MJ Church, the civil engineering, plant, transport and waste solutions group, has seen a buoyant start to 2017 which follows on from a full 2016.
The groups contracting division, which operates in the civil engineering sector, has grown in recent years picking up major contracts including a £15m project with Balfour Beatty converting a strip of the M3 in Surrey to a ‘smart motorway’ which completes in the spring of 2017, the £3M conversion of Pinhoe Quarry in Devon for residential development and major works for Wavin Group in Wiltshire. New contracts for early 2017 including a £4M Park and Ride at J23 M5 for Hinkley Point, £3M capacity improvements to J16 M4 for Hochtief, £2M railway cutting stabilisation at Horfield Cutting with Vinci Construction, the development of Lockleaze Sports Facility for Bristol City Council and a £5.5m contract at Venn Quarry, Barnstaple where developer Habitat First Group are transforming the quarry into an eco-holiday village and nature reserve.
Steve Blower, managing director at MJ Church said, “The civil engineering sector has held up well for us in recent years. With the Governments focus on infrastructure, particularly to support the housing planned by 2020, we see a good pipeline of projects coming forward. However, still for the industry is the skills issue. MJ Church have been striving to ensure we have a strong and well skilled workforce and have been working with partners to ensure we invest in our future workforce. Our Civil Engineering Academy in partnership with Wiltshire College has 8 students studying for a BTEC Level 3 and Extended Diploma; we are now conducting interviews for the September intake and are getting a good deal more interest from young people as an alternative course to A Levels.”
Waste management at MJ Church has seen a real change in the last couple of years, the group now operates five transfer station in the region covering the Bristol, Bath and Swindon region. Waste collections are increasing in all areas from event waste management through to commercial and domestic waste services. Construction and demolition waste management is also growing with major contracts with the region’s main construction companies and new partnership with Aspire Defence in the Salisbury area. Diverting waste from landfill has been a major development for the company with over 700 tonnes a week of non-recyclable waste being sent to ‘Waste to Energy’ plants in Devon and Avonmouth. Some 10,500 homes were powered by RDF energy last year using MJ Church waste.
The group has also continued investment in its transport and plant business – a 25-unit deal was completed for new MAN Tipper Euro 6 Tipper Trucks, 6 new Caterpillar D6 Dozers, 10 Bell B30E Articulated Dump Trucks and 2 Mercedes AROCS low loaders were procured along with a 2-year deal with Toyota for over 60 Hilux vehicles, typically used by site teams, and further deals with Ford on vans for site and fleet support.
Tom Church, director believes the business is now well positioned for the future, “We have seen good growth over that last few years growing to a £50m turnover, circa 450 employee business. We are mindful of the uncertainly around Brexit and the economic environment, particularly as a diverse business we see both positive and negative impacts on the business. Last year we invested in new systems and technology for the group, putting in new IT systems and moving to new practices on waste management to ensure we are on track for our aspiration of continued excellent customer service and significant growth in the next 5 years.”