CEF – Celebrating Excellence in Construction

Construction Employers Federation Managing Director, Mark Spence, introduces the 2021 Construction Excellence Awards…

After an absence of a year due to the pandemic, I know I speak for many across the industry who were delighted to see the return of the Construction Excellence Awards on October 7th, with our first-ever virtual awards ceremony recognising the very best that our members, subcontractors, supply chains and, crucially, their employees, have delivered on behalf of a wide range of clients across these islands.

Despite the battle with Coronavirus, the exceptionally high standard of entries for this year’s awards is a testament to the ability of local construction firms to deliver world-leading projects with the potential to benefit the wider community in Northern Ireland.
Contractors such as Ganson UK and Charles Brand won over the judges with exceptional Social/Community projects on the Lagan Gateway and Green Hill YMCA Community Hub, while Braidwater Homes, Connolly & Fee and Mascott Construction lifted awards in the Housing categories for developments that delivered world-class homes for people across NI.

Our industry’s ability to overcome the challenges presented by Covid-19 was also on full display. Health & Safety Award winners, GEDA Construction implemented procedures above government guidelines for all 125 of its staff, but also extended this focus to the wellbeing of the wider supply chain and community. Training Awards winners, Combined Facilities Management (CFM), took advantage of technology to help their team continue training throughout the pandemic, ensuring their staff and sub-contractors were equipped with the knowledge to deliver.

The Construction Excellence Awards also showcased individual and emerging talent through the Construction Person of the Year, Rising Star and Apprentice of the Year awards, which recognised how our sector would be nothing without its people. The winners of these awards, Jim Killen (Sacyr UK), Jordan Allingham (EHA Group) and Annie Crozier (Heron Bros) should be rightly proud of the recognition they have achieved.

As usual, the awards were independently judged by a panel of industry experts who agreed that to be a winner among this year’s calibre of entrants was a significant achievement. This makes the success of Woodvale Construction, who picked up an amazing four trophies in the Building in Use, Restoration, GB & Republic of Ireland Construction – above £2.5m, and Achieving Excellence in Partnering categories, all the more impressive.

Farrans Construction also celebrated 4 awards, the first two in their own right for the Health Infrastructure Award for Altnagelvin Hospital North Wing and the Commercial Construction Award for South Lake Leisure Centre. Their other two awards were as partners in the GRAHAM Farrans Construction JV for the A6 Dualling Scheme, which won the Transport and Utilities Infrastructure Award and the Overall Winner Award.

Collaboration was a recurring theme in the success of many of this year’s winning projects, and it proved to be the case also with the Overall Winner Award which was presented to GRAHAM Farrans Joint Venture for their work on the A6 Randalstown – Castledawson Dualling Scheme project. This flagship £189m scheme was described by Infrastructure Minister, Nichola Mallon, as a “project that we are rightly proud of” and one that the judging panel agreed would benefit Northern Ireland for many decades to come.

For now, all that’s left for me to say is thank you to everyone who entered and got involved in making this year’s Awards a reality. I congratulate you on your achievements and look forward to seeing you all in person next year.


Bonus Awards
• Overall Winner Award – GRAHAM Farrans Joint Venture, A6 Dualling Scheme
• Achieving Excellence in Partnering Award – Woodvale Construction – Schools 5 Bundle Completion works

Construction Person of the Year Awards
• Apprentice of the Year Award – Annie Crozier – Heron Bros
• Rising Star Award – Jordan Allingham – EHA Group
• Outstanding Contributor Award – Jim Killen – Sacyr UK

Quality Performance
• Training Award – Combined Facilities Management
• Health & Safety Award – GEDA Construction
• Environmental Sustainability Award – Dawson WAM
• Social Value Award – Combined Facilities Management – NIHE Maintenance & Improvement Contract

• Social Housing Award – Connolly & Fee – Graham Street, Lisburn
• Private Housing Award – Braidwater Homes – Birch Hill, Derry/Londonderry
• Multiple Occupancy Award – Mascott Construction (Europe) – FX Building, Belfast
• Multiple Occupancy Award – HIGHLY COMMENDED – JH Turkington & Sons – 123 York Street, Belfast

General Construction
• Commercial Construction Award, above £1m – Farrans Construction – South Lake Leisure Centre, Craigavon
• Social/Community Construction Award, below £1m – Ganson UK – Greenhill YMCA Community Hub, Newcastle
• Social/Community Construction Award, above £1m – Charles Brand – Lagan Gateway Project, Belfast
• Fit-Out Award – GRAHAM – Eagle Star House, Belfast
• Restoration Award – Woodvale Construction – St Mary’s Church, Lavey
• Building in Use Award – Woodvale Construction – Arvalee School & Resource Centre, Omagh

GB & ROI and Infrastructure
• GB & Republic of Ireland Construction Award, above £2.5m – Woodvale Construction – NDFA Schools Bundle 5, Carlow, Kells, Bray & Wexford
• GB & Republic of Ireland Construction Award, below £2.5m – J Oliver Hearty & Sons – Grange Castle Park & Castle Conservation, Dublin
• Transport and Utilities Infrastructure Award – GRAHAM Farrans Joint Venture – A6 Dualling Scheme
• Health Infrastructure Award – Farrans Construction – Altnagelvin Hospital, North Wing, Derry/Londonderry
• Education Infrastructure Award – OHMG – Southern Regional Collage, Banbridge

For more information on the Construction Employers Federation,
T: (028) 9087 7143
E: mail@cefni.co.uk