Wates Group, one of the UK’s leading family-owned construction, residential development, and property services businesses, has won a prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the Sustainable Development category. This year’s win makes Wates the only construction company to have won a record three times in the Sustainable Development category, having previously won the award in 2011 and 2016.
The Award, announced today, recognises Wates’ “leadership in the construction sector” as well as for “constantly evolving and developing its approach”.
Wates’ sustainability strategies have bold commitments and targets which, in collaboration with its business units, are guided by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The company has set out targets to achieve Zero Waste Carbon from its operations by 2025. Wates also works to ensure that all its projects leave a positive impact on the natural environment – partnering with customers, suppliers and other stakeholders to make sure this is achieved.
Announcing Wates’ win, the Queen’s Awards made the following comment:
“Wates Group Ltd is awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development because it clearly shows leadership in the construction sector, and the business can demonstrate how it is constantly evolving and developing its approach.”
John Dunne, safety, health, environment, quality and sustainability director, Wates Group, said:
“I am delighted that Wates has won a prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development, and in this, our 125th anniversary year. This is the third time that Wates has received this award – a record that reflects the industry leading position we have built on sustainability.
For all of us at Wates, sustainability is about more than a programme or series of interventions. It is intrinsic to the way we do business, the way we operate, and how we support, inspire, and engage others to achieve sustainable outcomes, and we are proud to have been recognised in this way.”
Wates is delivering a number of environmentally sustainable projects, including some of UK’s first net-zero schools with the Department for Education, partnering with Arup and HKS to decarbonise the NHS estate in England, and working with Lloyds Banking Group to seek out new energy-efficient innovations with the Wates Innovation Network.
The business is committed to leaving a positive legacy in the communities in which it works, particularly through its longstanding commitment to procurement via social enterprises, which in 2021, amounted to £6.8m.
Wates’ five-year social value strategy, Creating Opportunities, was launched in November 2020 and has three central themes: challenging inequality, inspiring and educating young people about careers in the build environment industry; and supporting and scaling the Social Enterprise sector.
In 2021, the first full year of the strategy, Wates generated social value of £115.9m through its own programmes and its work with partner social enterprises, including engaging twelve thousand young people. During the year Wates launched ASSETS, a pioneering six-month social enterprise business mentoring programme to support organisations to scale.
Wates is one of 225 organisations nationally to be recognised by the Awards, along with 30 other companies in the Sustainable Development category. Now in their 56th year, the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are the most prestigious business awards in the country, with Wates and other winners able to use the esteemed Queen’s Awards Emblem for the next five years.