Changemaker Spotlight: Finn Caldwell, delivering Passivhaus at a Tier 1 Contractor 

Finn Caldwell Morrison Large

Finn is a real shining star for BE-ST and the work that we do.  


Finn and BE-ST have worked together since 2020. Starting as one of our scholarship students, to taking our low carbon construction training early on back in 2021, to now working on some innovative Passivhaus projects together as part of a Tier 1 contractor, it’s been amazing to see Finn grow into a leader in this space and for us to be a part of that journey.   


Getting into construction 


Finn studied an undergraduate in Architectural Technology at Robert Gordon University. Finishing during the Covid-19 pandemic, he decided to do a Master's degree at Edinburgh Napier, which BE-ST funded. It was through the scholarship programme that Finn found his first industry job with Carbon Futures for a year before moving onto Morrison Construction, which is where he is today. 


Working as a sustainability consultant  


Finn works as a Low Carbon Graduate, consulting on low carbon measures across Morrison Construction’s low carbon projects. Finn’s work mostly consists of working with clients and design teams to make sure that projects are achieving their carbon targets.  


If the building is aiming for a certain standard like Passivhaus, Finn puts the procedures in place to get it to that level. He adds, “I have also been working with colleagues down South to look at our overall carbon plans as a company. Before I was on-site full time, I was on about 20 different projects that were all sort of low carbon in one way or another.” 


Forging the Passivhaus landscape 


Finn is currently based on-site for Maybury Primary School – a two-storey timber frame Passive house school – gaining site experience and supporting Passivhaus-evidencing. This project has benefited off the back of previous work Morrison Construction has done with BE-ST in Passivhaus, including undertaking practical training, delivering the UK’s first Passivhaus steel rig and the new TARDIS test bay for other Tier 1s, their collaborators and their supply chain – all which Finn has used or been involved in.  


As a Tier 1 contractor, Morrison Construction is establishing itself as a leader in the low carbon construction space and Finn is playing a part in this. Speaking on the benefits of the focus on sustainable construction work, Finn says, “we've reaped the rewards of it. We are now seen as being one of the forefronts of it.” 


The landscape, Finn notes, is changing: “If you're not doing low carbon, you're going to get left behind.” 


The importance of skills training  


A significant part of the upskilling of the Morrison Construction team to enable to delivery of Passivhaus work has been done through BE-ST.  


Finn speaks with us on the Passivhaus training, saying: “I did a lot of online BE-ST webinars during COVID but getting hands-on practical experience at the training has been great for gaining practical skills and industry knowledge. Rupert who leads the training really knows what he's talking about and someone like that leading the training is great because you need people that have done it in real life.” 


“We've invested in our team taking the tradesperson training and the practical training now is going to follow on suit and it's made a big difference for our projects, in our site teams and pre-construction teams. I would fully recommend it to anyone that needs to upskill or get a bit more knowledge on it.” 

Maybury Site Visit

Leading outside work 


As a member of the Built Environment Change Makers, Finn is co-chairing the Sustainability Working Group for the Construction Leadership Forum. He is also working on the Alt-Futures programme, which is looking at the various future scenarios that the built environment could impact. He is also heading up a graduate group throughout all of Morrison Construction which is connecting peers from across the company and the wider supply chain to network and learn together. 


Support from BE-ST 


It’s been fantastic to support Finn at different stages of his career and see him flourish and positively impact the construction sector in the way that he has. 


Finn is grateful for the support BE-ST provides, saying “It’s been invaluable support from BE-ST. The fact that I was on the Scholarship Fund was incredible. I was put in touch with Carbon Futures whilst I was on the fund and BE-ST helped me with meditation which was great. And then whilst doing that started understanding low carbon construction a bit more.” 


Advice for future change makers 


To finish off our conversation, we asked Finn if he had any advice for those looking to join industry or make a difference in sector. His message and advice is: “You can do so much in the industry that's not necessarily just the trades. There's so much more to the industry and as we need to start acting towards like climate targets, there's only going to be more of it.”