ECN September 2020

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The revolutionary new junction box for lighting







Win a £200 voucher courtesy of Scolmore


KNIGHTSBRIDGE REWRITES THE SCRIPT WITH NEW BLOCKBUSTER CATALOGUE Knightsbridge has published its new 2021 catalogue, which is available to the trade now. The handy publication is packed from cover to cover – over 2,500 products across nearly 400 pages – with new developments, impressive innovations, and lots of ideas.


ivided into easy-toreference sections, the new catalogue from Knightsbridge provides full product details along with high quality lifestyle and product images. It features a new Smart section, comprising a comprehensive range of commercial, domestic, and outdoor smart products that are easy to use and all controllable via one simple app. Some new introductions reflect the ever-changing tastes of consumers – a polished chrome finish added to the popular rounded edge range of switches and sockets, a selection of new under cabinet lighting, and additions to the range of LED lamps.

For outdoors, there’s plenty to choose from: an innovative new range of weatherproof wiring accessories, and new wall lights and bollards. For commercial work, there is a comprehensive new range of self-test emergency lighting products. They put safety first while requiring minimum manual intervention post installation, therefore keeping costs down. To get your copy, simply visit www. or call Knightsbridge on 01582 887760.

Turn to page 12 for the full story.


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/ Rolec-Services

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Lighting Nigel Harvey of Recolight offers 22 suggestions for contractors and

4 E ditorial

end users on ways to become more sustainable.

A fond farewell.

nouk Brown of National Lighting 24 Alooks at the top five trends expected to

7 I ndustry News

make waves in interior lighting design this winter.

New health and safety guidance from the CICV Forum, electric underfloor heating growth, details of popular lighting projects, and more.

ike Collins of Ovia reflects on the 26 Mcompany’s early success following its

12 C over Story Catherine Connolly, CEO of Knightsbridge, introduces the company’s 2021 catalogue and details a positive end of year forecast.

14 C ontract News A London Square contract for J S Wright, a lighting upgrade for Liverpool Aquatics Centre, and more.

16 T raining Details of Select’s new YouTube series, ladder training sessions for those working at heights, and more.

18 K ey Issue Tamworth-based Able Electrical has not only survived the coronavirus pandemic, but is actually now stronger than ever.

20 P roject Focus The transformerless Sentyrum range from Riello UPS has helped Belfast International Airport reach new heights.

50 C ompetition

founding in late 2019. oman Jarocki explains some of the 28 Rlatest advances as it relates to stair controllers and the installation of LED lighting on staircases. hahid Khan, ECA Technical Manager, 30 Slooks at how automated lighting and smart buildings can help to drive energy efficiency. has installed new LED fixtures 32 Aatnolis a station underpass in West Yorkshire in an effort to transform the area. Booth, Managing Director at Gira 35 MUK,arklooks at this year’s lighting trends. ith assistance from Energys Group, 38 WOsmani Primary School has upgraded to LED lighting and is making considerable savings. dison Lighting Direct discusses how 40 Edesign and innovation of modern LED

A chance to win a £200 multistore voucher, courtesy of Scolmore.

lighting fixtures is improving efficiency.

60 C ompany Showcase

entola Projects is aiding the leisure 42 Vindustry’s recovery efforts with a range

Sponsored content from across the sector.

of safety-conscious solutions.


Wholesalers & Distributors

raham Wright of the Heat Pump 44 GAssociation discusses the contribution of

EF has added a new interactive 52 Ccatalogue and trade app to its growing

heat pump technology in the UK’s carbon reduction commitments.

selection of digital tools for customers. ECN provides a full round-up.

oy Marsden explains how new 45 Rways of working should see a rise

arie Parry looks at the steps 55 MScolmore Group has taken throughout

in smart technology to ensure buildings intelligently manage hot water provision.

coronavirus and explains how it is operating under a ‘new normal’. urvey findings from Toolstation 56 Shave revealed that COVID-19 has


P aul Williams of Domus Ventilation analyses the changes to Part F of the Building Regulations, which covers ventilation, and looks at the implications.

cut workloads for 50% of trade professionals. n in-depth look at how Red Arrow 58 AElectrical Distribution is preparing for

llen Huelin of Whitecode Design 48 EAssociates unpicks the ‘Future support

a more energy-efficient future.

for low carbon heat’ proposal.

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September 2020 | 3

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EV Charging



elcome to the September issue of ECN. I’m sad to report that this month’s issue is my last as editor of the title, so I’d like to start by thanking everyone for all your support during my time here. It’s certainly been an eventful (and important) time for the industry too. When I took the reins back in 2018, the fallout from the 18th Edition was still very high on the agenda, and helping readers get to grips with the changes certainly kept us busy – and just when it seemed like people were up to speed, the amendments started coming through, so there was never a dull moment! We also had the Grenfell fallout and subsequent impact on safety standards in buildings to contend with, and with the recently implemented Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector coming into force in July, it seems as though the industry is taking steps in the right direction to help avoid a repeat of such a catastrophe. I’ve also been impressed with how the industry is striving for greater energy efficiency, and that it’s genuinely well-intentioned – rather than a half-hearted box ticking exercise (as has often been the case in other industries I’ve worked in). The level of innovation in the smart home arena also continues to impress, and the evolution

Published monthly by All Things Media Ltd., Suite 14, 6-8 Revenge Road, Lordswood, Kent ME5 8UD. Tel: 01634 673163 Fax: 01634 673173

of electric vehicles seems encouraging too – although there does still seem like a long way to go before petrol and diesel vehicles are banished for good. All of the above now seems to have been dwarfed by COVID-19 issues, however, which have dominated the pages of ECN for the majority of the year. The industry definitely chipped in when it mattered most, and bringing you stories of how contractors helped construct the various NHS Nightingale hospitals around the country served as an important reminder of just how imperative their services become during times of need. The future of ECN is in very safe hands, and I’m pleased to announce that Carly Wills has come on-board to take the industry’s leading electrical contracting magazine into its next chapter. Carly has worked on a plethora of trade magazines during her career and has a wealth of experience, with particular expertise in electrical engineering and energy management matters. Once lockdown restrictions have eased and press events and exhibitions are back on the agenda, Carly will be out and about and is looking forward to meeting with you all. In the meantime, feel free to drop her a line to say hello by emailing We’ve been celebrating ECN’s 40th anniversary this year, and it’s been a genuine pleasure to have become a small part of the magazine’s history. Thanks once again for your continued support, and enjoy the issue!

Circuit Protection & Switchgear

Simon Rowley, Editor

EDITOR: SIMON ROWLEY T: 01634 673163 E:

STUDIO: MARK WELLER T: 01634 673163 E:

EDITOR: CARLY WILLS T: 01634 673163 E:




Smart Lighting & Lighting Control

October Issue Advertising deadline: September 24 Editorial deadline: September 14

ACCOUNTS T: 01634 673163 E:

ECN charity of choice

The editors and publishers do not necessarily agree with the views expressed by contributors nor do they accept responsibility for any errors in the transmission of the subject matter in this publication. In all matters the editor’s decision is final. Editorial contributions to ECN are welcomed, and the editor reserves the right to alter or abridge text prior to the publication. Overseas Subscription Rates: Europe £60.00; Rest of World £70.00. Copyright © 2020, All rights reserved. Printed by Micropress, Reydon Business Park Fountain Way, Reydon, Southwold, IP18 6SZ.

Editorial.indd 4



28/08/2020 11:30


EDIAN Soft Curved Edge

Wiring Accessories Range


Our first range to feature single screw fixings on all its modular light switches.

t 0121 711 1990 | f 0121 711 1344 |

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Connect with us on:

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18th Edition Solutions CIRCUIT PROTECTION TEL: 01563 533 554 SALES@CPELECTRIC.CO.UK

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INDUSTRY NEWS SELECT LAUNCHES SELECTCERTS USER GUIDE Select has continued its ongoing member support by launching an in-depth guide for users of its popular SELECTcerts digital certification app. The 60-page digital booklet includes practical information on all aspects of the service, from getting started to creating certificates and making the most of the app’s many functions. Created by Select Technical Advisor, Neil Sim, with input from other members of the trade association’s technical team, the guide features clear imagery to help users gain maximum benefits from the service. Select Director of Technical Services Dave Forrester, says, “We are delighted with the new user guide, which has been created in response to specific member feedback. The

new guide will help members create a full range of electronic certificates quickly and easily, and assist in the creation of a client database and installation locations. “It’s yet another way in which we continue to listen to our members and deliver the services and support they need.” The new guide follows a range of dedicated services introduced for SELECTcerts users since a new version of the app was launched in February. A Facebook group now gives Members the chance to ask questions and share advice, with 28 new users signing up in June and July. A regular e-newsletter is also being sent to all users, providing hints, tips and updates. Select,


AICO BECOMES AN EIC CHAMPION Over the last few years, Aico has partnered with the Electrical Industries Charity (EIC) with the aim of strengthening and supporting the electrical industry. Aico is proud to announce that it is now recognised as an EIC Champion. With this recognition, Aico is helping to support the only charity which is specifically for people working within the electrical industry and their families. Aico will also have exclusive access to health presentations created by EIC, which explore the different topics which affect the electrical industry, such as mental health, brain injury, financial wellbeing, and self-identity issues. An Aico colleague will be nominated as the internal EIC Champion representative, and they will have the opportunity to discuss these health topics with a qualified member of the charity welfare team before delivering presentations to their Aico colleagues. Aico and the EIC have recently joined forces to help educate and increase understanding of mental health awareness with virtual, online training. These sessions will be run by a qualified EIC trainer and aim to provide an understanding of what mental health is, knowledge on some common mental health issues and encourage challenging of the stigmas associated with mental health. This initiative will help educate in ways to look after your own mental health and to support someone who may be in distress. The EIC is an industry charity that, for over 100 years, has recognised the importance of providing the right support and meeting the wellbeing needs of individuals to create better workplaces and industry communities.

