Discover the Latest News on Party Promise for UK Construction, Shinfield Studios Work Completed, and Green Colar Worker

In today’s UK construction news, read about what Labour and the Lib Dems have stated in their manifestos regarding construction. Meanwhile, the largest new film and television studio in the United Kingdom, Shinfield Studios, has finished building. Lastly, insulation experts and solar and heat pump installers in London now make an average of £70 per hour, according to a recent analysis by cost consultant Turner & Townsend. This is after wages increased by 22% over the previous 12 months.

The Implications of Each Party’s Pledge for UK Construction

Original Source: General Election 2024: What each party promise means for UK construction

What have the Conservatives, Labour, and Lib Dems said about construction in their manifestos? PBC Today’s collection covers 2024 election pledges.

With Election Day less than a month away, all major parties have unveiled their 2024 manifestos.

After 14 years, 5 prime ministers, 2 recessions, and 1 Brexit, many foresee Tory candidates’ extinction. As of 13 June 2024, Electoral Calculus predicts a Labour landslide larger than Tony Blair’s 1997 election results, with the Conservatives losing roughly 300 seats.

What does it mean for UK construction?

On housing:

Conservatives

Construction of 1.6 million English dwellings in the next Parliament

“New and improved” Help to Buy

A “landlords and renters alike” tenants Reform Bill promises judicial reforms to end Section 21 evictions.

Fast-tracking city brownfield residential developments

Destroying nutrient neutrality

Making the 2022 Stamp Duty threshold permanent Labour

Building 1.5m English homes in five years

Restore mandated housing targets in the National Policy Planning Framework immediately.

Speed up approval of urban brownfield areas and prioritise the release of lower-quality ‘grey belt’ land. Implement remedies for nutrient neutrality-affected homes without compromising environmental protections.

Create a permanent, comprehensive mortgage guarantee for first-time buyers.

Eliminate Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions immediately.

Liberal Democrats

Increase UK homebuilding to 380,000 per year, including 150,000 social houses.

Remove residential leaseholds and cap ground rentals to a minimum

Immediately outlawing no-fault evictions, defaulting to three-year rentals, and creating a nationwide licenced landlord register

Introducing ‘use-it-or-lose-it’ planning permission for developers that refuse to build

Grant local governments the ability to end Green Party – Right to Buy

150,000 new social dwellings annually

Ending the ‘right to buy’ to preserve local social housing

Installing rent restrictions, a steady rental tenancy, halting no-fault evictions, and allowing tenants to demand energy efficiency improvements

Make sure all new homes satisfy Passivhaus or comparable requirements and add solar panels and heat pumps when possible.

On infrastructure

Conservatives

Fund £8.3bn pothole repairs and road resurfacing.

Adding £12bn to Liverpool-Manchester Northern Powerhouse rail projects

Labour

Combine NIC and IPA into Nista, an infrastructure body.

Improved rail connectivity in the north of England, five million potholes fixed over five years, and better prepared communities for adverse weather.

Publicise the railways

Liberal Democrats

Electric car rollout and support increase

Increased decentralisation to empower local governments to upgrade infrastructure

The Green Party

All new developments must include additional investment in local health, transport, and other services.

On energy:

Conservatives

Reach net zero by 2050

Annual North Sea oil and gas licencing rounds

Increase nuclear power with two new Small Modular Reactor fleets and Great British Nuclear

Spend £1.1bn on the Green Industries Growth Accelerator

Fracking moratorium continues

Labour

Clean energy by 2030, net zero by

Complete Hinkley Point C and expand SMRs.

Oil and gas production in the North Sea will continue despite fracking bans and coal licence bans.

Spending over £5bn on gigafactories, carbon capture, and green hydrogen

A £6.6bn Warm houses Plan to renovate 5m houses for energy efficiency and lower bills.

Liberal Democrats

A ten-year emergency upgrade initiative to make homes warmer and cheaper to heat and make all new dwellings zero-carbon.

Invest in renewable power to provide 90% of UK electricity by 2030.

Upgrade National Grid to handle rising energy demand

The Green Party

Phase out nuclear energy and suspend all new fossil fuel extraction projects in the UK, cancelling current licences like Rosebank

Remove all oil and gas subsidies

Adding a carbon fee to fossil fuel imports and extraction

Wind to generate 70% of UK electricity by 2030.

Energy storage and distribution efficiency investments

About the economy:

Conservatives

Promise to lower taxes £17.2bn by 2030

Eliminate the primary National Insurance rate by the next Parliament.

No company tax increase

Supporting small businesses with a £4.3bn business rates package over five years

Labour

Tax increases and avoidance crackdowns will raise £8.5bn annually by 2028/29.

Financial approach “that understands sustainable growth relies on a broad base and resilient foundations” is “Securonomics”.

