Judging the Bricks. Step 2: External Works

The Bricks, our annual awards, celebrates excellence in the construction industry by recognising quality built developments that stand out from the crowd. But what are our judges looking for when they inspect? What is it that makes a development a Bricks Award winner? Read on to find out how you maximise your chances of winning.

External work might be the last thing you work on during the build process, but it’s the first thing that potential buyers see, so excellence in this area is incredibly important. Under the external works category our judges review:

  • Drainage
  • Retaining walls and free standing walls
  • Footpaths, driveway and hard standing

Below Mike Swatton, our Head Judge, goes into detail on just what we look for when inspecting External Works on site.

“When looking at external work, curb appeal is vitally important, first impressions mean a lot. We’re looking at the cleanliness of the finished product externally - boundary walls, retaining walls, paving and coverings outside. Landscaping must not be too high in relation to the damp proof course.

Down to detail we’re looking at inspection chambers and manholes, to make sure they’re in the right locations, not right in the middle of a path by the front door, which never bodes well for quality.

Vitally important are drainage services, these must be laid in line to the correct fall and to the correct gradient. They must be bedded on the correct material and properly supported from below and when they go into the building supported from above to ensure they don’t get crushed or damaged.

Looking externally all the way around the envelope of a building, make sure the quality is sound.”


Best Practise

Chapter 11 of our Technical Manual is devoted solely to External Works and goes into detail on how to achieve compliance with our functional requirements. 
Download Technical Manual: Chapter 11


Please Note: Every care was taken to ensure the information in this article was correct at the time of publication. Any written guidance provided does not replace the reader’s professional judgement and any construction project should comply with the relevant Building Regulations or applicable technical standards. However, for the most up to date LABC Warranty technical guidance please refer to your Risk Management Surveyor and the latest version of the LABC Warranty technical manual.


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