Construction industry of the United Kingdom

The construction industry of the United Kingdom contributed gross value of £64,747 million to the UK economy in 2004.[1] The industry employed around 2.2 million people in the fourth quarter of 2009.[2] There were around 194,000 construction firms in Great Britain in 2009, of which around 75,400 employed just one person and 62 employed over 1,200 people.[2] In 2009 the construction industry in Great Britain received total orders of around £18.7 billion from the private sector and £15.1 billion from the public sector.[2] While manufacturing in the United Kingdom shrank as a proportion of the economy between 1948 and 2013, replaced by the service sector, construction remained relatively flat at about 6% of the economy.[3] In 2013 the government unveiled the Construction 2025 industrial strategy.[4]

As of 2012, the largest construction project in the UK is Crossrail. Due to open in 2018, it will be a new railway line running east to west through London and into the surrounding counties with a branch to Heathrow Airport.[5] The main feature of the project is construction of 42 km (26 mi) of new tunnels connecting stations in central London. It is also Europe's biggest construction project with a £15 billion projected cost.[6][7]

Prospective major construction projects include either expansion of London Heathrow Airport or expansion of Gatwick Airport, construction of the High Speed 2 rail line between London and the West Midlands, and construction of the Crossrail 2 rail line in London.

The industry was pushed into a period of turmoil following the Brexit vote in June 2016. Fears of a lack of EU labour post-Brexit were cited as a key reason for the uncertainty. [8][9][10] Despite this, the industry has been performing better than expected in the months since, leading to cautious optimism in some quarters. [11][12]

See also


  1. "United Kingdom National Accounts The Blue Book 2006" (PDF). 22 August 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 29 October 2008. Retrieved 29 November 2008.
  2. "Construction Statistics Annual 2010" (PDF). Office for National Statistics. Archived from the original (PDF) on 29 June 2011. Retrieved 30 October 2010.
  3. "Seven things you need to know about the UK economy". The Guardian. 24 April 2014. Retrieved 14 June 2015.
  4. "Construction 2025" (PDF). HM Government. Retrieved 10 December 2017.
  5. "Crossrail Regional Map". Crossrail Ltd. Retrieved 8 September 2013.
  6. "Crossrail's giant tunnelling machines unveiled". BBC News. 2 January 2012.
  7. Leftly, Mark (29 August 2010). "Crossrail delayed to save £1bn". The Independent on Sunday. London.
  8. correspondent, Phillip Inman Economics (4 July 2016). "Construction becomes first casualty of Brexit as housebuilders get jitters". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  9. "Brexit vote sparks biggest plunge in construction since the financial crisis". The Independent. 2 August 2016. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  10. ""Brexit could worsen construction skills crisis"". ITV News. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  11. "Construction activity hit a four-month high in April". The Independent. 3 May 2017. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  12. "Construction & Manufacturing enjoy growth in uncertain times | Resapol". Resapol. 16 March 2017. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
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