According to a new Graphical Research growth forecast report, the Europe Electric Underfloor Heating Market is predicted to mark ascending growth by 2026. The European electric underfloor heating market is predicted to grow on account of adverse impact of climate change pertaining to which European and other Nordic countries are experiencing extreme cold winters. These units have become a necessity across the household and commercial establishments. It is a central heating system which facilitates flexible and convenient installation on walls or ceilings without demanding extra space and works on either electricity or a hydraulic system to facilitate optimal indoor temperature via techniques like convection, conduction or radiation. Key product functions, including advanced heating and temperature control coupled with enhanced aesthetic product design and health benefits, will facilitate mass product adoption. For instance, Norway has the highest number of patients suffering from osteoporosis, which is a condition leading to bone mass loss and will result in increased rate of incurring serious bone fractures. The heating system helps in relieving such patients and helps in combatting respiratory allergies by carrying fine dust particles upwards owing to circular motion of convention currents Increasing deployments across new building establishments owing to low maintenance, the ability to work well with any kind of flooring and its potential to increase the property value manifolds will drive the business growth. Tax credit initiatives adopted by respective governments has addressed the financial hurdle towards making the product affordable. Furthermore, strict environmental norms have shifted the customer focus towards energy efficient and reliable heating systems. The commercial electric underfloor heating market is set to grow, owing to key benefits including product flexibility and energy efficiency. Graphical Research,

Industry News.indd 7

Scolmore has made some of its SGTV content available through a brand new series of weekly podcasts, enabling electricians to tune in at a time that suits them. It’s now over a year since Scolmore Group launched its dedicated YouTube channel, SGTV, and the mix of interviews, news and tutorials that are hosted has generated regular engagement and great reviews from electricians. Scolmore understands the time pressures that electricians face, now more than ever as they get back to working after the rigours of lockdown. The release of material via the SGTV weekly podcast is giving electricians more choice about the way they consume the content they are interested in. The podcasts can be accessed across all streaming devices by searching SGTV. Regular engagement with contractors is how Scolmore gains valuable insight into how electricians like to work and what products and solutions they need to help them do their work in the most time- and cost-efficient way. With the coronavirus pandemic leading to the cancellation or postponement of live events and the restriction of the working patterns of many in the industry, more and more electricians have been relying on SGTV as a valuable platform. It has offered them a wealth of information via interviews, tutorials, challenges, unboxings and product overviews, as well as highlighting key industry news, events and dates for the calendar. In the launch episode, Scolmore talked to Alex from Coleg Cambria and Neil McManus from Leicester College about their experiences working in the electrical educational system and how apprenticeships can help in the career journey. Scolmore,





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INDUSTRY NEWS LIGHTING CAN SUPPORT ECONOMIC RECOVERY, WHITE PAPER SAYS The LIA has published a white paper calling for government action to drive economic recovery while, at the same time, supporting the commitment to a net zero economy. At the core of the paper is the need to adopt smart technologies in lighting to green the existing building stock in an ambitious renovation program. LIA President, Terry Dean, says, “Lighting has delivered enormous energy savings over the last 15 years, but there is much more that can be done by adopting smart lighting controls, while advances in emergency lighting can improve the safety of building occupants. This white paper is designed to inform government thinking as they develop policies to stimulate economic recovery and tackle climate change.” To obtain a copy of the white paper, visit viewproduct.aspx?id=16889007. The LIA, the

NAPIT CALLS FOR GRANT SCHEME CLARIFICATION NAPIT has welcomed the recent announcement from Government on the Green Homes Grant Scheme (GHGS) which is set to give over 600,000 homeowners in England up to £10,000 to install energy saving measures to help households save money on energy bills. However, the organisation is calling for clarity to be given on what certification scheme requirements installers will need to comply with to be able to be access the grants for their customers. The requirement for tradespeople to sign up for TrustMark or the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) for renewable heating measures is clear, but the discussions about the scheme requirements are ongoing. David Cowburn (pictured below), COO at NAPIT, comments, “It’s great to see that Government are stimulating installation work during these challenging times – however, the devil is in the detail. The current relationship between TrustMark and the PAS 2030:2017 and PAS 2030:2019 standards needs to be addressed to ensure there are not unnecessary barriers for competent tradespeople looking to enter the market. “This is a fast-moving initiative, expected to launch in September and the £2bn must be spent before the end of March 2021. To meet this ambition, we need to know as early as possible the requirements that installers will need to fulfil.” The Green Homes Grants is set to give owner occupiers and social/private landlords vouchers to install one or more of the following primary measures: solid wall, under-floor, cavity wall or roof insulation; air source or ground source heat pumps; or solar thermal. In addition, households can use the remainder of their voucher, up to the value of the spend on the primary measure/s, for further secondary energy saving measures. To access the voucher, it is expected that homeowners will need to access the Simple Energy Advice (SEA) service and follow a process which will suggest appropriate home improvements and offer a list of approved TrustMark and MCS registered tradespeople. NAPIT,

MOST POPULAR LOCKDOWN LIGHTING PROJECTS REVEALED BLT Direct, a leading stockist of high-quality lighting products and accessories, has revealed its best-selling lockdown products as the nation turned to home and garden improvements to keep them occupied during coronavirus restrictions. With the UK government urging the population to stay home and with millions furloughed, many homeowners have been using the lockdown period to take on home renovations and lighting projects to illuminate gardens and outdoor spaces. Many have also been decluttering and upgrading storage spaces too, with LED light battens in both warm white and natural daylight shades being a popular choice due to their energy efficiency and budget-friendly price tag. Available in both five and six-foot models, the LED battens by V-TAC are also impervious to moisture, making them ideal for garages and sheds. Halogen lighting has also been flying off the shelves, with MR16 halogen lightbulbs offering an excellent solution to illuminating kitchens and bathrooms that have undergone a lockdown makeover. As this type of lighting is due to become obsolete in the near future, many money-savvy shoppers have been stocking up on supplies of halogen lightbulbs to ensure they have a good stockpile of these high-intensity light sources. The warm weather that swept across the UK during lockdown has also seen a surge in sales of fly killer units and replacement tubes. By stocking a wide range of electric and glue board units and replacement tubes, BLT Direct has been able to keep up with the demand for an insect-free home with free shipping on all orders over £60. Finally, many homeowners have been turning their attention to outdoor staples and creating incredible illuminated features in their gardens thanks to waterproof LED strip lighting. Available in a wide range of lengths and colours, LED strip lights are ideal for brightening garden paths and flower borders as well as illuminating decked areas as a garden focal point that can be enjoyed in all weathers. BLT Direct,

CONTRACTORS ENCOURAGED TO IMPROVE THEIR SKILLSETS With the UK showing a commitment to tackling the climate crisis by setting a target to meet net zero emissions by 2050, the Joint Industry Board (JIB) is urging electrical contracting companies to evolve and broaden their skillsets. The JIB believes that the increasing adoption of greener technologies presents contractors with a number of opportunities to upskill and open up their services to new markets. Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a £3bn boost to the UK green economy to be spent on decarbonising buildings and introducing modern systems to save homeowners on their energy bills and kickstart the sector. The JIB is therefore encouraging members to take advantage of the JIB’s Skills Development Fund, which provides financial assistance for courses for those undertaking further education and training in the electrical industry. The following green technology courses are accepted by the JIB Skills Development Fund as eligible courses: Solar Photovoltaic Installation and Maintenance; Electric Vehicle Charging Point Installation (City & Guilds 2919-01); and ONC/ HNC/Degree courses in sustainable engineering. Darren Crannis, Managing Director of CTS Electrical, was funded through the JIB Skills Development Fund to undertake the C&G 2919-01 (as well as obtaining European Social Funding), and he believes all electrical contractors can benefit by improving their knowledge on electrical vehicle charging equipment (EVCE). He says, “The EV market is constantly evolving and it is going to play a crucial role if the UK is to succeed in hitting its netzero target by 2050. It really makes sense for installers to become familiar with EV technology as early as possible and it has certainly opened up a profitable new avenue for our business.” For further information, visit

8 | September 2020

Industry News.indd 8



26/08/2020 14:47

YESSS! We’ve got all the tools for the job


A brand new WEBSITE, the INDUSTRIAL CATALOGUE, the YESSS BOOK and an industry leading CUSTOMER APP









Tel 01924 227941 Email

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Find your branch

25/08/2020 12:05

INDUSTRY NEWS CICV FORUM ISSUES NEW HEALTH AND SAFETY GUIDANCE As Scotland’s building sector continues its recovery, the Construction Industry Coronavirus (CICV) Forum has issued a raft of new health and safety guidance to help steer workers through the phased return. The Forum has launched seven new pieces of open source collateral, offering in-depth industry advice on topics including face coverings, hand washing, domestic working and what to do if there is a case of COVID-19. In addition, it has updated its comprehensive 42-page document, COVID-19 Construction Operating Guidance, which underpins the Safe Operating Guidance produced by Construction Scotland, Scottish Government and the wider industry. Rebecca Crosland, Health and Safety Adviser at the Building Engineering Services Association (BESA), a leading member of the Forum, says, “This new collateral is another important step in protecting both our workforce and the

Scottish public as we all work together to minimise the spread of infection. “The Forum’s Health and Safety sub-group has worked collaboratively to produce clear and practical guidance that is easy to follow and which can be used immediately by businesses of all sizes to help in their ongoing return.” The seven new guidance documents are available to download from the Forum website and cover: •  Advice for businesses carrying out nonessential domestic work •  Health and safety checklist before work is carried out •  Effective use of face coverings •  Good hygiene and hand washing •  A questionnaire for clients before site visits •  What to do if someone displays symptoms of COVID-19 •  Template letter for confirmed cases of COVID-19

In addition, the COVID-19 Construction Operating Guidance has been updated to reflect the latest developments on face coverings, physical distancing, travel and

CICV Forum,


MEGAMAN LAUNCHES NEW LIGHTING CATALOGUE Megaman has launched a new lighting catalogue to showcase its range of low energy fixtures, integrated luminaires, LED lamps and smart lighting technology. With products suitable for retail, office, residential, hospitality and even farm environments, Megaman’s diverse portfolio of products can accommodate a wide range of applications. The catalogue includes details of Megaman’s integrated LED battens, bulkheads, ultra slim panels, louvres, fire-rated downlights, floodlights and dual beam track lights. Its Ingenium ZB smart lighting and home automation solution is featured, as well as its extensive range of LEDs. Megaman also introduces the new Tempus range of emergency lighting solutions within the catalogue. This new series includes ultra-discreet recessed LED downlights and spotlights, high quality IP65 LED operated emergency exit signs, as well as LED light box and bulkhead solutions with optional pictogram exit signs. Also available are lightweight, self-contained emergency packs suitable for use with LED light panels, Megaman’s GU10 LEDs and TEGO fire-rated downlights. To request a copy of the catalogue, email Megaman,

prevention of cross-contamination, with all new content clearly signposted.

