There is no greater responsibility for an organisation than to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of its employees and others who could be affected by its activities. Our overall objective is to be proactive in removing and reducing the risks associated with our work.

To achieve this the Group's Health and Safety Policy and management systems stipulates, firstly, that pre-start planning is undertaken to identify reasonably practicable controls to remove and reduce the risks associated with our work activities. Secondly, that the controls are implemented correctly at all times and, thirdly, that all our operations, including construction, sales, customer care and office based activities, are regularly monitored and reviewed to maintain the required policy standards.

Therefore, we strongly promote, to both our directly employed and supply chain workforce, the collective and individual responsibility we all have to ensure the controls required to mitigate the risks associated with our work activities are planned and implemented at all times.

The Group Health and Safety Department resource devoted to providing support to our operational management has increased by 50% in 2015 and is now more closely aligned with our regional and operating business organisation structure. It is intended that this will enhance the Group's ability to plan, monitor and review the effective implementation of our health and safety management systems. On a day to day level, the new structure will augment the department's ability to provide training, attend pre-start meetings, carry out unannounced inspections of construction, customer care, sales and office work activities as well as undertake incident led investigations.

Third Party audits of the Group's health and safety management systems were last undertaken in 2014 as part of a bi-annual process. Going forward, this exercise will be carried out as part of a rolling programme that will see a minimum of one of our 28 operating businesses audited every month.

In addition to Group Health and Safety performance monitoring activities, regular visual and/or documented checks of our work activities are also undertaken by all levels of our operational management teams.

The overall aim is that by implementing the requirements of the Group Health & Safety Policy and responding to the findings from our monitoring and review processes we can deliver improvements in our health and safety performance levels.

As part of our incident led investigations we notify the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) of relevant work related accidents under the Reporting of Incidents, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR). There were no fatalities to report and the number of major injuries reduced 18% in 2015 compared to the previous year. The number of injuries resulting in over seven days of absence increased by 39% with the bulk of all reportable injuries (43%) relating to slips, trips or falls on the same level.

The actual number of RIDDORs increased by 15% from 41 in 2014 to 47 in 2015 although, due to increases in production and the number of site based personnel, our Annual Incident Injury Rate (AIIR) only increased slightly to 3.6 RIDDORs per 1,000 workers (2014: 3.5).

No. of RIDDOR reportable accidents

No of riddor

No. of RIDDORs per thousand workers

No  of riddor per

The HSE made 39 unscheduled site visits in 2015 (2014: 45). The results of its visits showed a significant improvement in performance with 64% of the feedback received resulting in satisfactory comments (2014: 40%) whilst Notifications of Contraventions and Prohibition/Improvement Notice enforcement actions were down 38% and 71% respectively. During 2015 we were not subject to any HSE prosecution and we continue to strive to maintain good standards and a good working relationship with the HSE.

The Group compares its annual performance against figures produced by the Home Builders Federation (HBF) Health & Safety Forum and the "all construction industry" statistics produced by the HSE. Both the HBF and HSE collate and publish annual accident reports for the 1 April – 31 March reporting period, and our annual statistics are comparable.

Health & safety training

Training is provided both to our directly employed and subcontractor workforce and covers the most significant risks associated with our construction operations and our other work activities including customer care, sales and office based roles.

We coordinate and provide Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) recognised training to our management teams, including Site Safety Plus, Scaffold Inspection, Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment as well as new starter inductions and policy briefings/updates for management.

In addition to the more formal training detailed above, Toolbox Talks (TBTs) for site personnel, including our supply chain workforce, are agreed and delivered locally by our operating businesses and Group Health and Safety Department. The choice of TBTs is based on performance monitoring findings and details of the TBT programme are maintained in Operating Business Health and Safety Action Plans.

The number of health and safety training days co-ordinated and provided by the Group in 2015 was 8,217 (2014: 6,045), an increase of 36%.

All of our site compounds have facilities that allow the screening of DVDs on Health & Safety, specially developed for use by Persimmon. The DVDs produced include a specific message from the Group's Senior Management, which cover pre-start and site closedown activities as well as a wide range of work related topics. Additional DVDs have been produced to assist in the delivery of tool box talks on operational issues such as working at height, traffic management and occupational health.

The Group views effective training as a two way street and whilst there is an absolute requirement for management and others to impart key safety messages via TBTs and other means, we actively encourage engagement from our employees and sub-contractor workforce. This includes, for example, offering ideas and suggestions on all aspects of health and safety as well as reporting near misses and dangerous occurrences.

An ongoing programme of Project Management Leadership and Behavioural Safety that began in March 2015 with 12 one day courses for senior construction staff will continue into 2016.

The Group works closely with the Home Builders Federation (HBF) Health and Safety Forum to improve health and safety standards in the sector.

Health & Safety — Objectives
In 2016 we will:Actions and Measurement
Provide robust operational support through increased Group Health and Safety Department resourceCo-ordinate and provide practical risk based health & safety training across the workforce
Continue to raise health and safety awareness amongst our directly employed and supply chain workforceOngoing participation in industry led (HBF) initiatives
Strive to ensure the highest standards of Health & Safety across our workforce and sitesReduce the year on year Accident Incident Injury Rate per 1,000 workers