Workers at SME contractors are set for a 2% pay rise this year following a 12-month pay freeze

Negotiations between employers and the unions, via the Building and Allied Trades Joint Industrial Council, have concluded with an agreement for a 2% increase to standard rates from 13 September.

Bob Blackman, national secretary for construction at Unite, said: “Although the settlement is not as generous as we would have liked, we have to acknowledge that the industry is still in decline and that any recovery will be slow.

“As such the preservation of jobs must remain a priority for our members while still trying to do what we can to lessen the impact of what has been a savage recession in the sector.”