The lighting industry lost a true character and stalwart at the start of August, with the sad passing of Peter Denny. Peter worked in the lighting industry for 43 years. Starting his lighting career with Crompton Lighting in 1977 as a sales representative, he quickly moved into specification before joining Thorn, where he rose through the ranks to manage key areas for the business. After a brief spell as Sales Director at Marlin, he spent eight years as Sales and Marketing Director at Cooper Lighting before rejoining Thorn (ZG) again where he served in total nearly 27 years. He joined NVC in 2018 where he was the UK Sales Director. During his time in the industry, Peter served as President of the Lighting Industry Federation (LIF) (2007-2009) and was an active member of the LIF and subsequently LIA Councils where he gave his time freely for the benefit of the industry as a whole. Peter also held the Chairmanship of the industry WEEE Compliance Provider, Lumicom, where again he gave his time voluntarily to further the aims of recycling in the lighting industry. Peter was one of the architects of the integration of LIF and the Lighting Association to create the LIA, recognising the importance in one strong voice for the industry. He worked with many of the leaders of our industry over his career and as a reflection of the high esteem in which he was held, the LIA has received a steady flow of expressions of sadness and condolences to his family. LIA President, Terry Dean says, “Peter was always positive and encouraging to work and industry colleagues alike – a real glass half full man. In the 25 years that I knew him, I always admired the way in which he could tackle situations with empathy and a smile – extremely knowledgeable about our industry, he will be missed by all of us who have, and continued to work with him in different capacities.”

MOVERS & SHAKERS… WernerCo’s Director of Product Engineering, Steve Lock, has been promoted to take on new responsibilities for EMEA projects and aligning the European offering. He has over 15 years’ experience leading multi-disciplined engineering teams.

10 | September 2020

Industry News.indd 10

Cable cleat manufacturer, Ellis Patents, has handed Kelly Brown a global sales remit. Kelly, who joined the company in 2014, was appointed export sales manager in 2018, and has now been promoted to the newly created role of Head of Sales.

Technological Innovations Group (TIG), an audiovisual sales agency in EMEA offering integrated automation and control solutions for smart spaces, has appointed Matthew Bailey as Regional Sales Manager UC for the UK.



26/08/2020 14:47


10A 3 Pole Fan Isolation Switch and a Fused Connection Unit Module all in one Switch Plate.

Code for complete product: CMA3020

Available in other ranges and ďŹ nishes using your choice of plates and modules

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05/08/2020 15:11


KNIGHTSBRIDGE IS GOING PLACES With the publication of its new 2021 catalogue, Catherine Connolly, CEO of Knightsbridge, says the business is looking forward to a positive end of year.


s we enter the traditionally busy period of September to December, the industry finds itself in a situation possibly unrecognisable from any in its history. COVID-19, lockdown and recession are three words you probably don’t want to hear but, like it or not, they have framed life going forward, imposing restrictions on site, causing shortages of product and generally hampering the way we go about our working lives. Against this backdrop, Knightsbridge is determined to continue to serve its contractor customers to the best of its ability in the new ‘normal’. We understand that customers want security and continuity of supply, that deliveries remain predicable and arrive complete and that, where shortfalls occur, they are dealt with as quickly as possible.

Investment in new product ranges To that end, the company has invested in a number of new product ranges and has expanded those that are popular and introduced some state-of-the-art technology that will transform how our products are used. In short, Knightsbridge hasn’t stood still, and the fruits of that labour can be seen in the very latest 2021 catalogue – packed from cover to cover with wiring accessories and lighting products that you will really appreciate. Nobody can have failed to notice that lockdown gave most of us an appreciation of the great outdoors, whether it was the garden, patio or backyard. In response, an innovative range of weatherproof wiring accessories, which comprises robust, easy-to-operate switched sockets and fused spur units, a selection of stylish 20AX outdoor switches, and new outdoor enclosures, has been launched. These have been complemented with a new offering of wall lights and bollards that are a great way of transforming those outdoor spaces, however big or small, into areas that can be enjoyed in the evenings, all year round.

A comprehensive product range The latest technology has also been embraced to provide products some added value that contractors are sure to like. Within the new catalogue, you will find a comprehensive range of commercial, domestic and outdoor smart products that are easy to use and all controllable via one simple app, ‘SmartKnight’, which is available from Google Play and App Store – no gateway hub is required for these devices to work. The app allows users to control all their lighting and wiring, and it works with Google Home and Alexa! As mentioned earlier, certain lines have been upgraded and extended, such as the new range of self-test emergency lighting products that offers convenience, compliance, cost savings and ease of fault identification. The comprehensive, LED-powered range, which is ideal for retail, commercial, industrial and HMO applications, features a robust bulkhead unit, a contemporary downlight, versatile twin spotlights and a stylish exit sign. Also upgraded is the LED batten range, available in handy 5ft and 6ft lengths, which now feature energy-saving microwave sensors.

An innovative range of weatherproof wiring accessories have been launched

Shining a light on emerging trends

“Within the new catalogue, you will find a comprehensive range of commercial, domestic and outdoor smart products that are easy to use and all controllable via one simple app.”

In spite of what’s happened over the course of the last six months, we are still mindful that new trends emerge, fashions change, and homeowners want to upgrade or renovate rooms, whole houses, and of course, their gardens. The new introductions reflect that – a polished chrome finish added to the rounded edge range of switches and sockets, a selection of new under cabinet lighting, and additions to the company’s range of LED lamps. For Knightsbridge, it is very much business as usual: commitment to service remains as strong as ever; the dedication to contractors is unwavering; and the resolve to be the best in the wiring accessories and lighting space is undiminished. To get the full flavour of where we are heading, be sure to check out the new Knightsbridge 2021 catalogue, which is full of great lighting and power ideas. Alternatively, visit or call 01582 887760.  Knightsbridge,

Knightsbridge offers a full range of self-test emergency LED lighting The new catalogue features a new offering of wall lights that can help transform outdoor spaces

12 | September 2020

FCP – ML Accessories.indd 12

There are new versions of the company’s renowned range of switches and sockets



26/08/2020 16:16

2021 CATALOGUE OUT NOW @Knightsbridgemla









@Knightsbridgemla 01582 88 77 60@KnightsbridgeML


ECN advert.indd 1 Untitled-4 1

01582 88 77 60

24/08/2020 13:50:56 25/08/2020 12:08

CONTRACT NEWS RED ARROW LIGHTS UP THE RETAIL INDUSTRY When Red Arrow was tasked with creating a comfortable shopping experience for both Trespass and The Company Group, lighting designer Paul Yarnell and the team worked to deliver effective and energy-efficient commercial installations. The project brief was to design and supply the Canterbury and Chesterfield Trespass stores with commercial lighting, and Red Arrow was required to create an on-brand look that was comfortable for consumers, while also providing accent lighting designed to highlight the merchandise. At Chesterfield, the brief was to provide an energy-saving fitting that was both high performance with a high lumen output, while also remaining aesthetically pleasing for a commercial setting. This was achieved with Red Arrow’s LED Linear Hi-Lo Bays, which offer a daylight and motion sensor accessory that adapts to the changing available ambient light. Equipped with an opaque diffuser to reduce glare, these luminaires were ideal for this project.

THORN MAKES A SPLASH AT AQUATICS CENTRE Switching to Thorn Lighting’s Areaflood Pro floodlights has provided the Liverpool Aquatics Centre at Wavertree Sports Park in Liverpool with increased light levels and a reduction in energy consumption. Important criteria for choosing Areaflood Pro for the illumination of the swimming pool area was that the luminaires had to be fully tested and approved as suitable for use in indoor swimming pool environments. This is in addition to offering a maintenance-free product with a body that is also tested and proven to be resistant to chlorine corrosion. Prior to the new lighting installation, the 50m pool at the Liverpool Aquatics Centre had to be drained following an electrical fault in a floodlight which exploded and showered the pool with shards of glass and also entered the underside of the moveable floor, resulting in major and costly repairs. The choice of the correct fitting suited to the pool environment was critical for health and safety purposes. Following the approval of samples provided by Thorn, a combination of both large and small Areaflood Pro floodlights were chosen for the refurbishment, both of which are compact, lightweight, energy saving and have an IP66 rating. The luminaires have an asymmetrical light distribution of 40 and 60 degrees respectively, with a 4mm toughened glass enclosure for safety. This combination of fittings has ensured a high quality even light distribution with minimum shadowing, whilst offering energy savings of almost 40% compared to the previous fittings. The use of long-life LEDs means there is no need for costly lamp replacements, and the upgrade has improved the quality of the light for staff and customers alike. Thorn Lighting,

The Canterbury branch’s brief, on the other hand, was slightly different. Yarnell explains, “The team at Canterbury wanted to update their lighting design and create a high light output with minimal glare for their shoppers. But the structure of the ceiling caused limitations on where we were able to recess the fittings. “Working with Commercial Lighting Systems, we supplied surface-mounted Bastion 600 x 600 panels, which produced a good level of uniformity. And the circular wall washer shop lights could be aimed to create feature lighting on each side of the store. Collectively, these products achieved approximately 600-700 lux.” Red Arrow,

J S WRIGHT SECURES LONDON SQUARE CONTRACT Mechanical and electrical services specialist, J S Wright, has secured an £8 million-plus contract from award-winning developer, London Square, to fit out homes at a new neighbourhood in the heart of Bermondsey. The Birmingham-based contractor will fit out 276 new apartments, including affordable homes, within the second phase of the £220 million London Square mixed-use development in Grange Road, Bermondsey. The company will supply and install an energy centre and associated pipework to deliver low temperature hot water (LTHW) heating to the one to three-bedroom apartments and penthouses. It will also install a boosted cold water plantroom and distribution network to serve all the units. Each apartment within the five to seven-storey scheme will be equipped with underfloor heating or radiators, with hot and cold water delivered via a heat interface unit (HIU). J S Wright will also supply and install sanitaryware and mechanical extract ventilation systems for all the properties. Additionally, it will install dry risers, domestic sprinklers, an internal rainwater system, above ground drainage and building management system (BMS) controls. J S Wright is about to start work on site, with completion scheduled for March 2022. J S Wright,

