helping reduce the environmental impact of the UK waste and of using our sustained growth to support our local communities. Powerday provides market-leading waste management services to construction and demolition companies, local authorities and commercial businesses operating in London and across the UK. With six sites across North, South, East and West London, we also provide local skip hire services to householders, builders and other businesses looking for competitively priced skips in the vicinity as well as third party tipping for licensed waste carriers. Our well-maintained, tracked fleet of over 90 Euro 6 and ULEZ compliant vehicles are working across the Capital 7 days a week. We deal with waste safely, efficiently and compliantly delivering sustainable solutions for all our clients. We operate the largest Materials Recycling Facilities (MRFs) in Southern England from sites in Willesden Junction, Enfield and Canning Town which are supported by waste transfer stations in Brixton, Heathrow and Wimbledon. Combined, these facilities are licensed to process over 3.5 million tonnes of waste each year.

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