The first IDE North West regional meeting since the COVID Pandemic struck the UK was held on Thursday 07 October 2021 at the Canalside Conference Centre at Middlewich.

The meeting was sponsored by Sean Heron of Worsley Plant and organised by JBV Demolition Limited and C&D Demolition Consultants Limited The IDE Council of Management gave their thanks to all for their hard work in organizing the event.

Over 35 delegates met at Worsley Plant approximately 100 metres from the Conference Centre where they were shown the vast array of demolition attachments supplied by Worsley including Rotar Shears and Pulverisors, Lenhoff Quick Couplers, Dynaset Magnets, Montabert Breakers and Remu Screening Buckets. In attendance was a new Bradley Group owned CAT demolition machine, fitted with a Rotar shear, that featured the new generation of fuel-efficient engine.

Following the plant walk round the delegates moved into the workshop area for a presentation by Paul Johnson of Bradley Group, previously delivered to the NFDC North West Region earlier in the month, entitled “Race to Net Zero – 2025”

Paul’s presentation encouraged everyone to sign the Net Zero Pledge and start to reduce carbon emissions. UK – SME Climate hub (

Paul also talked about HVO fuels as a great way of reducing the carbon footprint HVO Fuel Suppliers – HVO Renewable Diesel Deliveries | Speedy Fuels and offsetting carbon credits by investing in tree planting schemes in the UK and overseas What is carbon offsetting? | World Economic Forum (

Following a well-deserved round of applause all delegates then moved to the Conference Centre for light refreshments before the main presentations began.

Angela Morrison of C&D Demolition Consultants Limited then introduced IDE President Richard Dolman, FIDE supported by IDE Vice President Vernon Watson, FIDEwho welcomed everyone to the meeting and took a few minutes to bring everyone up to date with what was happening within the IDE regarding education, the IDE Foundation Degree and the MSc Degree in conjunction with University of Wolverhampton and other CPD events. The President also confirmed that the IDE will not be producing a magazine in future as the Council of Management felt that there are enough Demolition Industry magazines in the marketplace. A question from the floor as to whether the IDE website could be improved was met with a response that plans were in place to improve the website itself and, more importantly, the content within the website.

The first presentation of the session was by Ed Pugh of JBV Demolition Limited who introduced case studies on the use of Autostem concrete breaking as used on projects at Blackpool Pleasure Beach and within a chemical works site in Warrington.  Ed used great images and video of the products in use and outlined the cost savings on conventional demolition methods.

Next to speak was Matthew Bardgett of C&D Demolition Consultants Limited who gave an interesting view on the structural engineering considerations required when carrying out soft stripping works to avoid premature collapse.

Matthew gave suggestions for how to avoid situations of collapse on site and mentioned the use of fully trained CCDO operatives. This then led to lively comment and debate within the audience as to the difficulty in obtaining suitably trained operatives and the reasons for that difficulty. Suggestions were made by more than one person that the NDTG should offer the CCDO Level One and DRO cards at a price that the average person can afford, rather than the price that NDTG believe they can charge.

The final presentation of the event was scheduled to be delivered by Mike Kehoe, MD of C&D Demolition Consultants Limited, but unfortunately, he had been called out to an emergency fire demolition in Mid Wales so was unable to attend the event. In typical C&D “Plan B” style he had arranged a replacement presenter in Former IDE President John Woodward who delivered the prepared presentation on the dangers and pitfalls within demolition of multi-storey car parks.

The presentation highlighted that when most of the UK car parks were built in the 1960’s and 1970’s there were designed to take vehicles weighing around 1 tonne whilst modern vehicles weigh more than three times that weight putting those car parks on the brink of failure at any time.

There was discussion about the failure of a car park in Southend on Sea during demolition and that the client had let the contract to the lowest bidder, a demolition contractor with little or no experience on that type of structure, rather than awarding the contract to a far more experienced contractor and those clients still ignore their legal duties under CDM2015.

The President then closed the meeting thanking everyone for their attendance and advising that more regional meetings are planned for the remainder of 2021 and into 2022.


Author:  John Woodward Hon.FIDE C&D Demolition Consultants Ltd

Photographs courtesy of Worsley Plant and C&D Demolition Consultants Ltd

The content of this article represents the personal views of the author and nothing is to be taken as representing the views, opinions, policy or position of any other persons or organisations mentioned herein or of the Institute of Demolition Engineers.