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Materials in Construction

Construction uses large amounts of structural materials, an area in which the UK has considerable expertise. Building materials are also used in large volume so a small reduction in cost or improvement in properties has a large economic effect.

There is a range of activities going on with the construction sector in the UK many of which relate to materials and which could derive useful lessons for materials applications in other areas. MatUK establishing this Working Group for materials in construction to build on the very successful events the Materials IGT ran with the Construction Products Association (CPA). The latter will lead this group for MatUK.

Major drivers for the future in construction include affordable housing, renewal of infrastructure, and buildings that can be easily adapted for change of use or style of living or working or deconstructed optimising re-use and recycling of the constituent materials. The impact of surroundings on worker productivity is now an acknowledged fact. Modular off-site construction is growing and needs to be exploited by UK firms.

Construction materials will also be important in any attempts to improve sustainability and to make better use of energy. Buildings are a major user of energy - cutting heat loss from buildings can make a large contribution to reducing climate change.


Philip Ramsey, Pilkington

John Tebbit, Construction Products Association (CPA)


Materials UK Construction Working Group - Next Meeting

This meeting was provisionally arranged meeting for February 15th 2008please note that this meeting has been postponed and that a new date and venue will be advised in due course. This is due to the Chairman and Secretary continuing meetings with various bodies that already fund construction related research to ascertain the best way forward for the MatUK construction materials research agenda to be coordinated with current funding models.

John Tebbit
Construction Products Association


Recent Working Group Documents

Meeting of 11th December 2007

CWG 016 Briefing from chairman for meeting (PDF 103KB)
CWG 017 Notes of the meeting (PDF 25KB)

Meeting of 14th September

CWG 013 Agenda (PDF 16KB)
CWG 014 Briefing from chairman for meeting (PDF 14KB)
CWG 015 Notes of the meeting (PDF 36KB)



Materials R&D Challenges in House Building - Community Meeting, Tuesday 3rd July 2007

With Government targets for zero carbon homes by 2016, the need to address energy and sustainability in the existing stock and the ever increasing competitive situation, innovation in products and materials is crucial.

As part of the group’s work to both set a strategic research agenda for the next 5-20 years and a plan to make it happen, a Community meeting was held on 3rd July at DTI’s offices at 151 Buckingham Palace Road in London. This focussed on housebuilding, new and existing, public and private, to establish the key issues for the sector.

The outcomes and presentations from this meeting are available for download in PDF format below. To view or download the file, click on the PDF link and the file will open in a new window.

Meeting Attendance PDF 28KB
Philip Ramsey, Chair, Construction Group
Efficiency of Energy Use - The Role of Materials
Professor Michael Kelly, Chief Scientific Advisor, CLG
What Designers need from Industry
Rory Bergin, HTA Architects
Renewable Materials in Construction
Pete Walker, BRE Trust Chair, Innovative Construction Materials
Sustainable Construction Strategy
Jeremy Sumeray
Report of Meeting PDF 30KB



Working Group Documents

The Working Group has held a number of meetings. Documents from these meetings are available for download below. To view or download the documents, please click the document links below.

First Meeting - 19th September 2006

The Way Forward (PDF 21KB)
Agenda (PDF 15KB)
Minutes (PDF 28KB)

Second Meeting - 12th January 2007

Agenda (PDF 19KB)
Minutes (PDF 38KB)
Supporting Documents
Energy Working Group Terms of Reference (PDF 54KB)
Materials KTN Article (PDF 694KB)
Draft Terms of Reference (PDF 44KB)

Third Meeting - 26th March 2007

Agenda (PDF 15KB)
Minutes (PDF 38 KB)
Supporting Documents
Terms of Reference (PDF 113KB)
Masonry Presentation (PDF 118KB)
Timber Presentation (PDF 17KB)
Concrete and Cement Presentation (PDF 23KB)
Composites Presentation (PDF 122KB)
Glass Presentation (PDF 64KB)



Quick Links

Materials UK Construction Working Group - Next Meeting

Recent Working Group Documents

Materials R&D Challenges in House Building - Community Meeting, Tuesday 3rd July 2007

Working Group Documents


Last Updated 26/1/08