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Author: The Construction Index

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A weekly podcast in which veteran construction industry journalists Bishop and Taylor have a natter about some of the week’s events in the UK construction industry, seeking meaning even where none may exist.

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61 Episodes
Bishop & Taylor cast an eye on the wonderful world of wood. They also note the inability (or reluctance?) of construction workers to save for their old age, and express disdain for surveys confected to promote vested interests.
Bishop & Taylor are joined by acclaimed folk musician Nancy Kerr to talk about her latest work, Tunnellers, and by Dr Benoît Jones, the man from the British Tunnelling Society who commissioned the work. But first they talk to Daren Lester, chief executive of SpecifiedBy, and hear that the proposed Code for Construction Product Information might not be a good idea.
Acquisitions have been in the news, with new owners for Avant Homes and Kier Living, while RSK’s ‘buy to grow’ strategy shows no sign of slowing. Bishop & Taylor discuss this and more, including steel imports and the latest on smart motorways.
Bishop & Taylor (middle-aged pink-faced men) tentatively discuss boardroom diversity. They also mull possible reform of the National Infrastructure Commission. And they talk to Jonathan Townsend, Chief Executive of the Prince’s Trust.
A revelatory discussion with construction law barrister Professor Rudi Klein, who has championed the interests of subcontractors for more than 30 years, with some heroic successes along the way. Among topics covered are the use and abuse of project bank accounts to protect money owed to suppliers.
After a brief recap of some of the week’s UK industry news, Bishop & Taylor turn their attention to the rescue of the stranded EverGiven container ship. They also discuss recruiting in prisons to counter labour shortages.  
Bishop & Taylor are joined by Peter Lauerner, chair of the Construction Industry Training Board, who explains why the CITB has decided to keep two of its training centres after all. They also celebrate the Court of Appeal judgment quashing the 47-year-old convictions against striking builders. And they ask expert witness Jacqui Bishop: after a year of working from home, what have we learned?
Surveys and reports from Redrow, the CITB and the Construction Leadership Council provide food for thought on construction recruitment and training. Bishop & Taylor discuss some of the issues arising. There’s also news from HS2 of an unlikely replacement for rebar.
In a bumper episode, Bishop & Taylor discuss aspirations for a fixed link between Northern Ireland and Great Britain, the social value of construction, aspects of fire safety left neglected amid the cladding scandal, and Doosan’s transparent loading shovel.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak delivered his post-Covid budget for the UK this week, giving Bishop & Taylor plenty to chat about. They also discuss Interserve’s branding U-turn.
Bishop & Taylor get their teeth into issues of direct employment, senior recruitment and meaningless, obtuse and/or imprecise jargon.
Bishop & Taylor spend most of this episode discussing proposals for a mandatory builders’ licensing scheme with the project’s architect, Federation of Master Builders (FMB) Chief Executive Brian Berry.
Bishop & Taylor are joined by Hardy Giesler, Chief Executive of the British Board of Agrément (BBA), who tells them about the changes he is planning within the much-criticised organisation.
Bishop & Taylor chew over the government’s latest planning proposals, the leadership of major projects and the UK’s continuing dependency on migrant labour.
Bishop & Taylor discuss a new code for construction product marketing, (lack of) transparency at the British Board of Agrément, and the hydraulic jacking of an 11,000-tonne box tunnel.
This week Bishop & Taylor reflect on changes to the Prompt Payment Code, the new building products regulator and consolidation in the builders’ merchant sector.
The UK construction industry is warned that it may be about to become ‘embroiled in costly and long-running disputes’. This, along with HS2’s new personnel database and the role of artificial intelligence (AI) on site, are on Bishop & Taylor’s agenda this week.
As the UK enters its third national lockdown, Bishop & Taylor take solace in the Brexit deal that has averted even greater chaos; they discuss the threat facing hundreds of old railway bridges; and wonder whether Berkeley Group’s recruitment this week of the Archdeacon of Hackney might start a trend for clergy in the boardroom.
With the end of 2020 upon us, Bishop & Taylor reflect on some of the big talking points of the year.
Bishop & Taylor discuss flexible working with Emma Stewart, Chief Executive of Timewise, and how it might help to improve the construction industry.
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