Moving on from a challenging year

January 01, 2021

Moving on from a challenging year

When we embarked on 2020, none of us could have predicted just how the year would unfold. It has been, as our Managing Director, John Witherden said back in March, 'unprecedented and very challenging' for everyone.  

John, who this year marked 45 years with Aworth Survey Consultants, has also seen the firm through two recessions, as well as the uncertainty of Brexit.  

"However, when times are tough, the pressure to succeed and maintain our high standards intensifies," he says. "I believe our reputation as a trusted, experienced and reliable service provider over five decades has helped us to survive and thrive."

The lockdown, of course, did give us more time to catch-up on some television and, while watching the first episode of series 3 of Killing Eve, we saw one of our previous projects on screen.! The opening scene was set in a Russian gymnasium during the 1970s. However, our team recognised it as the Seymour Leisure Centre in London, a space we surveyed on behalf of our client Westminster City Council five years ago.  

The pandemic has proved particularly hard for sectors such as retail and we have all become used to waiting outside some shops, until there's room to enter. This year, our experience and expertise in producing accurately measured floor plans has been invaluable for clients who have needed to establish how large their offices or venues are.

Throughout 2020, we continued our relationship with Bluewater, which goes back to before the centre was opened in 1999. This year we were called upon to provide an updated floor plan for Zara's new concept store which opened just before Christmas. It covers 37,000 sq ft and is twice the size of the previous outlet.

An area of the business which has continued to be very busy is MAPS@Aworth, which has been responding particularly to clients who are looking to build home offices, gyms in their gardens or a room for a newly-discovered hobby during lockdown. This is likely to continue, as so much of our life now revolves around our home. MAPS@Aworth is also an Ordnance Survey (OS) Mapping and Data Centre and supplies up-to-date OS mapping data, planning application maps and historical OS mapping, together with a large range of other professional map products.

Whether they have been able to attend site or not, our team has still been able to transform our clients' 2D documents into a data-rich BIM model. With a vast knowledge and experience in 2D to BIM workflow, we can accurately produce a BIM model from the existing 2D plans, elevations, sections and photography that is available from a current or archive project.

Housing and residential property is likely to be even busier for us as we look ahead to 2021. In June, Prime Minister Boris Johnson delivered a speech now referred to as 'build build build', in which he unveiled the most 'radical reforms to our planning system since the Second World War, making it easier to build better homes where people want to live'.

Put more simply, it will now be easier to build on brownfield sites - and in some cases, greenfield as well - and the types of services we have been providing to developers recently include topographical surveys, rights of light surveys and underground services surveys.

Whether our customers are large or small, we offer them our experience which spans nearly 60 years. What they all rely on is that our survey data is accurate, reliable information that underpins their decisions, analysis and design.

We look forward to working with you in 2021 and wish you a happy and peaceful New Year.

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