Craig Madge, a project manager for BAM which is building a new headquarters building for housing association Home Group at One Strawberry Lane, has erected a giant image of his site team, complete with their roles, on the hoardings outside the multi-million pound scheme.

Some 50,000 people pass the hoardings under normal circumstances. BAM has left a space for passers-by to pose with the team and take photos. Craig hopes the innovative idea will both engage local people positively with the new building, and also provoke some of those it attracts to look into a possible future construction career.

Craig’s team includes gatemen, planners, site managers, engineers, building services managers and site managers – as well as apprentices. 

“I don’t think people realise how many roles the industry offers, and how digital our world has become. There’s a lot of technology involved now before we set foot here on site, especially because of how complex this area is to build in above and below ground. We have to build around the Metro and very proximate buildings.

“I hope the hoarding will cause younger people in particular to give our industry some thought.”

Craig Madge

Project Manager for One Strawberry Lane

Once complete the new building will home one of the biggest housing associations in the UK, delivering new homes and houses for affordable rent in addition to long-term integrated housing, health and social care.

BAM is reinforcing the football motif by donating football kit to local schools, and supporting the ‘show racism the red card’ campaigns.

Newcastle-born and bred Craig is a Magpies fan but he’s used the company’s distinctive green and orange colours for the team kit, to avoid clashes with other fans.  In fact, his team supports several teams including Barnsley, Liverpool, Sunderland and Leeds.

“Here I am in my home city, building state of the art offices of the future, and my industry has a need to attract and retain talented people. Who they cheer on is not important we need youngsters of all kinds to work in our exciting workplace.”

Tony Fitzgerald, BAM’s Construction Director for the North East, said: 

“The Office of National Statistics reported job vacancies in construction returning to pre-pandemic levels with 28,000 vacancies in the industry. We have committed to creating local jobs and training opportunities, and making a difference in the Newcastle West End community through the delivery of the project for the Home Group and Newcastle City Council.

“The North East region in Newcastle & Teesside has seen a real surge in construction opportunities over this last year despite the pandemic. There is a great opportunity in our industry for young people with diverse skills to get not just a job but also a long-term career.”

Tony Fitzgerald

Construction Director BAM North East

BAM is planning to support local residents and young people by delivering community action projects in the West End aimed at enhancing local people’s lives following the pandemic.

Down the coast from Home Group headquarters BAM is behind the new Regent Cinema in Redcar and Middlesbrough’s Northern School of Art. Elsewhere in the UK it is behind Sky Studios which is developing the most sustainable studios in the world, and a second Arena for Manchester, the largest in Europe.