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Curtins Retains Investors in People Platinum Accreditation until 2025

Date: 5th May 2022

Curtins Retains Investors in People Platinum Accreditation until 2025

We are delighted to announce that Curtins has retained its Investors in People Platinum Accreditation until 2025 in recognition of an outstanding commitment to staff welfare and people management.  

We received our very first Investors in People Accreditation in 2006, achieving the entry level National Standard. Since then, we have worked our way up through the ranks until we were awarded the Investors in People Platinum in 2019. Retaining the accreditation demonstrates our exemplar commitment to our people as well as our ambition to continuously build on this. 

The IIP Platinum accreditation is the highest accolade that can be achieved against the Investors in People Standard and is currently held by fewer than 1% of IIP accredited organisations. 

The IIP assessment includes: 

  • Interviews with staff selected at random
  • An interview with the CEO 
  • In-depth analysis of data  
  • Presentation by Directors of HR, Learning & Development and Communications on key topics 
  • Analysis and review by an independent panel  

As with previous assessments and annual reviews, it was clearly evident that our people shared a strong, collective desire to preserve the company’s DNA by honouring the legacy of our founder, Bill Curtin.  

The IIP Platinum assessor, John O’Sullivan, detailed that Curtins has “an enduring commitment to doing the right thing by [their] people, shaping their decision to transition to an Employee-Owned Trust in 2021.” He also commented on how, despite the obstacles that befell the company during the pandemic, “keeping faith with the core business philosophy helped the business bounce back and return to profitable growth.”    

Furthermore, within his report, John discussed the fact that Curtins was “able to demonstrate a number of exemplar practices that continue to place you ahead of construction industry norms in areas such as staff development, social responsibility and equality & diversity.”  

 CEO Rob Melling comments on what IIP Platinum means for the company:  

We are delighted to have retained the Investors in People Platinum for the next three years. This is an achievement for everyone at Curtins as it reflects the hard work and dedication of all our staff.  We all work hard to foster a culture where we care for each other and where we ensure that everyone reaches their full potential and is happy and fulfilled in their work.”  

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Cancer Research UK nominated as the Curtins Care Charity 2022

Date: 3rd February 2022

Cancer Research UK nominated as the Curtins Care Charity 2022

 

Every year, our staff select a charity of the year to support out of a pool of nominations. In 2021, after a two-year partnership with Samaritans, we raised over £20,000 for them. For 2022, our proudly chosen Curtins Care Charity is Cancer Research UK, who is the world’s leading cancer charity, dedicated to saving lives through research, influence and information. They are working tirelessly to achieve the vision to bring forwards the day when all 200 types of cancer are cured.  

To celebrate, all of our offices took part in an Elevenses catch up and connect event where we took time out of our day to enjoy catching up over a selection of fruit and pastries. 

We are excited to be embarking on this partnership in order to achieve our Curtins Care mission of enriching the lives of families, individuals and communities through charitable giving and fundraising.  

We hope that our fundraising activities throughout 2022 can go some way in helping Cancer Research UK continue their ground-breaking research in the fight against cancer.  

For more information, visit Cancer Research UK’s website at Cancer Research UK. 

 #CurtinsCare 

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We’re welcoming our new BIM Manager to the Curtins team

Date: 25th January 2022

We’re welcoming our new BIM Manager to the Curtins team

Joining us from SLR Consulting and bringing with him a wealth of almost 30 years’ experience, the people of Curtins are welcoming our new BIM Manager, Scott Pritchard, to the team, and we are delighted to have him. Scott’s expertise in BIM goes in hand with Curtins’ reputation as being a market leader in BIM. We are confident that he will do great work in the Central Services team, especially with assisting the Project Delivery teams by driving forward our digital delivery capacity.

Scott’s role will focus on passing this year’s BSI audit to retain our Kitemark accreditation, developing training and tools to make it easier for us to comply with information delivery requirements on projects, and looking at how we can adjust our current workflows to help ease some of the pressures in project delivery.

Scott will be working alongside Phil Hughes, David Price and Neil Parkinson to grow our reputation as market leader in BIM and make Curtins a pioneer in digital delivery.

On the appointment to the new role, Phil Hughes comments:

We’re delighted to have Scott as part of the team. With his wealth of experience and expertise in BIM we know he will make a valuable asset to Curtins, and will complement the skills of Neil, David and me. With the addition of his skill set, we strive to grow our reputation as market leader in BIM and digital delivery.”

