Stepnell completes Health & Medical Education Facility

Category: Construction

A new Centre for Health and Medical Education at the University of Worcester has now been completed by Stepnell. This is the fourth project the complete construction partner has delivered on behalf of the University.

Starting on site at the University’s Severn Campus in 2021, the highly anticipated project has involved the delivery of a sophisticated anatomy laboratory, a suite of GP simulation rooms, and a range of general seminar and teaching rooms. Offices, break-out spaces for group study and a café have also been constructed by Stepnell.

Adrian Barnes, regional director at Stepnell said: “The Elizabeth Garrett Anderson building is our fourth project with University of Worcester and shows the success of our collaborative approach in creating lasting partnerships. Having this strong relationship helps to mitigate any risks to maintain the end goal of delivering a high quality project in time and to budget, which is what we have achieved. “The building is uniquely enveloped with gold copper shingle and is flooded with natural light from the impressive North light roof structures, so it was a priority to use our experience to ensure the redevelopment project would retain the legacy of this 1965 building, while delivering on sustainability and creating a modern teaching space. Throughout, we were also pleased to work with the University and its students and put in place measures to reduce emissions.”

Working in close collaboration with the University of Worcester, Stepnell added social and environmental value throughout. This included supporting local students with training opportunities and creating several sustainability initiatives to reduce emissions. The Stepnell team encouraged the use of public transport, walking and cycling and installed a biosite system to help track site visitors, deliveries and reduce worker emissions as part of a green travel plan that saved 122,721 transport miles.

As part of the project team, M&E consultancy CPW also provided energy modelling, strategy and design support to enhance the existing fabric of the building and reduce air permeability. This has helped achieve a Gold SKA environmental rating from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and an energy performance certificate (EPC) A rating.

Mark Evans, assistant director of Estates at the University of Worcester, said: “The University of Worcester has worked with Stepnell on a number of projects since they were appointed to our Medium Works Contractor Framework. This includes recently completing our fantastic new Elizabeth Garrett Anderson building on our Severn Campus. Stepnell has demonstrated it can work collaboratively and innovatively to deliver what the University believes will be an outstanding teaching facility for the future healthcare and medical professionals.”

NHS ward renovations completed in Bath

Category: Construction

Renovations to four wards for Royal United Hospitals (RUH) Bath NHS Foundation Trust have now been completed by complete construction partner and healthcare building specialists, Stepnell.

As part of the £2 million renovation works, Stepnell installed 28 new ensuites across the hospital’s Haygarth, Forrester Brown, Pierce and Acute Stroke Unit wards. An existing bathroom was also converted into a storeroom in the Acute Stroke Unit and additional drainage and services ancillary works completed.

“These improvements are already making a real difference for the people we care for and the people we work with. We’ve had some great feedback from staff and patients.“ Daisy Nelson, project manager in the capital projects team at Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust

Additionally, new clinical utility spaces were fitted-out. An unused former bathroom was also converted into a new shared office space for nursing staff and junior doctors within the Acute Stroke Unit, a new private side room was built on Haygarth ward and redecoration works, plus additional drainage and services ancillary works, were completed throughout all four wards.

“It was especially important the project caused minimal disruption to patients and staff while completing the works, and I’m delighted that by working together we achieved this where practically possible.” “Through our extensive healthcare expertise, we worked with RUH to ensure the renovations were completed as efficiently as possible and with minimal disruption, delivering the best possible value for the trust.“ Richard Stanford Brown, senior site manager at Stepnell

The outcome is excellent and will help the hospital and its staff to meet the high health and care standards for patients, which we are incredibly pleased about.

Completed in just 23 weeks, Stepnell secured the design and build contract under the public sector-based Procure South West Framework, which is managed by the Procure Partnerships Framework (PPF).

To complete the scheme, Stepnell undertook local supply chain spending and engaged with a local supply chain of subcontractors wherever possible.

“We are continuing to see an increase in projects come through with a significant proportion of our planned work with PPF projects to meet public sector demand. Our work with RUH Bath is a prime example of these quality works, which adds to our substantial portfolio of healthcare expertise.” Rob Speirs, director at Stepnell

Earth Day 2023

Category: Frameworks

22 April 2023 was EARTH DAY This year’s earth theme is ‘Invest in our planet’ together: As part of our Procure Partnerships Framework social value commitments and to mark Earth Day 2023, Stepnell, Seddon and Tilbury Douglas are working together to encourage supply chain members, colleagues, and communities to become a ‘Carbon Hero’ in support.

