Edinburgh based City Access Scaffolding is celebrating its double success at a major industry awards event in Wales.
The firm took home two of the coveted trophies at the NASC Awards 2021, beating 72 entries from across the UK to win both the Apprentice of the Year award and the Health & Safety Award for firms with fewer than 66 employees.
Established in 2014, City Access Scaffolding (CAS) has grown rapidly, earning a reputation for professionalism and reliability. The firm has secured several significant projects recently, including Edinburgh’s new Gleneagles Townhouse, intricate work on Scottish Government headquarters at St Andrews House and a Historic Environment Scotland contract to provide scaffolding services for sites including the iconic Edinburgh Castle.
Recognising that they operate within a high-risk sector, the company has always placed health and safety at the heart of operations, ensuring that teams and projects are run safely, and with an eye on consistent improvement.
In common with other industries, construction was heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. CAS developed a way of working in line with social distancing measures, allowing the team to continue to erect scaffolding safely while adhering to government requirements. A video produced to demonstrate this to their operatives was picked up by a client, global construction specialists ISG Plc and shared to their subcontractors nationally.
Alongside steps to prevent physical injury and death, CAS has long been a champion for mental health among its workforce, mindful of the fact that suicide is the biggest killer of men aged 20-49. CAS Performance Director Kirsty Allan has built a strong relationship with the Joshua Nolan Foundation, with the firm fundraising over £2000 for the Edinburgh-based charity.
All CAS staff are encouraged to reach out if they require support, and through this initiative, several members of the team have been connected with trained counsellors on programmes that develop strategies with the individual to cope with thoughts of suicide or self-harm. The company also offers all staff an 8-week mindfulness course delivered by skilled practitioners from The Mindful Enterprise.
Commenting on the award, CAS QHSE Manager Ryan Scott said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have won this NASC Health & Safety Award. There’s nothing more important to us than ensuring that we can work safely on-site, while also caring for our employee’s wellbeing in a much wider sense. We have close relationships with various services locally and we’ll always act as a link to help staff get any help they need.
We look at well-being in a really holistic way, including putting a partnership in place with Capital Credit Union which offers our team a structured way to save money from their weekly wage. All of these things add up to a happier and healthier workforce which is the best way for us to continue to grow in a way that we can be genuinely proud of.”
The second award of the night recognised one of the newer recruits to the CAS team, Adam McLennan, as NASC Apprentice of the Year 2021. NASC judges noted that 22-year-old Adam’s entry stood out in a field of high-calibre submissions, with his work ethic, initiative and selfless attitude shining through.
Commenting on the award, CAS Performance Director Kirsty Allan said: “Adam is organised, efficient and an absolute credit to City Access Scaffolding. He has made a material contribution to the company over a very challenging time for everyone and we couldn’t be prouder of him.
We’re looking forward to watching him progress within the industry and are sure he has a bright future ahead of him.”
“Not only do we want to help our 8 apprentices to become the best scaffolders they can, be but we also work closely with them all to help navigate their personal lives and development. If people feel happy, safe and supported at work they’ll be more productive and effective so it’s something we take very seriously. We’re excited about what the future holds for City Access Scaffolding and can’t wait to see how our team members continue to grow personally and professionally.”
The 2021 NASC Awards took place at Celtic Manor Resort, Newport, on Friday 19 November 2021, hosted by stand-up comedian Jimmy Carr, and recognised the very best of the UK’s scaffolding industry, marking achievements in seven categories. From a long list of 72 entries, the winners, runners up and highly commended submissions were revealed in front of a packed ballroom of more than 550 guests.