Scott’s vast wealth of experience seeks to strengthen and complement the sectors that Curtins have built up their outstanding reputation for across their 60-year heritage.

Scott comments: “My ultimate goal would be for Curtins to become the go-to business for anyone interested in digital delivery. Whether that be a new client looking for an innovative approach to delivering their project, a school leaver or graduate looking to kick start their career or someone looking to take their career to the next level at a pioneering organisation like us.”

 

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Curtins welcomes our new Director to the Leeds office

Date: 19th January 2022

Curtins welcomes our new Director to the Leeds office

Bringing with him over 20 years of experience in the Leeds construction market, Colin Riches has joined Curtins from Mott Macdonald, and we are delighted to have him in our team. Colin’s appointment aims to further strengthen the management team and the company’s civil and structural engineering offer. The new role will focus on supporting the growing team’s project delivery across Leeds and the rest of the Yorkshire region, and Colin will work together with local Board Directors Neil Parkinson and Richard Osbond to further build local client relationships.  

Colin will work alongside Richard Osbond as leading the day to day running of the office, while Osbond takes up a wider role as Board Director with a focus on growing market share across the North East. 

On the appointment, Richard Osbond comments:We really are delighted to have Colin on board. I have known Colin for many years as a great character in the Leeds area and the timing is just right for him to join Curtins. Colin’s broad and technically exceptional skill-set in structural engineering, from commercial projects to numerous healthcare schemes, perfectly complements the work that we are delivering for our clients.” 

Colin’s wealth of experience compliments and seeks to strengthen the sectors that Curtins have built up and has an eminent reputation for in across their 14 offices over their 60-year heritage. 

Colin comments: “I’m really looking forward to helping to strengthen and build on what is already a remarkable team here in Curtins’ Leeds. We’ve started the year solidly, already getting stuck into the redevelopment of the Tetley Brewery on the South Bank.” 

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Planning Consent Granted for £1bn ‘Fourth Mile’ scheme in Chiswick, London

Date: 12th January 2022

Planning Consent Granted for £1bn ‘Fourth Mile’ scheme in Chiswick, London

The Fourth Mile, an events and exhibition complex dedicated to cutting-edge technology, boasting a prominent spot by the A4 Great West Road, the M4 and North Circular in Chiswick, has been given the go-ahead by Hounslow council. The development which also include a 197-bedroom hotel, 234 apartments as well as the technology showcase will now be referred to the Mayor of London for final approval.

Curtins were appointed by developers Reef Group to provide transport planning advice on this challenging site, which is bounded by some of London’s most congested and polluted roads, as well as a railway freight line. As a dense mixed-use scheme, careful planning and integration was required of the team, which alongside Curtins included DP9, Benoy, Gardiner & Theobold, Trium Environmental Consulting and led by Reef Group and Blackrock Real Assets.

Curtins Director Steven Farthing, comments: “Having been involved in this visionary project for 5 years and seeing it through a number of Hounslow, TfL and community consultations, we are thrilled that it has now secured consent subject to GLA approval. The public realm and sustainability elements of this scheme make it a particularly exciting project for us to be involved in as it is targeting a BREEAM Outstanding rating”.

Should the development be given the final greenlight by GLA, it will see improvements at nearby Gunnersbury Station and Kew Bridge Station, as well as enhancements to local bus services and other sustainable travel measures.

Curtins’ client, Stewart Deering of Reef Group, said: “Fourth Mile is a pioneering new scheme, which will see essential new homes side by side with companies that are leading the way in automotive technology and innovation. The scheme is set to become a vibrant mixed-use development underpinned by principles of sustainability. We have worked closely with the London Borough of Hounslow to get to this stage and look forward to continuing to work with them and the local community through delivery.”

 

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Curtins expands Board to strengthen leadership team

Date: 13th December 2021

Curtins expands Board to strengthen leadership team

In a year of milestones and following Curtins’ transition to become an Employee-Owned Trust, the company will be further strengthening its leadership team with several key appointments to our Board of Directors.

As an independently owned business, Curtins is known for its agility and ability to evolve to seize opportunities. The appointments, which will be formalised on 1st January 2022, will mobilise our leadership for the growth and development of the business.

