Two education contracts helped firm beat July’s 15% decline in new work for top firms

The summer slowdown knocked 15% off the value of projects won by the top 10 contractors last month.

Contracts worth £705m were won by the industry’s leading firms in July, down from £834m the previous month.

But Willmott Dixon bucked the seasonal trend to storm up eight places and claim the top spot, winning £146m worth of work.

Willmott was helped to the win by two major education contracts, including a £33m deal with the University of Cambridge to build a new building for its department of materials science and metallurgy.

A further £19m contract to build the Skinners’ Kent Academy for Kent council added to the haul.

Bam Construct also climbed five places to take second place, boosted again by two lucrative education contracts in Scotland to build high schools for East Renfrewshire (£28m) and Midlothian (£35m) councils.

Balfour Beatty spent another rare month out of the top 10 in 12th place, but again led the table for work won over the whole year with almost as much work won as the second to fourth-placed contractors combined.

Housing experienced a sluggish July with £112m of work won by the top 10 housebuilders, its worst month for over a year.

Public sector work also dropped for the third month in a row, with only £384m contracts gained by the leading contractors.

Among the regions, the Midlands had a bumper month, with £777m worth of work won by the top 10, making it the most active region, ahead of £355m won in the South-east.

Among the large contracts won was a £29m retirement village in Hagley Road, Birmingham, won by Galliford Try.

To see last month’s top 100 contractors click here