The "enormous contribution" made by the construction industry to this month's London Olympic Games has been highlighted by Sue Sharp, the incoming president of the Building & Engineering Services Association (B&ES).

Speaking at the annual general meeting of the Association, Sharp invited her fellow members to reflect on the words of Howard Shiplee, Olympics construction director, to the effect that “we are now a beacon of hope, demonstrating on a world stage what our industry can do”.

“I am sure that is a sentiment from which we can all draw strength in facing a future which continues to look less than rosy,” the president said.

Despite the continuing difficult economic circumstances, and the threats to the industry's commercial recovery, Sharp said: "If our businesses are to survive and grow in the long term, we must move forward in the belief that the recession will end some day, that the nation will return to some semblance of prosperity."

She added that it was “the over-riding duty” of B&ES to assist its members not only to stay afloat in the short term, but “to put in place the building blocks with which they can construct a profitable and enduring future”.