The next generation of builders’ merchants and construction industry professionals were celebrated at a prestigious City & Awards luncheon on 21st March, 2023, organised by Worshipful Company of Builders’ Merchants (WCoBM).
The event took place at the magnificent Grade II-listed Fishmongers’ Hall in the City of London, where Liverymen and Freemen of WCoBM, as well as distinguished guests and representatives from industry and affiliated organisations, gathered to network and celebrate the next generation of young people.
Now in its 11th year, the WCoBM City & Awards luncheon highlights the achievements of individuals within the merchant industry, as well within organisations the Company supports in training and education through its charitable fund.
The event also recognises wider industry achievements around environmental best practice, through its ‘Caring for the Environment’ award, and the coveted Master’s award.
Members who attend the event can invite ‘rising stars’ from their own businesses, giving them the opportunity to learn more about the City Livery Companies and to network with senior figures from the industry.
This year’s Award winners included students from the Builders’ Merchants Federation (BMF) and the City & Guilds of London Art School. An award was also presented to members of the Youth Allowed Club (YAC), a group of young people with additional needs, who received the Build Up Foundation Leadership Award for Design and Construction. The Build Up Foundation puts young people in control of construction projects that make a lasting contribution to their local community.
Organisations affiliated with WCoBM were also present to receive awards, namely individuals from HMS Forth, the 3rd Battalion, Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment (PWRR), the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, and the Beckenham and Penge Sea Cadets.
BMF student winners were: Hannah McBride, awarded Best BMF Online Student; Adam Ledger, awarded Best Performing BMF Diploma Student; and Jordan Harrington, who was named Best Performing BMF Apprentice of the Year.
The ‘Caring for the Environment’ award acknowledges companies or individuals represented in the Livery who have gone above and beyond in the areas of waste management, manufacturing processes, packaging or product development to ensure greater sustainability or resource efficiency. The winner this year was Hanson UK, for its work ensuring carbon and waste reduction in its cement manufacturing processes.
Prizes were presented by Guest of Honour Alderman Sir Andrew Parmley, KStJ, past Lord Mayor of London (2016-17) and an Honorary Liveryman of the Company. During his speech, Sir Andrew emphasised the importance of builders’ merchants in creating a legacy of buildings and structures for the future.
Sir Andrew said “We are here to celebrate success and I have been delighted to meet so many rising stars among the guests. Builders’ merchants are the unsung heroes of the industry. As you walk around London, you can marvel at the magnificent structures that your ancestors created and be proud. The rising stars we celebrate today will have lots of opportunity to make their mark on the future.”
The 2023 Master’s Award was presented to Past Master Steve Turner for his work promoting WCoBM in the City, as well as his involvement in the No Going Back Pan-Livery initiative, which works with Bounce Back to provide training, support, employment and housing to prison leavers. The initiative is funded and driven by Livery Companies with job opportunities offered through their members.
WCoBM Master Richard Hill said “It is a great pleasure to be able to welcome so many of our industry’s rising stars to today’s event in recognition of all their hard work and achievements, as well as those of the winners from our valued affiliated organisations. I am also thrilled to be able to present Past Master Steve Turner with an award. For years he has been making a persistent effort to help others through the No Going Back initiative, simply because it is the right thing to do.”