East Anglian independent timber and builders merchant Ridgeons has triumphed in an industry skills challenge at Cambridge Regional College.
The team of four took first place in the Institute of Builders’ Merchants (IoBM) competition, designed to put their practical skills to the test and improve the knowledge of the products they sell.
The competition, held in CRC’s new £3 million construction workshop, attracted eight teams from builders merchants across the country, including Travis Perkins, EH Smith and Howarth Timber.
TV carpenter and joiner Stewart Parker, the star of 60 Minute Makeover and brand ambassador for Reisser screws, presented the prizes to the Ridgeons team – based in Cambridge and Diss – and runners-up Howarth Timber.
The day-long hands-on test, judged by CRC lecturer Roger Havis, included carpentry and brickwork challenges, painting, paving and simple electrics – with good teamwork proving a vital component.
Steve Sellick, president of the Institute of Builders’ Merchants, said the standard of work in the competition had been very impressive.
“Everyone who took part deserves congratulations,” said Sellick. “We’d like to say a big thank you to them all and to the suppliers who donated the materials used in the competition.
“We are also very grateful to Stewart Parker for coming along for the day and presenting the prizes.”
John Malone, head of CRC’s Construction and Engineering faculty, said the college had been very pleased to host the competition again.
“This is the first time the skills challenge has been held in our new construction workshop and it proved the perfect setting, with plenty of room for all the teams,” he said. “We were delighted to host the competition, and offer our congratulations to Ridgeons for taking first place.”
All the competitors were given a free one-year student membership of the Institute of Builders Merchants.
The businesses taking part in the competition were Travis Perkins, Haworth Timber, Ridgeons, Jackson Building Centres, Didac Training, EH Smith, Collier and Catchpole, PGR Builders and Timber Merchants and Parker BS.