Construction in 2000s

As we celebrate our 50th year, we continue Natta’s reflection on construction through the decades. Moving onto the early 2000s!

After more than a decade of steady economic growth, a recession hit the UK in 2008, affecting housing development. Housing construction fell to its lowest peacetime level since the early 1930s. The average UK house price dropped by 15% in January 2008. This affected workers in the construction industry, with no new homes being built, there was no work, and unemployment started to rise. By the last quarter of 2009, the UK economy finally started to move out of recession. It was not until 2012 that house prices fully recovered.

Construction Machinery

The 2000s saw a great breakthrough for JCB. In 2004, they celebrated the production of their 500,000th machine! This achievement took around 60 years to reach. With the company well-established and continuing to grow, the next half million machines were produced faster than before.

Caterpillar introduced its first engine equipped with Advanced Combustion Emission Reduction (ACERT) Technology in 2001. This revolutionary design reduced the emissions at the point of combustion. Using a combination of engine electronics, fuel injection and combustion techniques, Caterpillar machinery is now more environmentally friendly. Since then, Caterpillar has sold more than 450,000 on-highway engines with ACERT Technology.

JCB Celebration and CAT ACERT Tech

Market Players

The 2000s took Grainger PLC into the European market. In 2005 they acquired a residential portfolio of €71.5 million in Germany. Throughout the rest of the decade, they expanded further. By 2009, they owned and had an interest in 24,414 properties in the UK and Germany.

Redrow PLC campaigned to make themselves the ’employer of choice’. In 2003, they launched their national training centre for their employees to go through apprenticeship or graduate training programmes. In 2006 Redrow was proud to celebrate a real milestone by handing over the keys to their 50,000th customer. Steve Morgan, Founder of Redrow returned to the company in 2009 after a 9-year sabbatical. Steve proceeded to point the company in the right direction. He re-opened several sites and offices that had been closed previously during the credit crunch.

During the early 2000s, Balfour Beatty took its first year as a PLC and sold the last parts of BICC which became a tremendous success. Balfour Beatty started with 25,000 staff and a £2.3bn turnover, and throughout the next few years, they saw a steady acquisition. During this period Balfour Beatty saw massive growth with a turnover of around £10bn and their staff expanding to 52,000.

Health & Safety

The Work at Height Regulations came into force in 2005, after falls from heights became the biggest reason for fatality in construction. These regulations led to a reduction in the use of ladders on sites. They were only allowed to be used as a last resort.

Natta wanted to help expand the health and safety of construction workers and in 2004 the Construction Industry Safety Training Centre, CISTC was established. CISTC is a CITB Approved Training Organisation (ATO), that specialises in health and safety training for the construction industry.

CISTC Training Center

By understanding that one of the keys to success is the need for highly-skilled workers – how best to ensure this than by training and growing our talented workforce. Today CISTC not only provides Natta employees with the skills they need but also offers a wide range of construction courses directly to the industry.

Natta’s proudest achievement is its first-class safety record. To date, over 5,800,000 man-hours have been worked without a RIDDOR reportable accident. Our organisation prides itself on Safety First – People First. We ensure everyone goes home safe, every day. We are continuously evolving our safety culture to encompass wider well-being in our workforce. Natta conducts yearly health checks, hosts company well-being days and provides insurance and mentoring.