Can you help the MoD?

From the President: As a Professional Institute consisting of individual members…

As a Professional Institute consisting of individual members the IDE are not obliged to endorse or comment on opinions that are expressed publicly by an individual and/or the companies that they are employed by. All public statements produced by the IDE or on behalf of the IDE will be reviewed by the IDE Council of Management and judged on their suitability in-line with the Institutes Rules and, in particular, the Code of Conduct. 

The IDE exists to promote demolition engineering as a skilled profession. It aims to provide a forum for demolition engineer professionals to network, develop their skills and learn from each other. As an individual membership body, the IDE does not recommend or issue guidance regarding methods of demolition.

Furthermore, the Institute does not adopt responsibility or liability for any individual member’s viewpoints regarding approaches to demolition works.

AGM and Annual Luncheon 22nd November 2019

The Pall Mall headquarters of the Royal Automobile Association was the venue for the 43rd Institute of Demolition Engineers AGM and Awards ceremony. Click here to read the full minutes AGM-minutes-2019

Following on from a turbulent year in the industry, President Gary Bishop FIDE welcomed everyone to the packed venue and thanked all within the IDE for their help and assistance throughout this time.

On a pleasing note, Bishop reported that the Institute was in a healthy state with membership increasing from 414 in the previous year to 421 in 2019 and a full intake of students taking part in both the first and second intake for the Foundation Degree in Demolition Management. Congratulations were also passed on to the first students to pass the initial intake of the MSc and become the first in the World to obtain a degree in demolition. “We are now looked upon as the best of the best in this industry.” Bishop commented “And we should encourage our membership to consider sitting the degree course as the next step in their development within the industry.” On a more disappointing note, it was said that of the 15 participants in the March to September IDE examinations, only 9 passed with the remaining 6 being encouraged to try again as soon as possible.

Both Bishop and Honorary Treasurer Stuart Accleton FIDE confirmed the healthy financial position at which the Institute currently resides thanks in part to sold out Seminars at Leeds and London. On the issue of Seminars, the cancellation of the Scottish Seminar was seen as extremely disappointing with a call for the event to be rescheduled or the organisation of further regional meetings over the border to cater for Scottish members. The sound financial standing of the Institute has also seen the Council of Management hold off any increases in subscription fees for the foreseeable future and leaving the current rates as they were in 2019. Accleton then went on to comment on the Institute’s forthcoming guidance on CPD along with praising members for their generosity in raising over £5,000 for the President’s charity, Niemann Pick UK at the 2018 AGM.

Dr Terry Quarmby FIDE took to the stage to give an update on the degree and masters courses currently running stating that the uptake is still very good. Dr Quarmby stated there were calls from the members to introduce distance learning to the courses and whilst this has been investigated, the stumbling block is currently with the education providers and it is something the Institute is looking into with the hope of implementing within the near future. Quarmby went on to say that the Institute is in discussions with the University of Bedfordshire to offer Foundation degree students the chance to complete a BSc Hons degree in Construction Management as a follow-on course. There has also been a call for topical learning courses to be available in specific subjects. This is something the Institute is looking to proceed with and invited members to offer their skills in writing and delivering such courses.

Training and learning has been a topical issue with the many incidents within the industry this past year and whilst there was a call from the floor for the Institute to speak up on the matters, Past President David Darsey was quick to point out that the legal implications don’t allow either the Institute or the NFDC to speak on individual cases. “It is disgraceful that the authorities take so long to bring a case to conclusion, eight years on average. But we cannot act on rumour and gossip and will only comment when the full facts of the investigation are released.” On this subject, Vice President Richard Dolman FIDE brought up the possibility of re-launching the information sharing forum which he started a couple of years ago. In the light of recent incidents, this offer will be considered with the possibility of it being hosted by either the NFDC or the IDE.

Following on from lunch in the stunning Mountbatten Room, over 40 certificates were handed out to new and progressing members with Past Presidents Steve Jack and John Woodward along with ECY Haulmark’s Richard Yarwood being given Honorary Fellowship awards.

The afternoon’s events were rounded off with the generosity of the members coming to the fore and raising funds for NPUK. £20 in the envelope, the raffle draw and Past President David Darsey FIDE leading a charity auction.  Once the accounts have been finalised for this event the final fundraising figure will be announced.

The Institute would like to extend their thanks to the event sponsors, ECY Haulmark, Erith Group and Swanton Consulting along with the kindness of everyone who donated raffle and auction prizes.