FIRE ALARM SYSTEM FOR VICTORIA COURT DEVELOPMENT C-TEC’s CAST XFP addressable fire alarm system is protecting a refurbished retail development in West Yorkshire. Situated in the heart of Cleckheaton, Victoria Court has recently undergone a £2.5m transformation and is now home to two floors of offices and an array of retail and commercial outlets. With its innovative control panels, detection and alarm devices, C-TEC’s new CAST XFP system provides the highest levels of fire protection at the multi-purpose site. Featuring all the qualities of C-TEC’s existing panels plus distributed intelligence, autonomous decision making, high speed data transmission and a powerful group activation command for the rapid deployment of alarm signals, CAST is designed for fast and easy installation. In addition, its capacity for displaying detailed data on all system activity was also a key factor in its specification for this particular site. Nathan Douglas-Smith of Centurion Fire and Security, the specialist fire company that completed the installation of the life-safety systems in just under five weeks, comments, “Fire alarm panel feedback is crucial so engineers and end users can ascertain all site activity. CAST XFP provides the responsible person with vital information on system activity in complete contrast to the old fire alarm system it replaced. As a result, engineers and end users can see exactly what is happening on site.”

ELLIS ADDS TO EXPORT SUCCESS STORY Ellis Patents recently secured a specification to supply its UK designed and manufactured cable cleats to a pulp and paper producer in Brazil. Metso Brasil specified the North Yorkshire company’s 2F+ cable cleats to secure electrical cables in a multi-million Brazilian Real (R$) extension of Suzano Papel e Celulose’s factory in Imperatriz – a city with a population of over half a million in the state of Maranhão. Kelly Brown, Ellis’ Export Sales Manager, says, “The success of our export business is built on relatively simple foundations. We thoroughly research any new market and appoint a local distributor prior to even considering commencing sales. “In the case of the Latin American countries, this research showed we needed another local layer to help develop the various individual markets, which led to us recruiting a business development manager – a role carried out by Gabriela CastroFontoura from her base in Montevideo, Uruguay.” Since commencing export sales to Latin America in 2009, Ellis has secured a string of high-profile specifications for its electrical safety products, including most recently an order for its Vulcan+ cable cleats for installation in an $800 million desalination plant being built as part of the $2.5 billion expansion of BHP’s Spence copper mine in Chile’s Atacama desert. Ellis Patents,


14 | September 2020

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26/08/2020 14:48

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21/08/2020 11:16

TRAINING POSITIVE STEPS IN ‘WORK AT HEIGHT’ TRAINING Following the recent Health & Safety Executive (HSE) ‘Workplace Fatal Injuries in Great Britain 2020’ Annual Statistics, which reported a reduction in the number of fatalities, WernerCo is urging people to carry out its Ladder Association accredited training to ensure the safety of professionals working on-site. The report from HSE revealed that whilst there has been a 24% reduction in the number of fatal accidents in 2019/20, the construction sector still accounts for a significant proportion of these. Additionally, fall from height still remains the main cause of fatal accidents, despite a 27% reduction in those reported. WernerCo is urging ladder users to take caution when working at height, and ensure they have the relevant training required to work safely and correctly. Steve Lock, Director of Product Engineering at WernerCo, comments, “Whilst the latest HSE report highlights that positive steps are being taken and fatal accidents are reducing, there’s still a long way to go to ensure the safety of tradesmen. In order to overcome this, it’s crucial that people know what they are doing when

JTL RESPONDS TO CHANCELLOR’S PLAN FOR JOBS COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on those employed in the UK, and with the Prime Minister highlighting the unfortunate fact that young people have been hardest hit, training provider, JTL, is encouraging employers to harness the new government funding initiative and hire new apprentices now. During the delivery of the summer statement, the Chancellor provided further detail on the government’s Plan for Jobs to tackle unemployment post COVID-19. The statement included a number of new initiatives, offering funding incentives and schemes aimed at helping young people. JTL believes that the funding now accessible to employers will have a hugely positive impact on businesses being able to make the most of the resources and skilled labour available to them and, in turn, further support the country’s economic recovery. Data from the Department of Education reveals that employer vacancies for apprentices in April and May 2020 were 2,020 and 1,850, which compares to 10,400 and 12,580 in the same months of 2019, respectively. With this in mind, and taking into account that the industry was already facing a skills shortage, JTL wants to encourage and support employers to utilise the funding now available to them and to take on the next generation of skilled tradespeople. Caroline Turner, Director of Policy & External Relations at JTL, comments, “This is the optimum time for employers to harness the new funding and take on apprentices to further support their individual business, as well as helping the wider COVID-19 economic recovery plan. “As part of JTL’s support offering and to ensure the pipeline of skilled tradespeople continues, we are on-hand to speak to employers who are keen to invest in the training and development of an apprentice, and to help employers make the most of the government financial assistance available to them”.

using and inspecting access equipment, as this knowledge could make all the difference to safety on site. The Ladder Association offers comprehensive training sessions for both ladder users and inspectors, and as a response to COVID-19 has recently launched its new online training platform. The online course covers the theory element of the traditional training sessions through a series of videos,

after which delegates must attend a half-day session once training centres re-open in order to complete the written assessment and practical element. Alternatively, WernerCo’s Ladder Association approved training sessions have now resumed, having been adapted to adhere to social distancing guidelines. WernerCo,

ELECTRICAL TRAINING ROUTES LAUNCHED BY TESP A series of recommended training routes have been developed by The Electrotechnical Skills Partnership (TESP) to provide clear direction on the right paths to becoming a qualified electrician. Skills, qualifications and competence are firmly at the top of the agenda following the Hackitt Review recommendations, ongoing reforms to building regulations and the sharp focus on the skills needed by the construction and built environment sector as it recovers from the coronavirus pandemic. With over 150,000 UK redundancies made to date by businesses affected by COVID-19, TESP hopes these routes will help individuals make informed decisions about how to spend their time and money to re-train, as there are many electrical qualifications on offer – but not all provide the skills needed by employers. Hosted on the Electrical Careers website (at, the routes are also designed to educate school leavers and those looking to upskill within the industry. The advice given to all is that an apprenticeship is the preferred route into the industry, as it provides the essential work-based experience needed to develop knowledge, skills and competence over a period of time. Traditionally seen as only suitable for young people, in England employers can now access funding for apprentices of any age. Between August 2020 and January 2021, businesses can also receive an incentive payment of up to £3,000 per apprentice, in a move intended to drive apprenticeship recruitment. Recognising that not everyone will be able to secure an apprenticeship place, alternative routes are given for those eligible for further education funding and also those looking to fund their own skills development, such as career changers or re-trainers. Importantly, the routes clearly stress that becoming a fully qualified electrician can only be achieved with valid on-site work experience, as opposed to courses that offer no ‘real world’ practical skills. With these routes now providing clear guidance on recommended electrical training and qualifications, TESP suggests this approach could be replicated in other industries to help everyone considering construction and built environment careers.

SELECT TO DELIVER TOOLBOX TALKS VIA YOUTUBE Select has overcome the enforced postponement of its popular Toolbox Talks roadshow by broadcasting digital versions of the technical presentations on YouTube. The campaigning trade association came up with the alternative solution after this year’s annual event became a casualty of the coronavirus pandemic. Instead of delivering the updates at 12 venues across Scotland in June as planned, electricians can now watch special videos hosted on Select’s ever-expanding YouTube channel. The first 30-minute film gives an in-depth update on electric vehicle (EV) charging, including an overview of requirements, a list of charging mode definitions and initial verification. The film – developed by Select Technical Advisor, Mark McLaughlin, and brought to life by Skills Player – also explains the impact and changes to EV charge point installation caused by the first amendment to BS 7671 issued earlier this year. Dave Forrester, Select’s Director of Technical Services, says, “Every professional needs to keep up to date with their skills and knowledge, and Select’s Toolbox Talks are designed to bring the latest developments into focus. “Many of our member firms are turning their skilled expertise to the issue of EV charging and we can foresee only a rapid increase in demand for this type of work. “The regulations now in place are extensive and have already been revised, so we believe it our job to equip our members with the very latest knowledge and understanding to continue to carry out first-class work.” Select is now working on a second film and is also planning an online Q&A session in which its technical experts will answer member questions on EV issues arising from the Toolbox Talks. Select,


JTL Training,

16 | September 2020

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26/08/2020 14:48

New Electrical Safety Standards Private Rented Sector Training Ideal for Electrical Inspectors NAPIT have launched online training which provides a background to the electrical safety checks and the requirements for periodic inspection and testing to BS 7671:2018 for private rented properties. The training has been developed to create an understanding of the requirements of the legislation and findings of Electrical Installation Condition Reports (EICR) including any implementation of remedial action to ensure electrical safety for tenants.

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21/08/2020 11:18


BACK FROM THE BRINK The coronavirus pandemic is causing considerable problems for electrical contracting firms across the UK - but in this feel-good story, we look at how Government cash and a genuine fighting spirit has made Tamworth-based Able Electrical stronger than ever.


y his own admission, stalwart businessman Jeff Longley from Tamworth works better ‘with his back against the wall’ – which is just as well, considering the huge challenges he has faced in recent months. At the twilight of his career, and just as he was preparing to retire, 66-yearold Jeff was hit with his biggest crises in half a century of business – both of which threatened to jeopardise the family legacy and retirement income he had worked so hard for. However, thanks to his fighting spirit, lots of forward-planning, some financial help from the Government and sheer determination, Jeff and his family electrical business have come back in a stronger position than ever.

Recovering from an ‘abrupt end’

Jeff Longley (left) with his two sons, Dominic (centre) and Luke (right)

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It all started when a 12-year partnership with a national electrical franchise business soured and came to an abrupt end. Jeff’s franchise was incredibly successful, and business was doing well, but the sudden parting of ways led to all work being lost overnight. This threw Jeff’s retirement plans into disarray and he stepped back in to help his sons Dominic and Luke, who are preparing to take over the business completely.

