Lords to debate off-site manufacture in construction today (12 December)

The Lords will debate off-site manufacturing in construction today (12 December).

The House of Lords will today (Wednesday, 12 December) debate the Science & Technology Committee’s report Off-site manufacture for construction: building for change, which says offsite manufacture is the only way the government has a hope of reaching its targets for infrastructure and house building (read more...).

Among those listed to speak are several members of the Science & Technology Committee, including Lord Fox, Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and Lord Mair, Past President of the Institution of Civil Engineers.

The debate is being moved by Lord Patel, Chair of the Science & Technology Committee. Lord Henley, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, will respond on behalf of the Government.

In the report, published in July, the Committee warned that the construction sector as it currently operates cannot meet the UK’s need for housing and may struggle to meet the need for infrastructure. Given that the UK already lags behind other countries in construction productivity and is facing a labour shortage exacerbated by Brexit, the Government and the construction sector must urgently find solutions.

The Committee said that off-site manufacture can help to increase productivity in the construction sector while reducing labour demands, improving the quality and efficiency of buildings and reducing the environmental impacts associated with traditional construction.

The report, and the Government’s response to it, are available on the Committee’s website, under the 'Latest Publications' heading.