£7.3bn National Wealth Fund aims to encourage “three pounds of private investment for every one pound of public investment” in growth and renewable energy.

Liberal Democrats

Maintaining 2% inflation and Bank of England independence

Reverse the Conservatives’ tax breaks for big banks and tax oil and gas producers and traders’ super-profits once.

Lower income tax (“when the public finances allow”) by raising the tax-free personal allowance.

The Green Party

£40bn per year to transition to a green economy over the next Parliament

Completed Work at Shinfield Studios

Original Source: Shinfield Studios fully operational after work completed

Shinfield Studios, the UK’s largest new film and TV studio, is finished. The 18 soundstages, including two of the UK’s largest at 43,000 sq.ft., are now functioning at the modern location.

Shinfield Studios opened in phases during the past two years within the University of Reading’s Thames Valley Science Park.

It has hosted Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire and others.

Nick Smith, Shinfield Studios Joint Managing Director, said: “Shinfield Studios is complete. We created one of the world’s most advanced studios from scratch to attract the most ambitious and expensive productions. With Shinfield Studios now open, Berkshire will see many more stunning feature films and high-end television series.”

Training future filmmakers

Reading University, Shinfield Studios, Slough-based Resource Productions, and Bedlam Productions are important partners in ‘Screen Berkshire’, a BFI-funded training programme to fill skills gaps and boost diversity in the film industry.

Dr. Dominic Lees, associate professor of filmmaking at Reading, said: “Shinefield Studios’ completion will boost film and TV production in Berkshire, creating more jobs and traineeships for University students and graduates.  

“There is a big need for skills training, which the University is providing through its film and television courses and through partnership with industry-leading producers and film companies.”

Shinfield Studios has 18 sound stages from 17,000 to 43,000 sq. ft., including the two largest, fully climate-controlled soundstages at 43,000 sq. A nine-acre movie backlot, 38 workshops, and modern office space are also on site.

The design prioritises accessibility and sustainability.  Every stage and office has accessible facilities. The complex also has air source heat pumps, solar panels, and electric vehicle charging spots.

Shinfield Studios Joint Managing Director Ian Johnson said, “Our vision was to build a studio that fulfilled every need of today’s productions, including supporting industry efforts to improve sustainability and accessibility for all. We are so thankful to Wokingham Borough Council, the University of Reading, and the community for helping us realise that ambition.

We at Shinfield Studios also wanted to help develop the next generation of producers. We’re happy to be founding members of Screen Berkshire, which trains, upskills, and supports local crew to find jobs.

“Green collar” Workers in Construction Making £134,00

Original Source: ‘Green collar’ construction workers earning £134,000

Lack of ‘green collar’ construction workers is driving up wages and potentially derail the country’s net zero energy efficiency goal.

Cost consultant Turner & Townsend found that insulation specialists and solar and heat pump installers in London now earn £70 per hour, up 22% in a year.

According to the cost consultant, some in-demand trades can now earn almost £134,000 in the capital on a 48-hour week.

These trades, which are leading the energy revolution, earn 2.5 times more than capital construction labourers, who make £28 per hour.

T&T warns that a shortage of skilled construction workers is driving pay inflation to record highs in all UK regions.

The average UK wage for these specialists is £47 per hour outside London.

Skills shortages were identified in all nine regions, with 78% indicating they are already affecting programmes.

Low-carbon development is not immune to labour cost increases and skills shortages.

Since 2023, average construction wages have risen 13% to £42 per hour in 2024.

London is the 10th most costly building market worldwide, up from 14th in 2023.

This has raised average construction prices in the capital across 11 building types to £3,503 per m2 from £3,024 in 2023.

Turner & Townsend managing director of UK real estate Chris Sargent said: “Hundreds of thousands of new trained specialists are needed to give the sector the capacity it needs for the green transition.

The role may appeal to many and attract these needed abilities with high remuneration.

“But green construction cannot afford to be priced separately from traditional work.

We must invest today in establishing and educating the pipeline of talented personnel we need and use innovative digital solutions to increase productivity and outcomes to make net zero realistic and cheap.’

Summary of today’s construction news

In summary, the major parties have finally issued their manifestos for the 2024 election, with polling day less than a month away. A lot of people are forecasting that Tory candidates would lose handily after 14 years, 5 prime ministers, 2 recessions, and 1 Brexit.

Meanwhile, Shinfield Studios, located at the Thames Valley Science Park at the University of Reading, has been open for business for the last two years in stages. It has already accepted productions throughout that time, such as Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire, which was just launched.

Lastly, London moved up from 14th place in 2023 to the 10th most expensive construction market in the world. As a result, the average cost of construction in the capital for a wide range of 11 building types has increased to £3,503 per m2 from £3,024 per m2 in 2023.

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