An article from Construction Industry News June 2015 addition
With over 30 years’ experience under belt Spalding-based D Brown Building Contractors Ltd has the expertise to provide everything from new build through to general repairs and refurbishments to an extremely high standard. This reputation for quality was once again recently highlighted when it was shortlisted at the UK Housing Awards 2015 within the Outstanding Development of the Year (Up to 24 Homes) category for its work for a project for North Kesteven District Council.
“The project involved the development of 13 houses in Northfield Crescent, Ruskington, and took around a year to complete,” explains Kurt Mason, Financial Director. “It’s fairly typical of the work we carry out and the standards we operate to so to be shortlisted for a national award was fantastic. We’ve had previous award recognition, all of which is really pleasing, especially considering we’re a relatively small Lincolnshire company. As for the reasons behind this consistency, it’s really testament to our team and our ability to fulfil the client’s brief in their area of need.”
The UK Housing Awards, which recognise outstanding work by housing organisations to improve the lives of people in their communities, are organised by the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH). Now in their 19th year, this year’s awards attracted more than 250 entries from all over the UK.
D Brown just missed out with the winners being revealed at a ceremony at the Lancaster London Hotel on 21 April and writer, actress, TV presenter and comedian Sandi Toksvig presented the awards. CIH Interim Chief Executive, Gavin Smart, said: “The UK Housing Awards recognise the great work being done by housing professionals and organisations across the industry, but they also push us all to do better as a sector. We hope the achievements of our finalists will inspire others as they aim to provide the best possible services for residents and communities. Congratulations to all of the organisations that have been shortlisted, win or lose your work will help inspire us all to improve.”
Operating since 1983 D Brown has 38 employees and remains a privately run company turning over around £11m a year and covering private build, social housing, Decent Homes work, speculative housing, school refurbishment and general building works. Geographically its sphere of operation tends to stem from Nottingham to the North, Norwich in the East, Cambridge to the South and Northampton to the West.
As it looks to build on its already impressive reputation, D Brown is now looking to capitalise further on the growth within the social housing sector, although it remains conscious of the challenges it is continuing to have to contend with. “To be truthful the hurdles we face aren’t unique to us as the situation’s the same industry-wide and are mainly centred on the limited availability of both labour and materials, together with the rising cost of both,” says Mr Mason. “The materials shortage is a national problem so it’s a case of being more innovative when it comes to design and using more readily available materials. We also have well developed links with our supply chain, which also helps greatly. From a labour perspective, meanwhile, we work extremely hard to develop our own people so they reach their full potential and we’re less reliant on recruitment.”
With its well-developed infrastructure and extensive experience it is clear that D Brown will be continuing to develop its reputation in the months and years ahead, whilst further award recognition wouldn’t be a surprise either.