Formerly comprising only civil and structural engineers, the Board will now include wider representation from Curtins’ specialisms, as well as seven new business functions.

From January 2022, our Board of Directors will include:

  • Rob Melling, Chief Executive
  • Dan Evans, Director for London, Cambridge and Geotechnical teams
  • Jon Moister, Director for Manchester and the Environmental Business teams
  • Paul Menzies, Director for Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff and Dublin teams
  • Neil Parkinson, Director for Liverpool, Kendal, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Douglas and Principal Designer teams
  • Richard Osbond, Director for Leeds and Nottingham teams
  • Alex Vogt, Director for the national Transport Planning team
  • Oliver Delucia-Crook, Business Development Director
  • Phil Bruford, Finance Director
  • Helen Salt, HR Director
  • David Price, IT Director
  • Rebecca King, Learning & Development Director
  • Rhiannon Carss, Marketing & Communications Director
  • Phil Hughes, Risk & Compliance Director

This development comes at a time when the business is in a financially strong position, with a diverse client base and broad market spread.

Above all, Curtins has a rich pool of talent in our people, and the skills being brought by the internal appointments will enhance the dynamic and capabilities of our Board of Directors.

In broadening the business functions of our Board, further career opportunities have also been unlocked for staff across the company, which strongly resonates with our values to provide development opportunities to all.

Rob Melling, Chief Executive comments, “This is a hugely exciting and positive step for our business, our people and the clients we serve. We’re seeing an increasing number of opportunities across our sectors, so we feel the time is right to mobilise for further growth in the business.

“We also recognise that there will continue to be external challenges for us, such as the post-Brexit economy, climate change and skills shortages, to name a few. The composition of our leadership will enable us to navigate through these challenges, whilst seizing opportunities.

“The time is right for the next stage of Curtins’ evolution.”

Through the development, Curtins hopes to continue to grow the business in a controlled and organic way, whilst offering more for our clients through the enhanced ability to help them achieve their objectives.

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Carroll Court set to be the largest Passivhaus project in the world

Date: 23rd November 2021

Carroll Court set to be the largest Passivhaus project in the world

Demolition has taken place at Carroll Court in Bristol to make way for the new 900 bed student accommodation scheme for the University of West of England, which is set to become the first phase of the largest student accommodation Passivhaus project in the world.

The enabling works aspects of the project have been undertaken by Pennys Group. Our team have been instrumental in taking the project to this stage, alongside Stride Treglown, by providing services including ground investigations, drainage design, cut and fill modelling, demolition risk, ground void risk and piling assessment, pile load testing, piling mat design and inspections. In doing so, we have worked through complicated ground conditions in a methodical manner; highlighting risk and potential outcomes to ensure the best solution could be achieved with appropriate testing to keep the project on programme and risk managed. The site is now prepared ready for Vinci to commence with the main construction works for Phase 1.

Once completed, Carroll Court will provide 900 student rooms on the Frenchay main campus. With sustainability at its core and the key drive for obtaining Passivhaus standards, we’ve supported the team in developing engineering options which meet the insulation and finishing requirements of this level of award.

To achieve this, we have led the civil and structural engineering design including a frame selection process that assesses the various design criteria of airtightness, thermal bridging, acoustic performance and speed of construction against cost and risk, in order to determine the optimum frame choice. As part of our frame assessment we also undertook an embodied carbon assessment of each frame option to help advise the client on what the associated embodied carbon in construction per m2 of development would be for each option, using our embodied Carbon Digital Toolkit.

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Curtins staff rally to support The Give a Duck Foundation

Date: 4th November 2021

Curtins staff rally to support The Give a Duck Foundation

Dedicated staff at Curtins have rallied together to donate £330 to The Give A Duck Foundation. The Wakefield based charity, Give A Duck, provides support to children with cancer with their Chemo Ducks, which are fitted with medical lines to mirror those of the child. The ducks are used in preparation for the challenging treatments the children have to endure and by allowing the children to request treatment demonstrations on the toys, they are able to regain some control at a very difficult time in their young lives.

Our donation is in addition to the work we carry out through our in-house charitable initiative called Curtins Care, which focuses the attention of our 14 offices on a staff-nominated charity of the year – this year it is Samaritans.