Did you Know Global warming caused by the emission of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses is one of the biggest threats to the environment and we can all do more to reduce our carbon footprint.

We would like to encourage everyone in our networks to sit down and spend 5 minutes calculating your carbon footprint using this handy tool:

Carbon Calculator – Climate Hero

Why should you be a carbon hero?

If you are a colleague:

  • We would like you to feel empowered by your contribution/pledge to your companies and personal goals.
  • Help us secure a future where biodiversity and public health thrive for our future generations.
  • Use a bottom-up strategy to climate change through pledges which will instigate real sustainable change to industries and government polices/agendas at all levels.

If you are part of our local community:

  • We would like you to help us make cultural change, using more public transport and cycle to work schemes
  • Reduce household waste by making better food choices and recycling packaging in the appropriate ways
  • Shopping local to help keep our local economy thrive

If you are a supply chain member:

  • Help us go green by switching to green power vehicles and using sources of renewable energy
  • Collect measurable data from customers and suppliers to create transparency
  • By using recycled packaging. Forestry products such as carboard and paper are not always from recycled or sustainable sources.

What small change can you make to become a #carbonhero?

Southern Construction Framework

Category: Construction

Complete construction partner Stepnell, has been awarded a place on the 5th generation Southern Construction Framework (SCF) Construct framework, for the new £1-5 million value lots for the South West.

Stepnell is one of six contractors awarded a place on Lot 5 of the latest SCF Construct framework, which supports public sector construction and development in the South West region. The new framework win will see Stepnell build on its presence in the region with greater collaboration, added value, project performance and quality.

Lewis Archibald, framework director, at Stepnell said: “The new framework win reflects Stepnell’s shared values with SCF and how we are committed to providing a full spectrum of construction solutions for the public sector. This is all in line with our ability to offer a truly collaborative approach to deliver high quality, best value projects with an emphasis on carbon and social value targets.”

As part of the selection process, Stepnell was assessed against strict criteria, including being able to demonstrate exemplary carbon benchmarking assessments for all builds. Additionally, Stepnell was able to show prioritised carbon retrofit capabilities, to match industry leading carbon and social value targets required by SCF.

The new generation framework will be launched in May 2023 and complements the current SCF Residential and SCF Consult frameworks, which have delivered over £8 billion worth of combined construction schemes in the last 16 years, since SCF was first established.

Tom Wakeford, managing director at Stepnell, said: “This is another fantastic example of Stepnell’s significant capabilities across offices in Wantage, Southampton, Poole and Bristol, and we look forward to bringing our longstanding public sector construction project expertise to clients in the region as part of the SCF Construct framework. I would like to congratulate the Stepnell team, who have shown exemplary skill throughout the process in order to be successful on this prestigious framework bid.”

About Southern Construction Framework (SCF)

Southern Construction Framework (SCF) is a leading construction procurement framework delivered by the public sector for the public sector in the South of England (SW, SE and London). It has delivered over £8 billion worth of combined construction schemes, helping clients to deliver around £500m building work every year since it began in 2006.

Kingsley Clarke, SCF Operations Lead, South West said: “Via our new sub £5m lots, we’ve also opened the door to SME contractors in the South West and we’re very much looking forward to working with them and their local supply chains on some innovative schemes in the region.”

SCF provides construction procurement across public sectors including education, health, sport & leisure, fire and police and Build to Rent (inc. hotels, industrial units, offices).

SCF is the market leader in Two Stage Open Book project delivery. This process supports ‘Early Contractor Involvement’, which brings together contractor, stakeholders and suppliers to deliver best quality and value for the client.

Stepnell builds partnership with college group for better futures

Category: People

A leading regional apprenticeship provider Warwickshire College Group is strengthening its relationship with a major construction contractor.

Stepnell has seen a third apprentice begin their training with college group WCG at Moreton Morrell College.

The construction business employs over 300 people and is committed to 10 percent of its overall workforce being apprentices or trainees.

