Top ten unmissable highlights of the UK’s largest construction event

Published:  05 October, 2018

With only days to go until the premier built environment event kicks off, it really is last chance saloon for construction professionals wanting to sign up and take advantage of everything that’s on offer at UK Construction Week.

So, if you’re still holding onto your RSVP, here are the top ten unmissable highlights to sway your decision to spend 9–11 October with 35,000 other construction professionals, at Birmingham’s NEC.

1. Journeying around the world

Take a trip around the globe without worrying about weight restrictions or sun cream. Over 650 national and international exhibitors are taking to the exhibitor halls with more products than any other show. With over 100 exclusive product launches, covering innovations in offsite construction; doors; windows and glass; roofing, cladding and insulation; and tools health and safety, visitors really will be at the cutting-edge of global innovations.

2. Expecting the unexpected

Sure, you could leave the future of the industry as a surprise but where’s the business sense in that? The UKCW stages have the knowledge, insights and debates to help prepare for tomorrow. Attend provocative discussions on stopping building failures, political correctness gone mad and addressing the skills crisis. Or, for the more thrill-seeking visitors, find out what it takes to build constructions in Antarctica, learn how to design your way out of natural disasters and discover what the UK’s infrastructure holds post-Brexit.

3. Shows within shows

UKCW is the perfect opportunity to kill numerous shows with one show, with Build Show, Energy 2018, Timber Expo, Building Tech Live, Surface & Materials Show, HVAC 2018, Civils Expo, Plant and Machinery Live, and Grand Designs Live all taking place. And, there’s more including the Midlands Construction Summit, BMF Young Merchants Conference, IEMA – Sustainable Construction Conference, BRE Academy CPD programme and MaterialDistrict Expo.

4. Ground breaking innovations

A show-stealing highlight is the Innovation Trail. The self-guided journey through the industry’s most pioneering products, solutions and technologies is enough to prepare anyone for the future. Speaking of the future, the Future of Construction Hub transports visitors to a dimension of 3D printing, robotics, AI, AR and modern methods of construction. Experience life as a site manager in Coventry University’s construction simulator before listening to Birmingham City University’s latest research work.

5. The UK’s biggest offsite showcase

It’s no secret that offsite construction will dominate in the coming years and that’s why it’s dominating UKCW. The dedicated Offsite Theatre is adjoined to a two-storey residential and student apartment and an upmarket hotel bathroom POD before they set off for their forever homes. Inspired visitors can learn how to develop an offsite strategy before hitting the Offsite section to source the companies and solutions to help.

6. Interactive CPDs and workshops

Keeping on top of CPD needn’t be a drag with over 35 fun and interactive workshops. Reach new heights safely at the Access Industry Forum Working at Height hub, make time for timber at CTI workshops, and learn from other industry experts including the British Woodworking Federation, Passivhaus and BBA. Pre-booking is essential.

7. Live constructions and sculptures

The beauty of working in construction is seeing ideas come to life and UKCW is no exception. Experience Kintech Design’s Royal Approval, a sculpture merging kinetic art, light and Japanese paper folding. See how Carwyn Lloyd Jones met his challenge of designing and building a tiny timber frame house using only natural materials such as hempcrete and cob wailing. And, revel at the #Make:it_Brum winning design concept that’s being transformed into reality as it becomes its own UKCW pavilion.

8. Networking with the best of them

With more than 35,000 expected visitors, UKCW will be a hotbed of networking activity and deals. Visit the IEMA networking area, deliver a 60-second pitch at the PBLINK construction networking group, take a break at the CTI members’ networking lunch, meet fellow superheroes at the Institute of Civil Engineers’ Save Civil City challenge and battle your competition at KwikFit Fleet’s VR race simulator.

9. Glass-raising celebrations

There’s plenty of reasons to pop the fizz at award and competition announcements. Find out the Construction Enquirer Awards and Voltimum Smart Solutions Awards winners; see the winning #iBuiltThis2018 photograph entry; applaud the CTI’s 2018 students; and don’t forget the UKCW role model of the year announcement on 10 October.

10. Beers, fizz and gin

After whetting your appetite at Toby Jeavons and Paul Edward’s talk on Macallan Distillery in Inverness, you can grab a pint (or gin) at the Elliott Group Central Bar in Hall 11 or the Germany Trade and Invest Timber Bar Hall 9. Or, for a livelier atmosphere, the UKCW Beer Festival, sponsored by Velux, is serving an array of drinks and street food, alongside live music from Fix Radio and you. Rockaoke is providing Wednesday night revellers with the chance to take to the stage with a live rock band. The perfect way to wind down after a successful day.

Last minute tickets are still available via the website www.ukconstructionweek.com and updates are available on the website and Twitter at @UK_CW or using the hashtag #UKCW2018.

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