Construction activity returned to pre-lockdown levels last month, with contract awards increasing by 58% over March to £9.1billion – a level of activity last seen in January 2020, according to the latest edition of the Economic & Construction Market Review from industry analysts Barbour ABI.

Residential was among the leaders with further growth from £2billion to £2.5billion 

Sector analysis shows that residential contract awards increase again in April to £2.5 billion, up from £2.0 billion in March. A strong performance for infrastructure, with total value of contract awards reaching £2.1 billion, the first monthly value over £2.0 billion since January 2020. And the industrial sector activity sees the second highest monthly value on record of £1.2 billion in April, driven once again by warehousing. 

Tom Hall, Chief Economist at Barbour ABI and AMA Research said: “A year on from the start of the Covid-19 pandemic we have finally seen a value that starts to recover some of the lost ground. However, a fall in April’s planning approvals back to previous levels seen over the second half of 2020 may demonstrate that the uncertainty plaguing the sector has not fully cleared. We require a sustained increase over a period of time to fill the weak construction pipeline.”