Dominick Sandford, Managing Director at IronmongeryDirect and ElectricalDirect, says: “Last year saw yet more turbulence for UK construction, but the latest figures show that the industry ended 2021 on a real high.
“The value of new orders rose by 9.2% between Q3 and Q4 to an impressive £13.3bn, which is the highest figure in over four years, since Q3 in 2017.
“It also represents a 35% increase year-on-year, up from £9.9bn in Q4 2020, showing a real surge in momentum.
“The infrastructure sector drove the largest rise in new orders; at the end of 2021, the value of new orders rose by 23% from £1.7bn to £2.1bn.
“The private industrial sector also performed well and reported the second most significant increase (22% – up to £1.9bn).
“They still have some way to go to catch the highest value sector though, with private commercial construction rising 14% to remain in the lead (£3.8bn).
“Not all sectors saw growth, however, with housing in particular having a slow end to the year. The value of new public housing projects dropped by 19%, from £426m down to £345m, and private housing was also down (-0.4%, down to £3.7bn).
“As well as variation between sectors, the figures also contrast dramatically across the UK. By far the largest increase was seen in the North East of England, where the value of new orders trebled (200%) from £575m to £1.7bn.
“In London, the value fell by 15%, but at £3.8bn, the capital remains top of the list for regions.
“Overall, the new data shows that UK construction is in a really positive place. With expensive new orders being placed all over the country, it’s a clear display of confidence in the industry.
“Hopefully this trend will continue into 2022.”