The Industry Forum is one of the most popular sessions at the BMF’s biennial conference, bringing together speakers and delegates from across the building materials and wider construction industry to debate key issues of the day. The scene is set by presentations from four industry leaders, with many years of experience between them, before the debate is opened to the floor.

Of the first two speakers to be named, Andy Mitchell will provide a broader construction industry perspective, drawing on his experience as co-Chair of the CLC as well as his leading role in number of major infrastructure projects. Pete Hallitt will give a suppliers’ view, as a member of the executive team that has helped to ensure that Marshalls not only leads the hard landscaping sector, with a revenue of around £500m, but is also a world class business. 

Mr Mitchell is currently responsible for delivering the Thames Tideway Tunnel, London’s 25km super sewer which will intercept, store and ultimately transfer sewage waste away from the River Thames. The £4.2bn project is due to be completed in 2025. He was previously programme director and board member at Crossrail, and the major programme director of the Thameslink programme. 

Earlier in his career he worked on major developments overseas including Hong Kong Airport and Hong Kong West Rail. He was appointed co-chair of the CLC in 2018. In response to the Covid-19 crisis he has been instrumental in refreshing the structure of the CLC, creating and building upon the CLC task force to broaden industry representation and reach within the body. The new structure places the CLC task force at the heart of the continuing drive to lead and transform the industry as set out in the CLC industry recovery plan.

Mr Mitchell is a fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers and a fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. He was awarded the CBE for his services to civil engineering.

Pete Hallitt originally trained as an engineer, but for the last 35 years he has worked in the commercial arena with market leading brands including British Steel and Stanley Black & Decker, and now Marshalls. The combination of experience in building materials, construction products and DIY/FMCG goods allows him to fully understand the dynamic complexities of trade, supply chains and UK production. Under his guidance, Marshalls maintains its position with distributors, specifiers and users alike, increasing the company’s influence on the job site whilst managing the customer project pipeline.

Mr Hallitt was proud to be admitted into the Worshipful Company of Builders Merchants in 2017 and is an active supporter of the industry. He is also a keen member of the BMF. “In the wake of Brexit and the Covid pandemic, our Conference theme of “Building Beyond Boundaries” will explore how our industry can thrive no matter what the challenges presented by external environments beyond our control,” said John Newcomb, BMF chief executive officer. “I’m delighted that Pete and Andy, who both have a wealth of experience in managing through change, have accepted our invitation to help set the agenda for this unmissable debate.” The sold-out, dual-centre BMF All Industry Conference takes place in Harrogate and York from June 17-20, 2021. Further details are available on the Conference website,

Second stage registration will be launched on January 11, 2021 when attendees will be asked to confirm delegate names, hotel choices and optional social activities.

The headline sponsor for the second year is the Crystal Group. Other key sponsors include ACO, BMN, Kerridge Commercial Systems, Knauf Insulation, Marshalls, Marsh Industries, Rockwool, SIG and Xtratherm.