Have you ever considered attending UK construction events? Employing over 3.1 million people, the construction sector is one of the largest workforces in the UK economy. So, it’s no surprise that there are dozens of different construction industry events happening in 2022 and 2023.

Attending these events is a great way to keep abreast of the current happenings in the UK construction industry. From seminars and workshops to trade shows and exhibitions, these events provide insight into the latest innovations and news in the industry.

A busy booth at a construction event

Why Should You Attend Construction Events?

As a player in the UK construction sector, it would be wise to add industry-related events to your schedule. Besides the overall experience these events offer, there are plenty of other benefits for you and your business. These include:

●    Exposure

Attending construction events helps you gain exposure to new trends, products, and innovations in the sector. This exposure to recent developments in the industry helps you become more productive in your work and set new goals. It also allows you to adopt innovations that will foster the growth of your business. You also become conversant with new regulations and discoveries in the industry.

●    Networking

While it is possible to see familiar faces at an event, there is no doubt that you will also meet new people. Attending events allows you to network with other people in the industry and build new business relationships. You can learn from and possibly work with or gain a referral from some of the people you meet at an event.

●    Competitive Edge

Being present at trade shows or exhibitions helps you become aware of what the competition has been up to. You get to see what your competitors have achieved so far. The goal is to learn from them as you compare their strengths and weaknesses to yours.

●    Lead Generation

By networking at events, you can generate leads for your business. You can generate leads by exchanging business cards, pitching an idea to potential investors, scanning visitor badges or speaking at a panel session. It is one effective way of getting people to purchase your product or service – or at least getting them thinking about it.

●    Publicity

It will take a lot to appear on the cover of a leading magazine in the industry. It will also cost you some cash to advertise your business in a newspaper. However, you can get free publicity by attending events.

You expose yourself to press connections when you participate in seminars or workshops, which are often covered by various industry publications.

Five Biggest Construction Industry Events in the UK

  1. London Build Expo

Currently regarded as one of the leading exhibitions in the world, the London Build Expo is an award-winning show held in the United Kingdom every year. Annually, the Expo has over 27,000 attendees and 500+ top-level speakers across six conference theatres.

The event allows attendees to interact with and learn from senior-level decision-makers and influencers in the construction industry. The London Build Expo was a finalist in the Best Trade Show category at the AEO Awards.

The 2022 edition of the London Build Expo will be in London Olympia from 16 – 17 November 2022.

Learn more about London Build.

2.  UK Construction Week

UK Construction Week (UKCW) is the UK’s largest built environment event. With over 30,000 attendees, it offers something for all kinds of built environment professionals. With exhibitors including architects, developers, merchants and distribution companies, as well as a host of education and training professionals from within the industry, there’s something for everyone at UK Construction Week.

The show has two editions every year, one in London and one at the NEC in Birmingham. UKCW Birmingham will be from 4-6 October 2022, while the next UKCW London will be 2-4 May 2023.

Learn more about UK Construction Week.

PlanRadar's stand at Digital Construction Week 2022, sales reps meeting many visitors to the stand.

3. Digital Construction Week

Digital Construction Week is the show to attend for anyone interested in using digital tools for construction. More than 150 companies attend to showcase their latest technology and digital solutions, and it’s often the place to be for product launches. Attendees also benefit from over 120 hours of lectures and demonstrations by speakers from the industry.

With 5,800 attendees, this show is slightly smaller than others on our list, but the audience is very focused on digital construction. If you’re interested in ConTech or PropTech, you won’t want to miss it. The next edition of Digital Construction Week takes place at ExCel London on 17-18 May 2023. Hopefully, we’ll see you there!

Read more about tickets and exhibiting at Digital Construction Week.

4.  London Homebuilding and Renovating Show

The London Homebuilding and Renovating Show is well attended by self-builders and renovators.

The show allows attendees to learn about the latest planning regulations for different areas in a building design and how to manage renovation budgets. From seminars to masterclasses, this show provides people with free advice on self-building, renovation, and DIY projects. The exhibition also enables one-on-one consultations with top-level industry players.

The 2022 edition of the London Homebuilding Show will be held from 30th September – 2nd October at Excel London. The event is organised by Future Publishing Limited.

Read more about the Homebuilding & Renovating Show here.

5.  Futurebuild

Formerly known as Ecobuild, Futurebuild is a curated exhibition in the UK where manufacturers and suppliers can showcase the latest innovative technology in the industry. Many leading thinkers and influential personalities in the industry attend the annual event.

The show was established to promote sustainability in the construction sector and lead the drive for net-zero buildings. The show is divided into six areas of interest: resourceful materials, interiors, offsite construction, critical infrastructure, energy and buildings. That means that there’s something for both generalists and specialists to discover.

The next edition of the Futurebuild exhibition will be held from 7-9 March 2023 at Excel, London.

Find out more about Futurebuild here.

5 Niche Construction Industry Events

Sometimes, you might not be interested in a sprawling event. You might be a specialist contractor or engineer, or maybe you need a bit of extra education or training before you start your next project. Luckily, there are many niche UK construction events to choose from. We’ve picked our favourites here:

1. The Offsite Construction Show

The Offsite Construction Show, or simply The Offsite Show, is one of the UK’s most innovative shows, allowing visitors to learn about the latest offsite techniques and solutions. Thousands of people attend the expo every year to meet with major industry stakeholders. The show has also obtained major endorsement from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy.

The Offsite Show takes place during UK Construction Week, meaning that you can visit both at the same location. The next edition will be at London ExCel on 2 – 4 May 2023.

To find out more, visit The Offsite Show’s website.

