43 - Specialised construction activities

This Chapter has been extracted from the ONS Explanatory Notes and provides a more detailed explanation of possible activities that could fall within the SIC Codes related to the Chapter.

This division includes specialised construction activities (special trades), i.e. the construction, or preparation for construction, of parts of buildings and civil engineering works. These activities are usually specialised in one aspect common to different structures, requiring specialised skills or equipment, such as pile-driving, foundation work, carcass work, concrete work, brick laying, stone setting, scaffolding, roof covering, etc.  The erection of steel structures is included provided that the parts are not produced by the same unit. Specialised construction activities are mostly carried out under subcontract, but especially in repair construction it is done directly for the owner of the property.

Also included are building finishing and building completion activities.

Included is the installation of all kind of utilities that make the construction function as such. These
activities are usually performed at the site of the construction, although parts of the job may be carried out in a special shop. Included are activities such as plumbing, installation of heating and air-conditioning systems, antennas, alarm systems and other electrical work, sprinkler systems, elevators and escalators, etc. Also included are insulation work (water, heat, sound), sheet metal work, commercial refrigerating work, the installation of illumination and signalling systems for roads, railways, airports, harbours, etc. Repair of the above mentioned installations is also included

Building completion activities encompass activities that contribute to the completion or finishing of a
construction such as glazing, plastering, painting, floor and wall tiling or covering with other materials like parquet, carpets, wallpaper, etc., floor sanding, finish carpentry, acoustical work, cleaning of the exterior, etc. Repairs to the above mentioned completion or finishing work are also included. The renting of equipment with operator is classified with the associated construction activity.

43.1 Demolition and site preparation

This group includes activities of preparing a site for subsequent construction activities, including the
removal of previously existing structures.

43.11 Demolition

This class includes:
- demolition or wrecking of buildings and other structures

43.12 Site preparation

This class includes:
- clearing of building sites
- earth moving: excavation, landfill, levelling and grading of construction sites, trench digging, rock
removal, blasting, etc.
- site preparation for mining:
• overburden removal and other development and preparation of mineral properties and sites, except oil
and gas sites

This class also includes:
- building site drainage
- drainage of agricultural or forestry land

This class excludes:
- drilling of production oil or gas wells, see 06.10, 06.20
- decontamination of soil, see 39.00
- water well drilling, see 42.21
- shaft sinking, see 43.99

43.13 Test drilling and boring

This class includes:
- test drilling, test boring and core sampling for construction, geophysical, geological or similar purposes

This class excludes:
- drilling of production oil or gas wells, see 06.10, 06.20
- test drilling and boring support services during mining activities, see 09.90
- water well drilling, see 42.21
- shaft sinking, see 43.99
- oil and gas field exploration, geophysical, geological and seismic surveying, see 71.12

43.2 Electrical, plumbing and other construction installation activities

This group includes installation activities that support the functioning of a building as such, including
installation of electrical systems, plumbing (water, gas and sewage systems), heat and air-conditioning systems, elevators etc.

43.21 Electrical installation

This class includes the installation of electrical systems in all kinds of buildings and civil engineering structures.

This class includes:
- installation of:
• electrical wiring and fittings
• telecommunications wiring
• computer network and cable television wiring, including fibre optic
• satellite dishes
• lighting systems
• fire alarms
• burglar alarm systems
• street lighting and electrical signals
• airport runway lighting

This class also includes:
- connecting of electric appliances and household equipment, including baseboard heating

This class excludes:
- construction of communications and power transmission lines, see 42.22
- monitoring and remote monitoring of electronic security systems, such as burglar alarms and fire
alarms, including their installation and maintenance, see 80.20

43.22 Plumbing, heat and air-conditioning installation

This class includes the installation of plumbing, heating and air-conditioning systems, including additions, alterations, maintenance and repair.

This class includes:
- installation in buildings or other construction projects of:
• heating systems (electric, gas and oil)
• furnaces, cooling towers
• non-electric solar energy collectors
• plumbing and sanitary equipment
• ventilation and air-conditioning equipment and ducts
• gas fittings
• steam piping
• fire sprinkler systems
• lawn sprinkler systems
- duct work installation

This class excludes:
- installation of electric baseboard heating, see 43.21

43.29 Other construction installation

This class includes the installation of equipment other than electrical, plumbing, heating and air conditioning systems or industrial machinery in buildings and civil engineering structures.

This class includes:
- installation in buildings or other construction projects of:
• elevators, escalators, including repair and maintenence
• automated and revolving doors
• lightning conductors
• vacuum cleaning systems
• thermal, sound or vibration insulation

This class excludes:
- installation of industrial machinery, see 33.20

43.3 Building completion and finishing

43.31 Plastering

This class includes:
- application in buildings or other construction projects of interior and exterior plaster or stucco, including
related lathing materials

43.32 Joinery installation

This class includes:
- installation of doors (except automated and revolving), windows, door and window frames, of wood or other materials
- installation of fitted kitchens, built-in cupboards, staircases, shop fittings and the like
- interior completion such as ceilings, movable partitions, etc.

This class excludes:
- installation of automated and revolving doors, see 43.29

43.33 Floor and wall covering

This class includes:
- laying, tiling, hanging or fitting in buildings or other construction projects of:
• ceramic, concrete or cut stone wall or floor tiles, ceramic stove fitting
• parquet and other wooden floor coverings, wooden wall coverings
• carpets and linoleum floor coverings, including of rubber or plastic
• terrazzo, marble, granite or slate floor or wall coverings
• wallpaper

43.34 Painting and glazing

43.34/1 Painting

This subclass includes:
- interior and exterior painting of buildings
- painting of civil engineering structures

43.34/2 Glazing

This subclass includes:
- installation of glass, mirrors, etc.
This subclass excludes:
- installation of glazed window units and installation of unglazed window frames, see 43.32

43.39 Other building completion and finishing

This class includes:
- cleaning of new buildings after construction
- other building completion and finishing work n.e.c.

This class excludes:
- activities of interior decoration designers, see 74.10
- general interior cleaning of buildings and other structures, see 81.21
- specialised interior and exterior cleaning of buildings, see 81.22

43.9 Other specialised construction activities

43.91 Roofing activities

This class includes:
- erection of roofs
- roof covering

This class excludes:
- renting of construction machinery and equipment without operator, see 77.32

43.99 Other specialised construction activities n.e.c.

43.99/1 Scaffold erection

This subclass includes:
- scaffolds and work platform erecting and dismantling, including renting of scaffolds and work platforms

This subclass excludes:
- renting of scaffolds without erection and dismantling, see 77.32

43.99/9 Specialised construction activities (other than scaffold erection) n.e.c.

This subclass includes:
- construction activities specialising in one aspect common to different kind of structures, requiring
specialised skill or equipment:
• construction of foundations, including pile driving
• damp proofing and water proofing works
• de-humidification of buildings
• shaft sinking
• erection of steel elements
• steel bending
• bricklaying and stone setting
• erection of chimneys and industrial ovens
• work with specialist access requirements necessitating climbing skills and the use of related equipment,
e.g. working at height on tall structures
- subsurface work
- construction of outdoor swimming pools
- steam cleaning, sand blasting and similar activities for building exteriors
- renting of cranes and other building equipment, which cannot be allocated to a specific construction
type, with operator

This subclass excludes:
- renting of construction machinery and equipment without operator, see 77.32


For all queries related to this Chapter or any other aspect of SIC Codes, please contact the Office of National Statistics on 01329 444970 or email classifications.helpdesk@ons.gov.uk.