IDE Elections 2019 Update

John Brierley RIP

Autumn Seminar 2019

One Great George Street was host to the IDE’s Autumn Seminar again with the prestigious venue being booked up weeks in advance for yet another interesting event.

Welcoming guests to the auditorium, IDE President Gary Bishop FIDE, asked attendees to stand for a minute’s silence in remembrance of Total Reclaims’ Joe Childs who sadly passed away recently.

Usually presiding over the Institute’s accounts, The Erith Groups Stuart Accleton FIDE was the opening speaker for the day. Stuart delivered a message to Members on the importance of CPD and the need to ensure that any hours accrued during the year are collated by the Institute to give Members a true record of their development. As the Institute is audited by the Engineering Council, it is necessary for records to be updated regularly to keep your membership compliant.

With mental health rightly being a hot topic within the industry of late, Morgan Sindall’s SHE Director Martin Hall took to the stage to speak about the massive issue facing the demolition and wider construction industry. “1-in-4 will suffer from mental health issues.” Martin commented before going on to say that the industry will clamp down on people caught in random drug and alcohol tests whilst not discovering the reasons behind their use as both substances are used predominately by sufferers to self-medicate. The latest figures for deaths in the construction industry stands at 43 in 2016, workers are 15 times more likely to take their own lives which actually equates to a staggering 454 workers from the construction industry passing away in 2016, the first-year figures were collated. If these figures were included in the statistics, the HSE wold close the industry down immediately according to Martin who closed his talk by urging the industry to commit to making a difference. Martin Hall Mental Health

Ryan Noon from Howard Stott Demolition spoke about his company’s contract to demolish a fire damaged car park at the M&S Arena in Liverpool. The structure had been extensively damaged by an intense car fire with many of the floors inaccessible due to their dilapidated state. From the initial enquiry from one of their regular clients to the issues with potentially contaminated material from the building, the Stott team were thrown a number of curve balls including the need to keep certain areas of the structure open, dealing with apartments and a hotel a few metres from the structure and the requirement to remove the source car and others safely and securely all within a small working area littered with underground services and access tunnels. Ryan Noon Echo Arena Car Park 2

Jon Miller, Solicitor and Partner at Fenwick Elliott LLP commenced the late morning session with a talk on the importance of reading, understanding and following to the letter any form of contract a company enters into. Jon recounted a number of cases where the description laid out in a contract was deemed to be onerous on either party. Contract disputes are often over payments and Jon explained that the simple rule of thumb is that when an application for payment is received it should be read, understood and either a payment or a pay less notice issued. “Many contractors say they never have the time, but just by doing this, you can save yourself a fortune should a dispute be entered into.” Jon left the audience with these words echoing in their ears; “Contract, contract, contract, always read the contract.” Jon Miller Fenwick Elliott Legal Update

NFDC CEO Howard Button FIDE came to the stage with a plea for Members to send him wood samples. Not by the skip load that many hoped for, but samples of older timber from properties being demolished. The Environment Agency are on a crusade to classify waste wood as a hazardous product which will incur massive onward costs to the demolition industry having to find alternative waste receivers for the 250,000 tonnes of material produced annually by just NFDC member companies. “We have had a small number of samples sent in.” Howard explained “But, the EA require us to test in the region of 300 per category and we need your assistance to do this before they load us with additional charges.” Howard Button 2019-09-27 Wood Waste IDE Seminar

The afternoon session started with a change of speaker with Back to Back Production’s Nigel Gainsborough talking about the making of the hit tv programme Scrap Kings which airs on Quest. Nigel spoke about the way his filming teams interact and produce the show which documents the trials and tribulations of a number of high-profile demolition contractors undertaking interesting projects around the UK.

Long-term IDE Member, Bruce Atkinson took to the stage to talk about his long career in the industry with a look at the methods of demolition and deconstruction carried out for a number of Yorkshire based companies he has been employed by. From battleships to power stations, Bruce has made a career out of demolishing and recycling some impressive structures throughout his 60 years in the industry and spoke about how at points the Government controlled where scrap went, how costs of living and working have changes and how health and safety has made a huge impact on the industry. Bruce Atkinson

The CCS has been running for over 20 years and Mike Petter was the penultimate speaker of the day taking the stage to speak about the benefits the scheme has to offer contractors. Mike spoke about the changes in perception from the public to construction sites and the professional looking image many of them now portray. Mike also added that the demolition industry is quickly realising the benefits of the scheme with a dedicated Recognised Constructor badge specifically tailored for the industry. Mike Petter CCS Is Image Everything

