CONFERENCE: CANCELLED – Is this the decade when the dial shifts for demolition?

CANCELLED. Demo Expo regrets that conference speaker, Richard Vann, is unfortunately no longer able to attend due to an unavoidable family clash. 

Richard Vann, highly-respected Consultant at RVA Group and Past President of the Institute of Demolition Engineers, is the first conference speaker to be announced for Demo Expo 2021.

You can join Richard in the NFDC Conference Theatre at Demo Expo on 16th September at 12.45pm as he explores – Is this the decade that demolition gains deserved respect in the value chain?

Here’s a taster of what to expect Richard’s 45 minute talk;

Ask anyone outside of the demolition industry to describe what the engineering profession does, and they’d no doubt describe scenes full of dozers and excavators – even cranes and balls – pulling down tired buildings, plant and other assets, in order to make way for something more exciting.  Some, sadly, still perceive it as relatively ‘rough and ready’.

Of course, professionals within the industry already know that demolition is actually a scientific discipline which thrives on the breadth and depth of engineering skills within it. These skills combine to mitigate risks and execute inherently hazardous projects safely, cost-effectively, and with maximum respect for both the environment and surrounding communities.

But many factors are pointing to this being the decade when the dial shifts – when decommissioning, decontamination, dismantling and demolition firms gain increasing and more widespread respect for the role they play in the wider built environment.

This is evidenced, not least, by growing demand for front-end engineering services, not only in earlier phases of decommissioning works, but sometimes before assets are even constructed! The next ten years could be very exciting for demolition, indeed.

Drawing upon nearly four decades of industry experience, Richard Vann will explore the catalysts for this new movement, the benefits for clients, and how contractors and consultants alike could best leverage the opportunities that lie ahead.


With approaching four decades’ experience in the sector, Richard Vann began his demolition career with a contractor, in 1982. In 1992, he identified a market gap within the high-hazard operational sectors of power generation, and chemical, petrochemical and pharmaceutical industries. As a result, he established RVA Group – a specialist project management and engineering organisation providing knowledge-based support to ensure the successful delivery of decommissioning, decontamination, dismantling and demolition projects worldwide.

With over 850 assignments under his belt – and having worked alongside major global brands including BASF, INEOS, Engie, ConocoPhillips and GSK – Richard remains managing director of RVA Group, to this day.

Passionate about the development of skills, the sharing of knowledge, and the reputation of the demolition industry, he is a notable speaker in this field, and has delivered dozens of presentations in the UK, wider Europe and Russia – including keynote speeches.

He is also past president of the Institute of Demolition Engineers and the Institute of Explosives Engineers.