Contract successes only half the story, says NFDC president

By Steve Ducker12 November 2021

The president of the United Kingdom’s National Federation of Demolition Contractors (NFDC) has called on organisations outside the industry to “provide the service that is required” now the government’s furlough scheme has ended.

Writing in the federation’s Demolition and Dismantling magazine, William Crooks - who is also the owner of the midlands-based contractor Cawarden Group - said that despite many of the NFDC’s members being as busy as ever, the industry remains affected by shortages, and not just from demolition suppliers.

William said: “Good news for most is that I am hearing from many NFDC members who are seeing a mini boom in contracts and are as busy as they have ever been.

William Crooks William Crooks, managing director Cawarden, has started a two-year term as president of the National Federation of Demolition Contractors

“However, this increase of work has highlighted shortages of skilled labour, supplies of materials, fuels and new machinery. This is not happening in our own businesses, but also the organisations we look to as contractors to expedite the contracts.

“The Civil Service, councils, utility companies, financial institutions and many other regulatory bodies have been virtually impossible to contact and have performed poorly over the last year due to their employees being placed on furlough leave, working from home or otherwise unavailable.

“This should now stop! Organisations need to step up to the mark, meet their service charters and provide the service that is required.”

William’s “President’s Page” column also reported that in the shorter term, the federation is looking into a solution where CSCS (Construction Skills Certification Scheme) cardholders can upskill to CCDO (Certificate of Competence for Demolition Operatives) labour card level on site at low cost to demolition contractors.

“Many workers are being lured away to other construction activities with promises of better things, or even out of construction altogether. 

“This would go some way to supporting the industry with the labour shortage whilst not compromising on our standards.”

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