The final presentation was from Gilpin’s Duncan Rudall FIDE and Richard Taffs from Teignmouth Maritime Services who spoke about the challenging removal of portions of a World War Two gun emplacement on a cliff side in Guernsey. The complex project involved the hand and explosive demolition of the concrete and stone structure to stop it falling into the sea, damaging the cliffs and potentially taking some of the existing heritage structure with it.  Working with Autostem to loosen the material, the structure was made safe with the aid of hand demolition working by a team of experienced abseiliers.

The Institute would like to extend their thanks to everyone who attended the event and to our exhibitors; ANV Measurement Systems, BPH Attachments, Campbell Associates, Caterpillar, ECY Haulmark, Liebherr Great Britain, National Federation of Demolition Contractors and Worsley Plant.

Author and Photography: RPA Photography

Engineering Council Professional Affiliate Seminar

On Tuesday 10th September 2019, IDE Council of Management Member, Mark Jack MIDE, attended the Engineering Council’s Professional Affiliates Seminar.

The first item discussed was confirmation that the Engineering Council remains internationally recognised as a Washington Accord signatory. This means that the Engineering Councils 2015 policy remains in place and signatories have accepted that the Engineering Council will require further learning to Masters level for WA Bachelor graduates from 2019 graduation. In summary this means that the Engineering Council will treat WA Bachelor graduates in much the same way as UK Bachelor graduates in the process towards Chartered Engineer registration, namely requiring candidates to demonstrate further learning beyond the outcomes of their accredited Bachelor qualification, i.e. to Masters level.

The seminar then moved on and a short presentation was given by Deborah Seddon on Engineering Council Guidance in support of standards. Deborah discussed the EC’s five current topics which are Ethics, Risk, Security, Sustainability and Whistleblowing. Each of these topics were briefly discussed and literature in the form of pamphlets and wallet cards were issued to all.

Next on the agenda CEO Alasdair Coates provided an update on Engineering Council news from over the last year.

During a presentation that provided a summary of professional affiliate reviews, one of the main items discussed was CPD and the audience were informed that additional guidance can be found on the Engineering Council website on how CPD can be recorded  and managed as well as guidance on penalties for not providing CPD.

Next on the agenda was the standards review consultation in which Chris Kirby talked about the notable changes to the UK standard for professional Engineering competence (UK-SPEC), Accrediation of higher education programs (AHEP), Approval of Qualifications and apprenticeships Handbook (AQAH) and Registration Code of Practice (RCoP).

The last item of the day was Registration Agreements/Joint Registration Board, the licencing team gave an overview for Professional Affiliates who are interested in providing registration. A pocket guide to professional registration was also issued.

A most enjoyable and informative day!

Author: M Jack MIDE, IDE COM

11th International Conference on Construction in the 21st Century (CITC)

On the 9th and 10th of October the Institute of Demolition Engineers was represented at the 11th International Conference on Construction in the 21st Century (CITC). The event was attended by Richard Dolman FIDE Vice President and held at RICS Headquarters 12 Great George St, Westminster, London SW1P 3AD.

The conference was organised and sponsored by East Carolina University, USA, University of Wolverhampton, UK, The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), UK, City University of Science and Information Technology Peshawar,(Pakistan), Auburn University, USA, Babcock University, Nigeria, Quantity Surveyors International (QSI), and Construction Management Association of America (CMMA).

This year’s conference welcomed people from the industry to participate in the seminar proceedings which included a selection of keynote speakers, presentations of academic papers and industry case studies. Demolition presentations included:

Construction and Demolition Waste Management on Construction Sites in Kazakhstan: Abid Nadeem, Altynay Khamatova, Md Aslam Hossain, and Hua Yan Leung

Life cycle costing for decision making in construction and demolition waste management: a review: I M Chethana, S Illankoon, and Vivian WY

Deconstruction of the Broadmarsh Carpark and Bus Station Nottingham City Centre UK. (Industrial Case Study). Richard Dolman FIDE

Demolition of Britain’s Last Deep Coal Mine – Kelling Colliery (Industrial Case Study) Carleen Murry

Deconstruction and Demolition Supporting Regeneration Through High Speed Rail Connectivity: Christina Wallace

Other interesting sessions included:

Tackling the War for Talent: The need for improving diversity and inclusion in Real Estate and Construction: Amanda Clack

Implementing Quality Control Management on the London Bridge Station Project: Sandra Nicolls and Allan Wong

The organisers deemed the event a great success and felt the presence of industry added greatly to the event and are hoping that this development will continue to be adopted at future conferences.