Through Curtins Care, the money raised by staff for the The Give A Duck Foundation has been matched funded by the company. Combined, the funds raised will help pay for 13 Chemo Ducks for children battling cancer.

Our charitable aim, acting as a front-line ambassador within the engineering sector, is to focus on those less fortunate and to create a better environment for all.

Richard Osbond, Director at Curtins said:

“It’s important to us that we make a measurable impact on our community and so we’re delighted to have been able to support this extremely worthy charity, which is local to our office in Leeds. We hope that the money raised will help provide some comfort to children suffering from this horrible disease.”

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Curtins has joined the government’s Kickstart Scheme

Date: 22nd October 2021

Curtins has joined the government’s Kickstart Scheme

We are pleased to announce that Curtins has enrolled in the Kickstart Scheme. This is a government funded programme to provide paid placements for young people who have been out of work for some time and equip them with employability skills so that they are in a better position to find work in the future.  

Improving social mobility and providing opportunities for young people was part of our founder’s ethos, and we maintain this today in our desire to positively impact on the communities we serve and leave a lasting legacy.  

Social mobility in the UK has been declining for several years, and according to statistics published by the government, over half of the public believe that the pandemic has increased social inequality, with a worsening impact on housing, finances and job prospects.  

As part of the Kickstart Scheme, we will be providing 6-month placements, initially in our Liverpool and Manchester offices, that will include support for young people to help them find work after their time with us. We hope to be able to expand the placements to some of our other offices in the new year.  

The Kickstart trainees will have the chance to develop technical STEM skills through working with our teams across specialisms – opening up career paths for them in engineering, transport planning and environmental services.  

For Curtins, the programme will help us widen our demographic of talent within the business and welcome new ideas, enthusiasm and digital know-how. 

We hope that by providing these opportunities in a supportive and safe environment we can make a small but important step to improving the prospects of these young people and helping to overturn the downwards trajectory of social mobility in the UK, with the support of the government and the Social Mobility Pledge.  

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Curtins welcomes new Technical Director in our Bristol office

Date: 22nd September 2021

Curtins welcomes new Technical Director in our Bristol office

Curtins are delighted to announce that Mat McNab has joined our Bristol office as Technical Director to support the expanding team. With over 30 years in industry, Mat brings a wealth of knowledge and joins us from Ramboll, where he was responsible for Technical Excellence.

Mat has significant senior management experience and a wide-ranging project portfolio of landmark projects. From the visitors’ centre at Stonehenge to the biomass conversion of Drax Power Station, he has delivered offices, schools, hospitals, care homes and residential schemes that impressively range from £5m to £300m and complement Curtins’ own sector diversity.

Mat will assist office Director, Stephen Beggs in growing the Bristol team and delivering Curtins’ unrivalled service recognised by our clients in the southwest market and beyond.

As a leading consultancy, we can offer all of our seven specialisms from our Bristol office, which include civils, structures, transport planning, geo-environmental, infrastructure, principal designer and conservation engineering services.

Our current projects include the upward extension of a landmark building in Aztec West, the design of the largest student residential Passivhaus project in Europe at UWE, new facilities for Guide Dogs for the Blind and Dorset Police, and the development of the St Mary Le Port site in Bristol, which Mat will lead once it receives planning permission.

Mat McNab comments: “I’m excited to join the fantastic Curtins team at a time when the industry is undergoing huge transformation, and I’m looking forward to working with the team to deliver the great projects we have.

“Taking a sustainable approach to design has always been important to me and it will be very rewarding to continue taking Curtins’ industry leading approach to carbon reduction.

“This, and the potential promised by digitalisation, are the two biggest challenges we face as an industry. I look forward to helping Curtins continue to rise to the digitalisation challenge.  

“I’m delighted to be joining a company that is owned by its staff and has an ethos of truly looking after them.

In his previous role, Mat was responsible for leading Ramboll’s Digital and Innovation drive and Project and Design Management. He will be assisting Curtins to further mature our established approach to digital delivery over the coming years.

Stephen Beggs, office Director, added: “We’re so pleased that Mat has joined Curtins. He brings significant technical and commercial experience which will strengthen our team greatly. I’m excited at the prospect of moving forward together with Mat and our established team in Bristol.

To contact Mat, please email mat.mcnab@curtins.com or call the office on 0117 302 7560.