“Instead of retiring or going on furlough myself, I stayed in the business and spent my days doing marketing, learning Zoom, teaching myself video editing, networking and creating web pages.”

Then the global pandemic hit. Jeff explains, “I was supposed to retire last October, and I was just getting ready to take more of a back seat, when we suddenly had to part ways with the franchise. We lost all our work overnight. We set up a new company – Able Electrical – and fought hard to come back. Despite the split costing us around £100,000 in rebranding and lost work, we managed to keep all our staff and were just starting to turn things around when coronavirus hit. “We had to effectively close down for a month to six weeks. I furloughed all the staff and then instead of retiring or going on furlough myself, I stayed in the business and spent my days doing marketing, learning Zoom, teaching myself video editing, networking and creating web pages for the business – I set myself the target of creating 100 new web pages per week.” As well as taking advantage of the Government coronavirus furlough scheme, Jeff also successfully applied for a £10,000 Small Business Grant, which helped cover some of the bills. Slowly but surely, as restrictions eased, the work started coming back in.

Reaping the rewards Jeff is now also reaping the rewards of two business opportunities he has been preparing for during the past several years. Recognising that electric vehicles are the future, Jeff has invested a lot of time and energy ensuring his business is in prime position for people wanting electric vehicle charging points installed at homes and commercial premises. He has also spent years preparing for a new law which came into effect this July, which requires landlords to carry out regular electrical safety inspections (EICR testing) on all properties they let. This has seen Jeff teaching himself the art of search engine optimisation and working with various partners such as marketing companies and content writers to establish himself as a leader in the field. These efforts are now hugely paying off and helping to facilitate the business’s comeback after its two major disasters.

Significant new contracts Able Electrical has recently won large contracts with housing associations, letting agents and landlords for EICR testing, resulting in more than 400 jobs scheduled, another 2,000 to book in and around a further 3,000 in the pipeline. Electric vehicle charging work is also picking up again after an expected quiet period due to coronavirus. As a result, not only is everyone back in work off furlough, but the company is now recruiting. “I have been pushing EICR and car chargers for the last few years and these are now the bulk of our work”, Jeff comments. “Not only are we back, but we’re busier and stronger than ever and need more people. “It has been challenging these last few months, but to be honest I’m better with my back to the wall when I have to fight – otherwise I just get bored. The income from this is my retirement income, so I had to fight for it. “We had Government help from the coronavirus schemes and like most other companies, without that, we would have had to close. We’ve now managed to come back stronger than ever.” Jeff is also campaigning for regulation in the franchise industry following his recent experiences. You can read more about this via his blog at  Able Electrical,



26/08/2020 14:49

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SKY’S THE LIMIT FOR NEW UPS RANGE Replacing an end of life system with Riello UPS’s third generation transformerless Sentryum range has helped Belfast International Airport reach new heights.


elfast International Airport (BIA) is Northern Ireland’s biggest airport and the second busiest on the island of Ireland. Located roughly 13 miles north-west of Belfast near the village of Aldergrove, the airport welcomed more than 6.2 million passengers during 2018, ranking it in the top 10 of all UK airports. The airport was first established back in 1917 as a base for the Royal Air Force during the First World War. In the decades that followed, it combined this role as the HQ for RAF Aldergrove with a growing civil aviation side. Since reopening as a civil airport in October 1963, Belfast International Airport has catered for tens of millions of passengers, including royalty and other VIPs. HRH Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother carried out the official reopening in 1963, while October 2010 saw HRH The Queen mark the completion of a significant terminal upgrade. The iconic Air Force One graced the runway on November 30, 1995, transporting Bill and Hilary Clinton on the first ever visit to Northern Ireland by a serving US president. One of President Clinton’s successors, Barack Obama, also used the airport to travel to the G8 summit of world leaders in June 2013.

Equipment upgrade required

One of the major benefits of the Sentryum range is its three different cabinet sizes

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As expected with such a missioncritical site, the airport features several uninterruptible power supplies which provide backup to crucial IT and operational systems, plus other vital electrical infrastructure. Any loss of power could result in huge disruption to airport services, causing damaging delays for passengers and financial losses to the airport.

Chris McGarry, IT Manager for Belfast International Airport, explains, “One of our main IT UPS systems was coming to the end of its lifecycle and needed to be replaced. The UPS in question supports critical IT infrastructure at the airport. “Whilst we have many redundant systems in place, it is very important all our UPS systems are fully-functional to avoid any power loss and possible disruption to the airport’s IT systems.”

Perfect project partners There was only one company to land the job of replacing the ageing 10kVA UPS in its main IT communications room – Belfast International Airport turned to longstanding partner, Ashdale Engineering. Established in 1977, the Belfast-based electrical engineering company is a certified Riello UPS reseller and service partner. It has worked with Riello UPS on scores of projects over the years, including the £100 million Titanic Exhibition Centre in 2012, where Ashdale Engineering supplied and commissioned 12 UPSs providing 35kW of protection. McGarry reveals, “We have been working with Ashdale Engineering for more than 20 years. They have supplied and maintained UPS systems at the airport and have always provided us with a reliable and competitive service. Their engineers are highly-trained with OEM certification and they carry the full accreditations we require for all our vendors.”

The Sentryum solution Colin Simms, Operations Director for Ashdale Engineering, explains, “Riello UPS’s new transformerless range, the Sentryum, was the ideal replacement for the existing UPS system. In this case, we supplied a 15kVA single-phase input and output UPS with internal batteries providing a runtime of five minutes.” The choice of supplier provided reassurance to the airport. McGarry says, “We already have several Riello UPS systems on-site and are satisfied with their reliability and features. We monitor them over IP and found the NetMan 204 communications card very easy to install and set up. “So, we were delighted when Ashdale Engineering recommended Riello UPS’s latest transformerless unit for this project.” The Sentryum is Riello UPS’s third generation of transformerless online UPS systems.

In addition to providing routes to UK mainland airports, BIA also serves popular international destinations

The Sentryum is Riello UPS’s third generation of transformerless online UPS systems

It builds on the previous models and includes a whole host of improvements that enhance performance while making it easier and more costeffective to maintain. Available in 10, 15 and 20kVA versions, it delivers unity power factor (kVA = kW) and is capable of exceptional efficiency of up to 96.5% in online double conversion mode, which minimises wasted energy.

Reaping the rewards

“Any loss of power could result in huge disruption to airport services, causing damaging delays for passengers and financial losses to the airport.”

One of the major benefits of the Sentryum range is its three different cabinet sizes. This offers end users various solutions depending on their available floorspace and desired battery runtime. In this case, the Compact (CPT) chassis measures 28cm wide by 70cm high by 84cm deep, so it takes up a footprint of less than 0.25m2 in the airport’s comms room. Another advantage is its versatility. While Belfast International Airport required single-phase input and output, the Sentryum series also offers the option of three-phase input, single-phase output or three-phase input and output. The airport upgrade also saw an external bypass fitted with the Sentryum UPS wired to it. This meant the supply and load cables from the existing UPS setup could feed into this new bypass arrangement. McGarry concludes, “We’re very pleased with the project. Ashdale Engineering was able to manage the UPS changeover with the minimum of disruption. As much work as possible was done during normal hours with final connections made out of hours at a time that suited the airport, resulting in the least downtime possible.”  Riello UPS,



26/08/2020 14:49


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MOVING TOWARDS A CIRCULAR ECONOMY Nigel Harvey, CEO of Recolight, offers suggestions for contractors and end users to become more sustainable, and discusses options for manufacturers of lighting equipment to move towards a circular economy approach.


ircular economy strategy is intended to move us away from the linear economy - in which raw materials are made into products, which are then discarded. Instead, products, sub-assemblies, components, and raw materials are kept in use and reused, maximising their value, and minimising waste and environmental harm. Many organisations are now seeking to be more sustainable, with lighting installers sourcing low energy lighting products to meet the demands of their customers. But to be truly sustainable means moving beyond low energy products. That is now a given. It also now means moving to those products that are manufactured in a sustainable fashion, best exemplified by circular economy principles. The earlier that companies start adopting this approach, the more likely they are to be able to meet and exceed the new requirements. Those companies that have embraced a circular approach are therefore likely to be more competitive in the future.

UK’s 25 Year Environment Plan

Lighting as a service can facilitate the move towards a circular economy

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The Government’s commitment in its 25 Year Environment Plan is to improve the environment for the next generation with zero net emissions by 2050. The Resources and Waste strategy is their blueprint for these commitments. It sets out how resource efficiency will be promoted and the move towards a more circular economy. The Environment Bill will, once passed into law, give the Government a range of new powers to implement circular economy policies, such as wider use of ‘polluter pays’ Extended Producer Responsibility, such as WEEE. They also plan to update the WEEE system to encourage more reuse of lighting and other electrical products, to increase the recycling of products, tackle online marketplace non-compliance, and encourage eco-design. This includes proposals for ‘eco modulation’ of WEEE charges, which would see producers of environmentally better products receiving lower WEEE bills.

Standards for lighting manufacturers

Sustainable options for end users Much can be done now by end users who have sustainability at the heart of their organisation and for those wishing to adopt a circular economy approach. Lighting as a service, a business model in which products are leased rather than sold, can facilitate the move towards a circular economy. This is because the original manufacturer can retain ownership of the equipment. That also means product which reaches end of life can be returned to the original producer for possible upgrade and repair – with recycling only a fall-back when such alternatives are not possible. Fluorescent tubes and other mercury containing lamps such as compact fluorescents, and sodium lamps should be recycled. Re-use is not an option. Traditional luminaires specifically designed for use with fluorescent tubes should also be recycled. In virtually all cases, it will not be possible to convert them to LED, although installing retrofit LED tubes rather than replacing fittings is a way to extend life, and so reduce the amount of waste arising. Integrated LED luminaires are not yet entering the waste stream in significant quantities but are clearly being put into service in large numbers. It goes without saying that installing LED technologies, with their lower energy consumption can materially reduce carbon footprints. However, it is important to note that legislation is changing to require producers of integrated LED luminaires to ensure that the light source is replaceable, to support circular economy principles. LED lamps are generally not reusable. Whilst there have been a few which have been designed to be repairable, they are not widely available. Recycling therefore remains the best option when LED lamps reach end of life. Furthermore, some business end users and many consumers have difficulty in distinguishing LED lamps from mercury containing gas discharge lamps. As a result, it is best practice to place waste LED lamps in the same container as fluorescent lamps.