2. Utility Week Live

Utility Week Live is an annual two-day conference dedicated to discussing and solving the challenges faced by the different UK utility companies. Featuring over 200 exhibitors and 150 speakers, it’s the place to be if you work in the energy, water and gas industries. It’s also a great place for those with a general construction background to learn more about the specific problems and innovations coming from the utility industry.

The next Utility Week Live will be at NEC Birmingham on 16 – 17 May 2023.

Read more about Utility Week Live.

3.  The UK Concrete Show

The UK Concrete Show is the biggest event focused on concrete in Europe. Hundreds of exhibitors from more than 20 countries attend the event to showcase their innovative products. If you’re a supplier and you have a new product to launch, this is the place to be.

Attendees also get to learn from educative seminars and browse the latest technologies and products in the concrete space. They also have the opportunity of networking with suppliers in the concrete subindustry. The next edition of The UK Concrete Show will be held from 15th – 16th March 2023 at NEC, Birmingham.

4.  Highways UK

For those who work in infrastructure, Highways UK is definitely a must-attend event. With a great range of attendees and several different streams of talks and expert discussions, this is the show to be for anyone who wants to work on the nation’s road network.

Speakers, sponsors and exhibitors are the people who plan, build, manage and maintain roads across the UK, so there’s scope for all kinds of interesting conversations to be had. Highways UK also offers special packages to start-ups, making it easier for small businesses to attend. The next show will be at the NEC, Birmingham, from 2 – 3 November 2022.

Find out more about Highways UK here.

5. Firex

Firex International hosts experts in fire safety from around Europe – and beyond! Visitors include members of the entire fire safety supply chain, including construction, facilities services, installers and IT providers to local government representatives and members of education and training organisations. In addition to meeting exhibitors, visitors can experience an agenda of speakers diving into the latest topics in fire safety.

In 2023, Firex International will be held from 16 to 18 May at ExCel London.

Find out more about Firex International here.

6.  The Fire Safety Event

The Fire Safety Event is the largest exhibition for fire safety in the UK. The exhibition showcases all kinds of fire safety, prevention and protection methods and technologies. Attendees can also enjoy seminars and talks that cover the latest topics in fire safety and building safety. Some of these are even CPD accredited.

The 2023 edition of The Fire Safety Event will be coming up on 25 – 27 April 2023 at NEC, Birmingham.

Book your place now at the event’s official website.

Four Interesting Regional Construction Events

As you’ve been reading this article, you probably noticed that most major events take place in two locations: London and Birmingham. While these are well-connected cities with huge event spaces, there are plenty of exceptional construction events in other parts of the UK. Here are some of our favourite regional events:

1. The Welsh Construction Shows

The Welsh Construction Shows are actually two annual shows, one held in Cardiff, the other in Swansea. The shows bring together different kinds of suppliers and trades for a day of networking, information exchange and education. Alongside over 70 exhibitors there are also several seminars about digital transformation, changes to insurance laws and other relevant topics.

The next Welsh Construction Show will be held at Swansea’s Liberty Stadium on 5th October 2022, with the next Cardiff show following in 2023.

For more information about attending or exhibiting, check out the official website.

2.  Scotland Development Conference

The Scotland Development Conference is an industry event held in Edinburgh, Scotland. The conference is an avenue for stakeholders in the construction business to meet, discuss, unveil the latest developments, and set new plans for the industry.

The event also enables leaders in the private and public sectors to speak and share ideas on how to improve the industry, especially Scotland’s increasing housing challenge and ongoing infrastructure projects.

Put together by Built Environment Networking Limited, 2022’s edition of the conference is slated for the 26th of September at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

To learn more about the event, visit Built Environment Networking’s website.

3.  Regen Conference and Exhibition

The Regen conference is a free-to-attend event held in Liverpool, England. The annual show also doubles as an exhibition. It focuses on improving the economic status of the UK via both urban and rural regeneration projects across the country.

The event aims to help exhibitors showcase their products and services, introduce innovative technologies into the market and enable attendees to build long-lasting business relationships via networking. There will be over 50 exhibitors and 24 speakers, plus a drinks reception at the end of the sessions on the first day. The next edition will be on 2-3 November 2022 at St George’s Hall.

To save a spot for yourself, visit regenfuture.co.uk/

4.  Northern Ireland Offsite Construction Conference

This annual conference covers the latest developments in offsite construction and innovative digital technology used in buildings design and construction. The conference focuses on improving the knowledge of stakeholders for the benefit of building new houses quickly and efficiently.

Its location in Belfast means that you’re more likely to connect with Irish and Northern Irish companies than you would at The Offsite Event in London, although the subjects covered are reasonably similar.

The conference was last held on the 23rd of June 2022 at the Titanic Exhibition Centre, Belfast. Keep a look out for the next date by checking the official event website.

Conclusion

The first step to getting the best out of industry-related events is consciously deciding to attend them. Add these events to your schedule, keep track of them, and keep an eye out for opportunities, as there are many for individuals and businesses. Once you’ve picked which events you’ll be attending, check the organisers’ website to see if there are any exhibitors or speakers that you would definitely like to speak to.

On the day, make sure that you have business cards ready to share. Apart from that, attend with an open mind, be ready to network and above all enjoy the ideas and energy that UK construction events always offer their visitors.

Come and meet PlanRadar at the top UK construction events

Another great way to level up in the construction scene is to adopt the latest construction tech solutions like PlanRadar. Planradar is a construction site management software that helps users monitor their project progress, stay on schedule, and increase productivity. It’s a great way to keep track of everything happening on-site and demonstrate your progress to your clients.

You can access the platform via iOS and Android mobile devices or any browser. Using PlanRadar, construction team members can view 2D plans and 3D models on their phones. They can also easily communicate with their teams, subcontractors, and other project stakeholders.

You can meet our team of experts at several of these industry events. If you’re attending, contact us to book a meeting or just swing by our stand to say hello!