Author: Patricia Sloneczny, CSR Director, A R Demolition 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.

Engineers urged to get involved in Tomorrow’s Engineer Week

Tomorrow’s Engineers Week takes place 4-8 November 2019, with inaugural This is Engineering Day on 6th November.

EngineeringUK and the Royal Academy of Engineering have called on Engineers and Engineering Technicians across the UK to get behind plans for Tomorrow’s Engineers Week (4th-8th November 2019 #TEWeek19).

Now in it’s seventh year, Tomorrow’s Engineers Week provides a unique opportunity for engineers, employers, universities and schools to showcase how engineers working in all sectors are on a mission to make the world a better place.  Highlights of the Week include the first This is Engineering Day on Wednesday 6 November to challenge the public stereotype of the engineer, a series of films celebrating engineers on a mission to help the nation’s health and well-being, as well as the second Tomorrow’s Engineers Week Big Assembly.

Employers, professional bodies, universities, schools and individual engineers are invited to get involved to help inspire the next generation of engineers by downloading tool kits of ideas at

Beth Elgood from EngineeringUK, the organisers of Tomorrow’s Engineers Week explained: “Tomorrow’s Engineers Week provides an opportunity for the engineering community to work together to inspire the next generation of engineers.  The number of professional engineering institutions, engineering employers and individual engineers who participate in this collective drive to raise the profile of engineers grows each year.  Whether it’s visiting a school to talk about engineering careers as part of the Big Assembly, staging an event to celebrate what engineers do or supporting Tomorrow’s Engineers Week on social media there are lots of ways to get involved”.

The Wednesday of Tomorrow’s Engineers Week will see the Royal Academy of Engineering unveil the next major moment in its This is Engineering campaign, This is Engineering Day, a new national awareness day dedicated to publicly celebrating the engineers and engineering technicians shaping society and solving global problems.

This year, This is Engineering Day is focused on changing the stereotypical image of the engineer and engineering among the wider public and will see engineering organisations, engineers and supporters like Amazon, Ocado and Facebook showcase what 21st Century engineers and engineering really look like.

To help the public better understand engineers and engineering, the Royal Academy of Engineering will be creating a public online photo library of more representative images of engineers and launching a challenge to use this to change the mix of images that appear when you search for ‘engineer’ on line.

The Academy is calling on the engineering community to get involved in the challenge and contribute to the library, which will also be populated by the Academy’s own This is Engineering imagery and hosted on Flickr.  Contributions can be made directly to the Academy and more details can be found by contacting the Academy at [email protected]. The  This is Engineering Library will be launched to the wider public on This is Engineering Day.

Hayaatun Sillem, Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Engineering said: “Engineering and technology play an incredible role in shaping the world around us and in addressing some of society’s biggest challenges, from providing a sustainable supply of food, water and clean energy, to advancing healthcare, and keeping us safe and secure.  We know that young people increasingly want to tackle these issues and make a difference in the world, but unfortunately a lack of understanding of who engineers are and what engineering does in the 21st century is stopping young people from considering it as a career.

“Engineering has so many extraordinary opportunities for young people, but the UK has a shortfall of 59,000 engineers every year, while only 12% of professional engineers are female and 9% are from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds.  We hope that This Engineering Day can shine a light on who engineers really are and what they do, so that we can banish the outdated stereotypes that prevent young people from seeing a future for themselves in this crucial and rewarding profession”.

Author: Sarah Colombini and Simon Francis, Campaign Collective. Tomorrow’s Engineers

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.

Say Hello to Amy!

We are very pleased to welcome Amy Roberts to the IDE HQ team as our new Education and Training Administrator.

Amy will be looking after all administrative tasks associated with the IDE Foundation Degree in Demolition Management and IDE CPD Scheme.  She will also assist the National Secretary with the Examination process.

National Secretary, Maureen Tong-Ralphs  commented ‘Amy brings with her a wealth of skills and a strong administrative background and we are very pleased she has joined us at this progressive time for the IDE’.    

You will be able to meet Amy at the Autumn Seminar on 27th September, she can also be contacted at [email protected]