Companies that have embraced a circular approach are likely to be more competitive in the future

Lighting producers should start considering how some of the principles can be included in the products they design and manufacture. A new suite of material efficiency standards is currently being developed by CENELEC. They will capture key principles of product design for the circular economy and will apply to energy related products – including many lamps and luminaires. The new standards include requirements for durability, repairability, upgradeability, design for disassembly, and recyclability. Of particular relevance are new standards that can be used to assess the proportion of re-used components and recycled raw materials in new products. Whilst Brexit inevitably creates uncertainty around whether or not these standards will be implemented in the UK, they will be required for products sold in the EU. As a result, lighting producers should start considering how some of the principles might be included in the products they design and manufacture. In particular, some could face technical challenges on the incorporation of recycled plastic into new products.

What can be done now by lighting manufacturers?

“Much can be done now by end users who have sustainability at the heart of their organisation.”

Given that the standards are not yet finalised, two approaches are particularly relevant. The first is to move towards a modular approach when designing luminaires, incorporating an end-user replaceable LED module. This has already become mandatory for most lighting products in the EU’s Single Lighting Regulation. The benefit is quite clear. While we all expect LED technology to have a long service life, failures can happen. And taking a modular approach avoids the need to discard the entire luminaire, just because one component has failed. That reduces cost, and also ensures the luminaire is kept in service rather than being sent to waste. This approach ticks the ‘reduce’ and ‘re-use’ boxes – without needing to resort to recycling. The second is for producers to start investigating how to incorporate a proportion of plastic of recycled origin in the production of new products. It seems likely that standards will make this mandatory, or at least make it financially attractive, but producers may face some challenges, both in identifying recycled raw materials of the right quality and consistency, and also incorporating them in new products. It may involve building new partnerships with suppliers of recycled plastic. The benefit of such an approach is clear for environmental reasons, reducing the reliance on virgin materials, and obtaining value from recycled materials.  Recolight,



26/08/2020 14:13



























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WE COVER THE UK Recolight operate the UK’s largest collection network for fluorescent and LED lamps. Untitled-2 1

21/08/2020 11:19



LIGHTING TRENDS IN THE SPOTLIGHT Anouk Brown, in charge of Marketing & eCommerce at National Lighting, looks at the top five trends expected to make waves in interior lighting design this winter.


ighting is becoming a truly central piece of our indoor room designs. From low profile spotlights to statement pendants, the end user has discovered the ease of manipulating their home’s atmosphere just by cleverly positioning light fixtures. Designs vary greatly from room to room, and what works in modern kitchens will not do for the master bedroom. This year, the autumn/winter lighting trends reflect function as well as style, with technology being a main driver. Here are the top five prominent consumer lighting trends every contractor should take note of:

Trend 1: Soft gold – our most popular finish

Homeowners are increasingly in favour of soft gold fixtures

Copper is well and truly out. This season, we take on a modern take on metal fixtures with warm brass tones. Elegant yet subtle, the hue of these fixtures falls between somewhat a silver and gold, making them perfect to pair with natural materials like marble and reclaimed wood, which are dominating the interior design world this winter. How to use it: Homeowners have fallen in love with this type of metal. Soft gold fixtures come in a variety of styles and designs and blend with almost any kind of décor. We particularly see a rise in dining and living room pendants and semi flush fittings that highlight soft gold frames. Use these lights to accentuate soft coloured backdrops in the kitchen or the living room. Alternatively, simply accentuate the beauty of a bland corner by adding an eye-catching table lamp, helping to illuminate and attract the attention of your guests. All in all, we expect this trend to be around for quite a while.

Vintage Edison-style LED bulbs are able to bring a feeling of warmth into homes

Trend 4: Art Deco is making a comeback

Trend 2: Retro is back, but more refined The industrial trend makes way for a more refined and softer retro look this season. Focusing on neutral colours and metal detail, this sleeker and modernised trend brings us alternative colour tones with complementary lighting designs, as well as being mixed with hand-blown glass shades and high-detail fixtures. How to use it: The 2020 take on the retro trend falls towards a more laid-back and fun design – and one you can apply in any space within your home. We see that this trend is most popular for use in kitchens and work areas, as a refined retro fitting is a small piece of art. We recommend using these types of fixtures when your customers are looking for a quick design update that will function as a centrepiece above breakfast tables and bars. Modern retro lighting is perfect for use in 21st century interiors.

“The 2020 take on the retro trend falls towards a more laid-back and fun design – and one you can apply in any space within your home.”

Trend 3: Exposed Edison-style bulbs bring warmth to our homes Vintage Edison-style LED bulbs bring sentimental filament designs back to our homes. Available in all shapes and sizes – such as geometric globes and ribbed amber pear shapes – these eye-catching exposed light sources are as energyefficient as they are beautiful. Seeing a significant price drop this year, a single retro filament now starts at prices costing less than £7. It is the perfect way to creating that nostalgic incandescent look in homes whilst using modern long-lasting LEDs without having to bust any budget.

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How to use it: Simple ceiling roses and monotonous floor lamps where light bulbs are exposed can be transformed into warming and unique accent pieces by adding a vintage Edison-style LED filament. Hinting towards the retro trend, these bulbs create a comfortable feel that is reflected in hundreds of modern lighting designs this season.

Clean lines can help to create a minimalist feel

For years, both mid-century and Art Deco light fittings have been a go-to favourite for interior designers and architects. Emphasising straight lines, unique glasswork and a balance of art and form, this season’s Art Deco collections show more natural shapes that combine form with aesthetics. For anyone looking to create the hotel boutique-look in their homes, this design trend is a match made in lighting heaven. How to use it: Artful lighting can be a tricky style to work with. What looks great in-store can overwhelm a homely dining space. We strongly recommend looking at geometric designs this season, adding informal accent pieces to your home that look fun and laid back – creating playful light patterns through their use of glasswork. You’ll find these all over the market in the coming months, with no shortage of variety in shapes, sizes and finishes.

Trend 5: Clean lines make for clutter-free minds Modern décors focus on minimalist, clean and tidy forms. From sofas to light fixtures, this design trend does not leave much room for ornamental accessories. To complement a clean styled space, homeowners are opting for simple lighting designs that are both low profile and non-distractive. Neutral, soft colours and materials are matched with simple forms and seamless finishes. How to use it: The beauty of this trend is that you can work these clean-lined lighting designs into any room and function. From ceiling pendants to downlights, to achieve the minimalist look your customers are after we recommend focusing on simple standalone fittings (rather than being crowded by clutter). Each light ought to serve the specific purpose of accentuating the openness and clutter-free aesthetics of a home.  National Lighting,



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OVIA SHINES IN ITS VERY FIRST YEAR It has been less than a year since Ovia was officially launched as an independent lighting company within the Scolmore Group. Here, Mike Collins – the company’s Sales Director – talks about the company’s early success.


The U-Lite, a slimline linear LED light, was specifically designed on the back of contractor feedback

e set ourselves an ambitious challenge right from the beginning. From a starting point in May last year, we gave ourselves just six months to research and develop a comprehensive range of lighting and lighting control products. The key focus during this time was to undertake as much market research as possible, which included engaging with the contractor/end user to ensure we had the right range of products ready for launch. They told us they wanted a broad range of lighting products that are quick and easy to install and will save them time and money on any given project. We felt that we were hitting the market at the right time to fill a gap for a broad spectrum of entry level lighting products that are highly competitively priced and that offer a range of unique features and benefits, and are unmatched by competitors. By the time of the official launch in November last year, we had a collection of more than 400 products and had established an experienced sales team to help deliver them to market. The products were developed to cover a wide range of applications – domestic, amenity, commercial, industrial, utility and floodlighting – and we have since added a whole new emergency lighting collection.

Instant feedback

“Earlier this year, we launched a dedicated lighting design service, allowing customers to access free lighting design schemes for their commercial projects.”

We’ve got some fantastic products in the collection and had a great opportunity to get some feedback from the industry when we took them to ELEX at Sandown in November and at Alexandra Palace in January. The most common reaction was that contractors felt they were being listened to and we were bringing out products that cater directly for them. We’ve had some great comments. A couple of contractors were praising the Ovia Inceptor Nano integrated LED downlight, which they have found ideal for jobs where there has been a tight ceiling void and said they wished they’d known about Nano before. Another described Nano as ‘bulletproof’ and he has fitted thousands. Others have been impressed with the U-Lite, which was one of the products specifically designed on the back of contractor feedback. This is a slimline Linear LED light which comes in three lengths and, because it integrates the diffuser and gear tray and anchors them to the base, it guarantees a hassle-free installation. Its design means you can complete your installation without having to fully disassemble the product to mount and wire it – everything you need is pre-fitted to the base. We have invested a lot of time and resources to get the products and the Ovia message out to wholesale customers and contractors, and this seems to have been well received. We know that contractors have been requesting Ovia products in the wholesalers as a result of reading about them.

Product focus Having added a comprehensive 60-product range of emergency lighting in February, we have also added a number of new products with the contractor in mind. The Inceptor Hion LED Dimmable Highbay fitting is now also available in a white finish to sit alongside the black version originally launched. This will widen the appeal of the product and provide installers with more options to satisfy a range of applications. Inceptor Hion comes in two versions: a 0(1)-10V dimmable and a Microwave Sensor version. Both boast an IP65 and IK10 rating – IK10 is one of the highest degrees of mechanical protection defined by BS EN 62262: 2002 standard. They are each available in three wattages – 100W, 150W and 200W options. They come with 3m pre-installed H05RN-F cable for quick and easy installation and offer a range of features. They are dimmable, deliver a 90°

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beam angle, offer 54,000-hour lifetime and come with a six-year warranty. We have also introduced a new version of the hugely popular Inceptor EVO LED bulkhead range with white metal housing. Inceptor EVO already offers black metal housings in three styles – Circular, Eyelid and Grille – and the addition of white versions across all three styles will further enhance the appeal of the range and open up more opportunities for installers looking for a particular look and finish for different applications.

