The Construction Leadership Council states in its National Retrofit Strategy that:

‘Our homes use 35% of all the energy in the UK and emit 20% of the carbon dioxide emissions. If the UK Government is to deliver its targets of a 78% emissions reduction by 2035, and net zero by 2050, household emissions need to be addressed.’

It was with this in mind that the FMB London Region decided that retrofit needed to be the topic for our first London Business Forum and our first physical event since the pandemic began.

This event was designed to bring together builders and retrofit professionals to discuss the topic and, for those members who don’t have any experience in the field, to get an understanding of how they can begin to develop their business with retrofit in mind.

FMB members Networking at the London Business Forum

FMB members from the London and Southern region arrive at the London Business Forum, held at Tower Suites.

Starting your retrofit journey

The day began with a presentation from Nik Nelberg on the project that won him the London Master Builder Award for sustainability. The key takeaway from Nik’s speech was that although he won the award, he is still learning each day. Retrofit shouldn’t be feared but embraced step by step.

FMB member Nik Nelberg of Earl and Calam Design & Build and Carl Licorish from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).

FMB member Nik Nelberg of Earl and Calam Design & Build Ltd talks to Carl Licorish from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).

The second presentation was from Russell Smith at Parity Projects who spoke about the immediate need to improve our current housing stock. Russell explained that ‘due to increasing fuel costs 27 million people will need to choose between heating or food by 2024’.

Russell Smith of Parity Projects talks at the FMB's London Business Forum

Russell Smith, Founder of Parity Projects and Retrofit Works, uses housing data and analytics to demonstrate the opportunity that retrofit offers to SME builders.

Masterclasses in energy efficient building

The second half of the day was comprised of masterclass discussion groups, hosted by experts in each of the following topics:

  • What training should you consider? - Lucy Pedler, Director, The Green Register
  • Heat pumps and modern heating systems - Jonathan Prescott, National Installer Sales Manager, Mitsubishi Electric
  • Insulation: How to help your client make their house more thermally efficient - Nik Nelberg, Managing Director, Earl & Calam Design & Build Ltd
Lucy Pedler from The Green Register

Lucy Pedler from The Green Register talked retrofit training opportunities with FMB members at the London region event.

It’s safe to say the event was a huge success with members keen to develop what they had learnt on future projects.

The London Region is keen to ensure events like these continue to provide both educational value as well as an opportunity to meet fellow members and discuss how we can all work together to ensure SME builders not only survive this challenging landscape but thrive well into the future.

Drinks reception at London Business Forum

The day ended on a high note – taking to the rooftops of London for a drink reception and a chance to connect with fellow FMB members.

Our sponsor for this event was TradePoint. Exhibitors included CITBEEBS CIS Payroll and Buildxact

Join us for more events in your region and beyond

Our FMB member events take place regularly, both online and in-person. As an FMB member, you can access expert advice on subjects that can help your business thrive, as well as be part of a community of likeminded SME builders to help you build your network.

Take a look at what’s coming up on our events page or find out more about becoming a member of the FMB today.

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Sam Eden

Sam Eden

London Director, Federation of Master Builders

Sam brings his vast experience working within the energy and finance sectors, most recently working for the Architecture Registration Board. At the FMB Sam’s responsibilities cover membership engagement, public affairs, media relations, events and governance but predominantly he is the representative for FMB members within the capital and greater London working with policy makers and stakeholders to ensure SME builders are represented.