Winner — Wates group

The bin man must be a huge fan of any site run by Wates – there is very little for him to do there. By 2010 he probably needn’t even bother turning up as by then Wates aims to send 0% of its waste to landfill sites. It is already well on the way to achieving this, as one division, Wates Interiors, has cut its landfill contribution by 70% already. But what else was there that led the company to be ranked in the top 100 in the UK with a score of 69% in Business in the Community’s corporate social responsibility index? For starters Wates was last year awarded Investors in People status; it aims to have no injuries at all on its sites by 2010 and has already cut minor injuries by 32% in 2005. And it even held its inaugural Wates Community Day last September. Next on Wates’ list is the rest of the construction industry with a report published last December detailing precisely how the whole sector can be sustainable.

Runners up

Barratt Developments

Despite beating our winner’s score in the Business in the Community index with a score of 77%, Barratt is once again a runner up for this award. However, it now has a new corporate responsibility management system in place, which has helped it cut its accident rate in half in 2005. It also has the most apprentices in the industry and has cut its average waste produced per development by 100 tonnes, so it might just take the top spot next time around.


In the past year Keepmoat has cut its accident rate on site by 59% despite a 39% increase in staff numbers and has become the first construction company to win a third successive NHBC “excellent” rating for health and safety. So it is perhaps appropriate that the regeneration specialist has begun supporting the Outward Bound Trust, which provides adventure and educational holidays for teenagers. You never know, maybe some of them might end up on its training and apprenticeship programme.

Willmott Dixon housing

The key phrase for Willmott Dixon in its 2006 “More Than Just Homes” CSR report is: keep it simple. It’s an approach that seems to be working with £2000 spent on training per head of staff in 2005 and – to date – no prohibition notices received from the Health and Safety Executive. Willmott Dixon has also turned a keen eye on the future by providing staff to help a school in Finchley, London to pilot the new construction GCSE.

Wilson Bowden

Wilson Bowden has not only ensured that its offices are powered from 100% renewable energy sources but that all of its new homes are, too. Overall this will lead to an annual reduction in carbon dioxide emission of more than 6200 tonnes. In its fifth year of producing a CSR report it has planted 431,973 shrubs, 21,215 trees and created 611 acres of open space. Wilson Bowden has also introduced a waste management strategy and halved the number of falls from height last year.