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+13% Increase in project starts during the three months to May
+28% Rise in the value of main contract awards during the three months to May

The flow of work on-site grew during the three months to May and a strengthening pipeline points to further growth over the coming months.

The value of projects starting on-site averaged £5,395 million per month during the three months to May; a 5% rise against the preceding three months and 49% higher than the lockdown disrupted period a year ago.

The rise against the preceding three months was due to a 7% increase against the previous three months in the value of major projects starting on-site. At an average of £1,232 million a month, major projects were also 6% higher than a year ago. At £4,163 million per month the average value of underlying projects (under £100m) was 20% up on the previous three months on a seasonally adjusted basis and 70% higher than a year ago.

The value of contract awards rose 8% against the preceding three months to stand 77% up on a year ago and 8% above the same period in 2019. Major contract awards slipped by 11% during the three months to May but were more than double (101% up) on a year ago. Underlying contract awards increased by 15% (seasonally adjusted) on the preceding three months to stand 71% higher than a year ago.

After recent strong growth the value of work securing detailed planning consent during the three months to May dropped by 11% against the preceding three months but was unchanged compared with a year ago. The decline was due to a drop in the value of major projects securing planning approval, which declined by 50% against the preceding three months and was 52% lower than a year ago. In contrast the value of underlying detailed planning approvals grew robustly, rising by 8% against the preceding three months (seasonally adjusted) to stand 39% up on a year ago.

Construction Activity

 

The value of work on-site rose during the first quarter of the year, according to the latest official data from ONS, with output rising by 2.6% against the preceding three months although it was 1.2% down on a year earlier. An increase in the value of projects starting on-site is expected to sustain further output growth over the course of 2021.

Overall repair and maintenance output rose 3.3% during the three months to March and was 6.8% ahead of a year ago. Private housing RM&I output has been especially buoyant, rising by 3.1 % during the quarter and being 11.3% up on a year ago.

New build output rose 2.8% against the previous three months but was 5.3% lower than a year ago. Commercial output grew by 3% during the quarter but remained 14% down on a year ago. Industrial sector activity fell back after strong growth last autumn, with output 10% down on the preceding three months and 28% lower than a year ago.

New public non-residential output rose by 2% but was 3% lower than a year ago.
Private new housing output grew by 3% but was 1% down on a year ago. Social new housing output also grew, rising by 10% against the preceding three months but was 16% lower than a year ago.
Infrastructure has been the strongest performing new work sector, rising by 4% against the preceding three months to stand 8% up on a year ago.

Glenigan customers can see the trends driving the construction industry's recovery if part of their subscription.

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PR contact:
Rick Stephens (Content Marketing Lead)
T: 01202 786 859 │ E: rick.stephens@glenigan.com