Free lighting design service Earlier this year, we launched a dedicated lighting design service, allowing customers to access free lighting design schemes for their commercial projects. The free service is available to electrical contracting companies, M&E consultants and anyone involved in the specification of lighting and lighting control equipment. The aim is to provide expertise in choosing the right products and solutions to create a scheme that meets all the requirements and objectives of the project in question, and that is compliant with all the relevant regulations and standards.

Challenging times Coronavirus has thrown up major challenges to everyone and all businesses, but whilst we were working with a much scaled back operation in the early months of the pandemic, our stock levels remained high and we were able to continue to supply our full range of products to the professional electrical market, through the wholesale channel. New product development has remained a key part of our strategy this year and the Ovia team will continue to engage with contractors throughout 2020. In the absence of many of the industry’s leading events this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, we have been reaching out via our dedicated YouTube channel, SGTV, along with a series of weekly podcasts, and have been getting some great engagement. We would like to see Ovia as the one stop shop for contractors for all their lighting solutions, delivered through the reliable wholesaler channel. Our aim is to have products from the Ovia range listed with supporting wholesalers, and we will be working to generate further demand from the specification teams working on major projects.  Ovia,



26/08/2020 16:44



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STAIR LIGHTING ON THE RISE Roman Jarocki of Magic Stair Lighting explains some of the latest advances as it relates to stair controllers and the installation of LED lighting on staircases.


ith the development of LED technology, new possibilities in the lighting of stairs have appeared. A new trend in stair lighting is multi-point, low-voltage LED 12VDC or 24VDC lighting with intelligent control, allowing for safe, effective, comfortable and energy saving lighting of the stairs. LED stair lighting looks particularly decorative if it is mounted in the central risers of the stairs, illuminating the plane of the step below. These can be special staircase luminaires or custom-made LED strips, mounted or glued under the toe of the stairs. If the structure of the stairs is attached to the wall, you can install LED fixtures in the wall, usually 15cm above the surface of the steps, illuminating each of them separately. Surprising effects are produced by the lamps built into the plane of the step by the wall or by the balustrade, because when they shine upwards, they bring out the texture of the wall or decorative elements of the railing. Some people also choose to illuminate the balustrade or the landing of the stairs near the floor. The standard is white lighting (warm, cold or neutral) due to the greater usability and better lighting of the stairs. However, in interior decoration, there is sometimes a need to use coloured lighting and you can easily use single-colour LED strips (e.g. blue, green, yellow, red). Such multi-point lighting is very decorative, and in addition, it allows for better lighting of individual stair steps than in the case of traditional overhead lighting – so the stairs are safer for people walking on them.

Stair LED lighting controllers To control multi-point LED lighting of the stairs, special digital LED drivers called ‘Intelligent LED Stair Controllers’ are used. Due to the properties of LED technology, staircase controllers can use the PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) method to control the brightness of individual LED lamps. The use of LED stair controllers introduces new decorative possibilities to the lighting of the stairs, such as smooth lighting, gentle backlight after dusk and effective animations, turning the sometimes sad staircase into a real showcase of the house. By controlling the brightness of LED lighting using the PWM method, you can achieve various degrees of smoothness of switching on and off the lamps, from sharp to very gentle. Moreover, lamps can light up simultaneously or sequentially, step by step, creating an effective, flowing wave of LED light with varying degrees of its forehead and tail brightness.

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Most of the stair controllers on the market can be configured with the help of simple or more advanced configurators built into the controller, but the most convenient way is the configuration using a mobile application that communicates with the staircase controller using Bluetooth Low Energy standard.

Stair motion sensors

It is best to plan the electrical lighting of the stairs before finishing the stairs, Roman explains

“The use of LED stair controllers introduces new decorative possibilities to the lighting of the stairs, turning the sometimes sad staircase into a real showcase of the house.”

Stair controllers also introduce other functionalities – such as turning on the lighting only for a specified period of time – which gives the comfort of forgetting to turn off the lighting and saves energy, showing a warning when lights are about to switch off, or controlling the illumination of the handrail.

LED stair lighting control systems Stair controllers can work autonomously or be part of a smart home/building system. As standalone solutions, they can be activated in a traditional way by buttons, but the best functionality is obtained in cooperation with specialised stair motion sensors and dusk sensors, with which they can create intelligent, automated systems controlling the lighting of stairs. As a part of a smart home system, they are activated by potential free outputs of the system. The stair controller reads signals from the control inputs and controls the lighting according to the program stored in its memory. Usually, motion sensors, buttons, smart building system outputs, a twilight sensor, or a programmable astronomical clock are connected to the control inputs of the controller, thus ensuring various control methods depending on the movement and time of day (evening, night, day). The operation of staircase controllers can be influenced by changing the values of configuration parameters. Intelligent stair controllers usually allow you to adjust the parameters of the controller to the implemented installation (the minimum is to set the number of lamps/steps) and to adjust the basic operating parameters to the user’s preferences (e.g. times of switching on, lights on and switching off phases; lighting on/off smoothness; brightness, backlight brightness, etc.) in different parts of the day.

Stair motion sensors are an important element of the stair lighting system. Good stair sensors should have a narrow detection angle and a well-defined, adjustable range so that they do not turn on the lighting when people pass by the stairs. For this reason, PIR sensors with an indefinite range, popular in alarm systems, should not be used to detect movement on the stairs. The function of stair sensors is very well fulfilled by optical reflection sensors, which, due to their one-element structure and well-defined, adjustable range, can also be used without any problems for the recently very popular open stairs, e.g. carpet stairs.

Smartphone applications Smart stairs with a smartphone application are the most advanced system of modern stair lighting control, using advanced LED stair controllers and sensors as well as appropriate light sources, functioning independently or as part of a larger smart home system. A truly intelligent staircase communicates with the user via a smartphone/tablet application, ensuring convenient operation, intuitive installation configuration, adjustment to user preferences and access to diagnostic service functions. The purpose of intelligent control is to provide the user with decorative effects in line with their preferences and appropriate utility benefits, such as the right level of lighting on the stairs, safety, comfort, energy efficiency and durability.

Planning the installation It is best to plan the electrical lighting of the stairs before finishing the stairs. First, collect the necessary elements, including the appropriate model of the stair controller, LED strips or LED luminaires, stair motion sensors; and then select good quality LED power supply, equipped with the necessary protection circuits, before then planning the arrangement of all installation elements and the location of the cables. When making cable connections between the controller and lamps, pay attention to how the individual lamps in the lighting system of the stairs will be controlled: each lamp separately or all lamps together.  Magic Stair Lighting,



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LIGHTING THE WAY FORWARD Shahid Khan, ECA Technical Manager, looks at how automated lighting and smart buildings can help to drive energy efficiency.


f there were ever a silver lining to the coronavirus crisis, it is the renewed drive from all areas of industry and government to recover from the pandemic as a greener, more energy efficient society. Add to that the recent advances in green technology and climate change legislation, such as the Net Zero Carbon 2050 target, and energy efficiency becomes a no-brainer for clients looking to build greener, cleaner and smarter assets and facilities managers looking to upgrade their buildings.

Is smart lighting here to stay? Lighting in buildings is a major source of global carbon emissions, estimated at 20-40% of a building’s total operational energy consumption – not to mention the embodied carbon costs associated with the manufacturing of lighting products. Efficiency is a broad term on its own, but in the context for lighting, it boils down to keeping the energy expenditure of a building at the lowest possible level without sacrificing user comfort and operational requirements. There is an almost overwhelming number of possible approaches to smart lighting installations for both wired and wireless networks – DMX 512, KNX, Zigbee, Bluetooth, to name a few. But for simple yet functional automated lighting controls, DALI takes the prize.

DALI: a history

In addition to other options, lights can be programmed to come on once the first person enters the office in the morning

DALI – Digital Addressable Lighting Interface – is an interface protocol for digital communication between electronic lighting equipment (electronic ballasts, etc.). It is not a product, but an open-source protocol: a common set of rules and commands that each device in a network must follow. DALI is supported by most global lighting control systems and component manufacturers. Therefore, a network can be installed using simple five-core LV

cabling with no segregation required, and a relatively straightforward commissioning regime, making it one of the most costeffective solutions out there. Each component of an open source DALI network is assigned an ‘address’ which a central computer uses to communicate its pre-programmed instructions. For example, a set of lights can be programmed to come on once the first person enters the office in the morning, switch off when no-one is present in a room or on a floor, brighten or dim throughout the day or cause the actuation of solar blinds in response to the amount of natural light coming from outside. The possibilities are (almost) limitless, so long as the maximum number of nodes (unique addresses) is limited to 64 in a single network and are based on the programming sequence of sensors and actuators which respond to the set points input into the system at the commissioning stage. The added comfort, energy savings and cost savings provided by DALI systems helps them pay for themselves relatively quickly, particularly in larger offices and communal dwellings like university halls of residence, hospitals or care homes.

Smarter buildings, smarter FM Smart lighting systems can make life easier for facilities managers. Emergency lighting can be tested without human interaction, so long as the lights have been programmed correctly. Parameters can be set up to automatically test the fittings monthly, six-monthly and annually, as per the requirements of BS EN 5266, and generate electronic reports. These reports can then be held locally on servers, emailed to specific individuals or held in a cloud-based system to provide a robust record of maintenance. As each ballast has a unique address, fault-finding also becomes an easier process. Fault reports can be automatically generated and narrowed

down to easily identify a faulty component. A data-informed decision can then be made to dispatch an engineer to fix the problem – saving time and money in the process.

New challenges

“DALI is not a product, but an open-source protocol: a common set of rules and commands that each device in a network must follow.”

As with any new system, there are risks and challenges that contractors and installers should recognise. Automatic lighting controls can present a steep learning curve for FMs new to smart systems. DALI is a great first step, owing to its simplicity and ease of installation. Initial programming can also be laborious when first installing a system. As with any open source protocol, there is an added risk of cyber-attacks. However, this can be mitigated by using closed networks and having robust security measures in place. Engineers should have a strong knowledge of basic programming and security systems before making smart lighting installations a part of their arsenal.

