The past month has been a busy time for FMB Scotland with issues such as the building materials shortages and skills shortages continuing to be top of the agenda for members. In addition to this, in the past month we were also able to celebrate exceptional projects by Scottish members through the Master Builder Awards.

Meeting an award-winning Scottish builder

The pandemic, social distancing, and the huge rise in the use of virtual meetings via Teams or Zoom has meant that I haven’t been able to meet many FMB members face to face over the last 18 months.

Earlier this year, Ross Booth from Coldwells Building Company: the Scotland winner of the Medium Renovation Project category in the Master Builder Awards, invited me to meet him in Aberdeenshire when the opportunity arose. In September on a short family break to Strathdon in Aberdeenshire, I took the opportunity to meet Ross and find out more about his business at Cornival Cottage, which was the winning project delivered by Coldwells.

Coldwells Building Company, Scotland.jpg

Now this was only one week before the Master Builder Awards finals. When I met Ross, I had no idea if the Cornival Cottage project would be selected as an overall winner at the finals. So I was delighted to learn that this project was indeed the overall winner of the Medium Renovation Project award.

Congratulations to Ross and the team at Coldwells Building company for beating off stiff competition from the regional award winners across England, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

Sharing your experiences with politicians

It is through engaging with members in Scotland that I am able to stay up to date with the issues that matter to you. Influencing politicians and policy makers in Scotland, is a key function of my role given that skills, apprenticeships, housing, building standards and planning are all devolved to the Scottish Parliament.

In the past month I have worked on re-registering the Cross-Party Group on Construction at the Scottish Parliament. This forum helps the FMB to voice issues on behalf of members to MSPs. On Friday 15 October, I met Paul McLennan MSP who has become the Deputy Convener of this group. In our meeting, I raised concerns around the skills shortages and the ongoing materials crisis and its impact on local building firms, and we also discussed the FMB’s campaign to licence construction firms.

Promoting construction skills and training

On Wednesday 6 October, Sandy McGillvray from the CITB provided an update to FMB Scotland Board members on the current challenges with delivering apprenticeship training in Scotland’s colleges. Find out more about the construction skills shortage in Scotland.

CITB are also on the lookout for individuals to act as the face of our industry for young people, inspiring them to consider a career in Construction and the Built Environment through sharing their own experiences. Some FMB members are already Go Construct STEM ambassadors and are helping to change perceptions about a career in the industry. I encourage members in Scotland to find out more about Go Construct and apply.

Did you know that Scotland’s Heat in Buildings Strategy was recently published?

At the FMB we have long argued that a fabric first approach should be taken to help reduce the overall energy demand from our homes. There are encouraging elements to the published Heat in Buildings Strategy and we continue to press that local, small building firms are ideally placed to deliver the appropriate green upgrades to homes across Scotland. The strategy was published on 7 October, and we issued a press release commenting on the strategy.

Upcoming projects / Zoom in

We run informal virtual meetings for Scotland members on the last Wednesday of every month. This is an opportunity for you to network with other members and voice your concerns and ideas. Join us on Wednesday 27th October at 16.30.

Get in touch

Got a question?

Contact Gordon Nelson, Scotland Director on 07769 687 232 or email.

Email Gordon


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