Issue 14 features the very latest news, projects, views and insight from the scaffolding industry.
Over the last few months Scaffmag has reported much about material shortages and inflated prices within our industry, unfortunately, things have got significantly worse. Now a major labour and HGV driver shortage is creating a ‘perfect storm’ and impacting business operations across the whole of the construction industry.
According to a recent survey by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) found that the shortage of scaffolders and other tradespeople is suffocating growth for the UK which they fear could last for years to come (See Page 6). Scaffolding trade association, the National Access and Scaffolding Confederation (NASC) has said it recognises that overcoming labour shortages both now and in the medium-term presents a huge challenge. But it’s nothing new. The need to address the skills gap within the scaffolding industry has been understood by our sector for some time. This is for several reasons, but some believe the introduction of the controversial CISRS CPD course in 2017 has also had a negative impact, widening the skills gap further with many reports of scaffolders not continuing in the trade for financial reasons.
So how do we solve the skills gap issue and attract new people into scaffolding? (On page 30) the NASC outlines a number of initiatives that it hope will address the problem head-on and raise awareness of the variety of scaffolding career opportunities available for many job seekers and school leavers. Meanwhile (On Page 18) Billy Jones of Millcroft discusses why the right training and collaborative approach are critical to the delivery of rail projects.
Elsewhere in this edition of Scaffmag, Karl Christy, Founder of D&A Confidential investigates why many scaffolders think drug and alcohol misuse is acceptable and is there a way to tackle the culture? (See Page 36).
Turning to our Projects section and gracing the cover of this issue is Lyndon SGB’s Manchester Town Hall project. I was invited to this magnificent structure that is said to be the largest commercial scaffolding project and one of the most prestigious renovation schemes in the country. Read my report (On Page 52).
Happy reading and stay safe!
Daniel Norton – Editor