WCG is the largest college provider of apprenticeship training in the region, with up to 2,000 apprentices trained every year and working with over 1,100 local, regional and national employers.

It delivers carpentry and joinery apprenticeships from Moreton Morrell College, which is one of six colleges in the group. WCG also delivers training in a wide range of construction disciplines from Rugby College and Evesham College.

Stepnell took on two apprentices in the first year of the working with WCG with focuses on site carpentry and joinery – the apprentices work day-to-day from Stepnell’s joinery workshop at its head office in Rugby.

Alex Burnett, 19 from Rugby, was one of the first two apprentices and has been studying his apprenticeship for more than a year. He had previously studied Level 1 and Level 2 carpentry at Rugby College. He said: “I found out about Stepnell through a family friend and I’ve had some brilliant opportunities since joining the company. The skills I developed in my Level 2 course have helped me to get started with my apprenticeship. I’ve been able to keep learning in college, but also learn from the very experienced people in the joinery shop.”

Harvey Heise, 17 from Leamington, is the latest Stepnell apprentice to study at WCG. He added: “I was always told by my grandad that apprenticeships were a good way to start a career and when I came across the opportunity at Stepnell I knew it was right for me. “We’re at college every Friday. I get a lot of independence there and space to learn my skills, which I can then go and use back at work. I’m really enjoying the apprenticeship so far and hopefully it will be a long-term career for me.”

Jayne Suthard, training manager, joined Stepnell in 2019 and has been supporting a recruitment drive across the business, with one aspect being engaging WCG on the training of carpentry and joinery apprentices.

“We’re proud to be working with WCG as one of our apprenticeship providers,” said Jayne. “Construction as an industry is dealing with an increasingly ageing workforce and that means its vital we start to train the next generation and attract new talent to the industry. “The apprentices have all settled in really well and they have grown to be valuable members of the team and we are already starting to see the benefits of the apprenticeship programme. We hope to be able to take on further apprentices through WCG in the coming years.”

John Colclough, Head of Business Development and Industrial Placements at WCG, added: “Our construction apprenticeship provision is of the highest standard and it is great to be able to help develop talent for a reputable business such as Stepnell. “We look forward to continuing to work closely with Jayne and her team to help provide a pipeline of skilled individuals for the business.”

WCG offers a wide range of apprenticeships in a variety of industries. For more information visit

Stepnell completes third build for care group

Category: Care

Continuing its ongoing relationship with Cinnamon Care Collection, leading UK care construction specialist Stepnell has finished design and build works on the £6.5 million 57-bed Gables Care Home in Hagley, Birmingham.

Offering specialist dementia and residential care at the luxury 55,000 sq ft premises, this is the third scheme that Stepnell has delivered for Cinnamon Care Collection, following the completion of a care home and care apartments at Eastcote Park.

Completed in 70 weeks and working to a high-end specification, the facility features a cinema room on the second floor, four private care suites, as well as landscaping works including gardens and parking.

Keen to invest in a regional supply chain, Stepnell used local brick manufacturer Ketley Brick and employed three local labourers to support the build.

Adrian Barnes, regional director at Stepnell, said: “It’s been a pleasure to work with Cinnamon Care Collection again for the creation of its new premises and we worked closely with the team to ensure this project was built on time and on budget. “Using our trusted supply chain and extensive knowledge and with the support of our consultants, Harris Irwin Architects, structural engineers ARC and M&E consultancy Harniss, we have been able to deliver the project at the best value and the highest quality.”

The facility will also offer an open spaced foyer, four dining areas, a hair, beauty and nail salon, tying in with the elegance and comfort that Cinnamon Care Collection is renowned for.

Stepnell has a long record of successful projects within the care sector – having worked across schemes to that have delivered more than 2,300 beds across care homes, sheltered accommodation and specialist facilities for dementia and palliative care, for NHS Trusts and private healthcare.

A fourth development for Cinnamon Care Collection is also in the works, with Stepnell having recently commenced on site to build Warwick Care Home – an £8.9 million project that will provide 66 beds with five care suites.

Ben Collard, development and capital investments at Cinnamon Care Collection, said: “We are delighted to have worked with Stepnell and delivered another successful care home scheme in the Midlands. The whole team was committed to quality, which is evident in the result. I look forward to working with Stepnell on future projects and to continue to develop and improve our homes.”