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Gold winner

Employer: ISG

Project: Wynyard Cof E Primary School, Billingham

Delays in securing the land deals required for this school new build gave Steve Laughton the headache of a site start pushed back to the middle of January rather than the beginning of the long summer holiday.

During the winter months, waterproofing and groundwater management, not to mention a major cut and fill on a sloping site, are not tasks for the easily discouraged. Steve needed determination, careful sequencing and supply chain leadership to keep the works moving. By maintaining the land drains from previous site use and forming the attenuation swales within the bulk earthworks programme, he gave himself a fighting chance of building on a dry and workable site. He also brought forward the sports field and landscaping in the programme to prevent the site becoming muck-bound.

By understanding the scope of work and practicalities, Steve was able to influence and deliver value and innovation. With the original inherited design creating an unnecessarily large void in the basement, he took 12 metres out of the retaining wall by running it in a straight line. The materials savings generated from this paid for installing a floor slab, drainage and perimeter in the area, creating an additional internal space.

He sequenced and positioned the temporary works so he could reuse the crane mat and lower site level access ramp to form the footpaths around the buildings. His instigation of further tests on the cut formation of the access road allowed a reduction in its stone fill buildup.

Not only did he complete two weeks ahead of the contract programme and in line with the budget, he handed over with zero defects. Having previously been promoted to project lead for this scheme after delivering three projects on time or better, within budget, with excellent client satisfaction and zero defects at handover, Steve has kept up his proud reputation for refusing to accept anything less than the best with another snag-free project.