A BAM construction manager whose site is opposite Newcastle United’s St James’ Park has come up with the idea of a football-themed billboard to attract new talent into the construction industry.
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.
BAM has left a space for passers-by to pose with the team and take photos.
Madge is a Newcastle United fan but has used the company’s green and orange colours for the team kit, to avoid clashes with other fans. His team, which includes gatemen, site managers, engineers, building services managers, site managers and apprentices, supports several teams including Barnsley, Liverpool, Sunderland and Leeds.
Madge said: “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.”
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 also donating football kit to local schools, and supporting the ‘show racism the red card’ campaigns.
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.”