Connecting to HVAC DALI is specific only to lighting controls, but for combined control of lighting and HVAC (which uses a different open source protocol called BACnet), different protocols can be made to work in concert using a ‘gateway’. A gateway will translate one protocol, in this case DALI, into one that BACnet can utilise and which can be controlled using one building management system, via one user interface. The compromise here is that the speed of data transmission is slowed – though it is still largely adequate for building services applications. Although somewhat removed from the world of the electrician, it will become increasingly important for contractors and installers to be aware of HVAC automation systems as demand for these, and for total building automation and control systems, is likely to rise.

Lighting the way forward In short, automatic digital lighting controls have been around for a while and are most definitely here to stay. They make for better-performing, energy efficient buildings and can be tailored to an almost limitless range of user needs. Installers should see this as an opportunity to grow and offer much-needed expertise to FM teams across the country. To find out more about smart control systems, and how ECA can support building controls and smart building installations, visit building-controls-bms-bems.  ECA,

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LIGHTING The Eminere was chosen for its brightness and versatility, along with its rich and beautiful colours

EVERY COLOUR OF THE RAINBOW Architectural lighting brand, Anolis, recently installed its new Eminere LED fixtures at a station underpass in West Yorkshire. The first such installation of the products in the UK, the LEDS have completely transformed the area.


he newly lit Mirfield Station underpass in West Yorkshire is the first UK installation for the new Eminere RGBW LED fixtures from architectural lighting brand Anolis – a Robe business – with 16 luminaires installed as part of an improvement works scheme undertaken by train operator Grand Central and partner JMD Rain in conjunction with Kirklees Council and Network Rail.

A vibrant and welcoming transformation

The Emineres are pre-programmed into a range of colour combinations to celebrate occasions such as St. Patrick’s Day and Pride

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The new lighting transforms the previously dull, moody, and uninviting dark space on Station Road beneath the railway tracks – through which passengers must pass before accessing the station – into a vibrant, welcoming, contemporary, and comfortable space. The Emineres were specified by lighting designer Kevin Dugdale from Winchesterbased Designs for Lighting, which is a specialist in street and public space lighting.

Dugdale has been working as a consultant to Kirklees Council, the organisation overseeing the improvement works in and around the station, and the lighting scheme was developed closely with the late David Wilson and representatives of Network Rail. Dugdale drew up the lighting design, which also involves two rows of neutral white LED ‘general’ lighting and considered several options to get a desired colourful effect running down one side of the underpass’ brickwork. The coloured lighting effect needed to provide rich and bold hues and texturing to compliment a detailed, bright, lively, multi-coloured mural running along the opposite side of the underpass, depicting the history and people of the area. The mural was delivered by a community partnership comprising schools, youth groups, the local fire station, assorted businesses, and Mirfield Station at the end of 2019.

The new lighting has transformed the underpass into a vibrant, welcoming, contemporary, and comfortable space

A versatile and colourful solution The Eminere was chosen for its brightness and versatility, along with its rich and beautiful colours and its quality made-in-Europe engineering, as well as for the “outstanding” support that Kevin received from the Anolis UK team throughout the tender and specification process – a process project-managed for Anolis by Phil Howard. This involved demos and site visits, lots of discussion and a series of imaginative and sensible solutions. “The input, the ideas, practical offerings and overall customer service from Anolis was excellent,” he states. While they wanted a fixture that could also offer an excellent white, colours were a defining criterion as the current default colour scheme during the COVID-19 pandemic is a multicoloured rainbow look in support of the NHS and frontline workers.

The Emineres are also pre-programmed into a range of colour combinations to celebrate occasions like St. Patrick’s Day, Pride, etc and to reflect Grand Central’s corporate colours – and of course, more recently ‘NHS blue’ in support of health, care and essential workers during the pandemic. The 16 x 1.2 metre Eminere strips are fixed neatly and securely to the top of the wall along one side of the underpass. The new Eminere Luminaires are designed for multiple exterior and indoor applications and are available with a variety of lens options to cover a range of requirements. For this installation, narrow lenses were chosen to tightly focus the light and ensure the installation is eye-catching and has good impact. The 18-bit colour mixing ensures smooth dimming and a fine degree of colour tuning. Studiotech from Manchester carried out the installation, programming and commissioning element of the project, incorporating an Osram EQ system to control the lighting.  Anolis, | Robe,



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The variety of switches and components available is triggering all sorts of ideas in terms of future integration

THE VALUE OF SMART LIGHTING Mark Booth, Managing Director at Gira UK, looks at this year’s lighting trends.

Mark Booth, Managing Director, Gira UK


Lighting – Gira.indd 35

Many people still view these essential pieces of lighting equipment as purely functional with nothing to do with design – and yet they are usually located in prominent positions on a wall, at eye line and are handled multiple times a day with the expectation of high performance, without a second thought. In 2020, trends will pay more attention to these kinds of details to enhance the look and feel of an interior, as well as improve functionality and user convenience. The progression of KNX system technology throughout the home and more recently in the smart home, has made linking devices much less complicated, so that a variety of lighting solutions and

hen it comes to choosing new switches and socket outlets for the modern home, there is a wealth of options available which will help designers and retailers alike to focus on an element which has previously been overlooked. In addition to conventional plastic, you can now find lighting design solutions in innovative colourways, wood-framed fittings, linoleum, stainless steel, aluminium, chrome and even glass and metallic-effect finishes.



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27/08/2020 12:42


Anticipating the experience required of the user is the next frontier for lighting design

The smart home possibilities that we see today are only the tip of the iceberg


systems can share one single, simple network and work together as required. Therefore, you can offer more ways to control and influence lighting protocols depending on the type of smart living experience your customer aspires to. I think the greater desire for personalised technology into the home means that regardless of our age or background, we will want easy to use lighting controls which support the way we want to live our lives. For the older market, this might mean an extra emphasis on clearly configured controls and call systems and for a young family – ensuring that controls can be child-proofed would make sense. The sheer variety of switches and components available is triggering all sorts of ideas in terms of future integration, so the smart home possibilities that we see today are only the tip of the iceberg in terms of having highly-individualised interior spaces, which will know exactly what we like and when we like it. In fact, anticipating the experience required of the

user is the next frontier for lighting design as, when combined with sensor technology, it will be even easier for a smart home to adjust to seasonal changes, so that it will understand that a summer morning requires a different lighting scene to a winter morning, for example. There is also the possibility that as home technology becomes more integrated with well-being apps and equipment, that it can automatically adjust the lighting levels required as we age – as it has been established that our eyes require more light for reading and close-work after the big 4-0 than in our twenties. Of course, at present, individual scenes can already be set for home working, studying and home cinema experiences, but as personalisation continues to drive so much of today’s home tech innovations, I anticipate that the next decade will see lighting systems become the ‘virtual concierge/housekeeper/butler’ in the smart home, helping to direct and shape the routines of the residents. The trend for indoor-outdoor living is also bringing increasing opportunities for

“The trend for indooroutdoor living is also bringing increasing opportunities for the lighting professional.”

the lighting professional, as homeowners are looking to capitalise on making the garden a space for entertaining and relaxing, with ambient lighting, all year round. By virtue of this investment in the home, we are seeing that products which combine both lighting and security functions are in demand for early adapters. Furthermore, we anticipate that multifunctional technology which is robust and weatherproof will become an ever-growing market segment as more consumers discover the benefits of extending control inside and out to enhance the value and utility of their property. There is no doubt that smart lighting is extremely valuable to both the overall design and function of a property, whether it is designed with reactive or sensitive operation, remote access via smartphone apps or voice control, Bluetooth connectivity, programming and control or, quite simply, offering improved utility and convenience to end users. We are also seeing that residents of automated homes appreciate the benefits of running ‘scenes’ to make the property appear occupied if they are not in residence, with lights coming on and blinds coming down to mimic a ‘lived in’ effect: proving lighting has a vital part to play in helping to maintain security. In fact, premium manufacturers are now designing furniture that accommodates these types of solutions at the manufacturing stage. By fabricating the furniture to accommodate smart solutions as standard, we can collectively make it possible for designers and planners to integrate all types of intelligent build applications in one single KNX installation. This opens the door to ever greater creativity throughout the design process and in terms of a sustainable use of energy – including renewable options captured from solar panels and bio-mass, which are likely to appeal to a forward-thinking generation of owner-occupiers and tenants as climate change is set to continue to inform lifestyle choices and building regulations, going forwards. Each design line by Gira is able to support more than 300 functions so flexible indoor lighting can come to life for the end customer with ease and provide an infallible solution for professional electricians, installers and system integrators.  Gira,

Smart lighting is extremely valuable to both the overall design and function of a property

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LED UPGRADE TO DELIVER SAVINGS FOR PRIMARY SCHOOL With assistance from Energys Group, Osmani Primary School is expecting to significantly reduce its annual energy consumption, following an upgrade to LED lighting financed by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets’ Carbon Offset Fund.


he team at Osmani Primary was reasonably content with the quality of its existing lighting – and lighting maintenance wasn’t an issue for them either, as they can call on their PFI contract for standard maintenance work. However, like everyone, the school was keen to do what it could to reduce energy bills. The management team was aware that the upfront investment costs for a retrofit to LED would not be covered by the PFI contract and would therefore be prohibitive for the school to consider. The London Borough of Tower Hamlets supports schools in the borough to improve their energy efficiency and reduce their carbon emissions through its Carbon Offset Fund. This funding source provides the upfront capital for LED replacement projects, thereby allowing the school to repay the cost through the energy savings realised during the payback period. Importantly, the authority also provides a forum where business managers from all the schools within the Borough can meet. Runa Begum, Business Manager at Osmani Primary School, is clear about the value of this forum as a place where ideas and information can be shared.

The team at Osmani Primary worked with Tower Hamlets’ energy managers to develop their case for financial support from the borough’s Carbon Offset Fund for their proposed LED lighting upgrade. The process requires each school to obtain three quotes from potential providers and Energys Group – an energy retrofit solutions business – was one of the three invited to submit a proposal. As Begum says, “Energys Group offered a comprehensive proposal at a highly competitive price and, importantly, they came highly recommended by other business managers within Tower Hamlets. It’s important to us to know that we are working with an organisation that others rate.” This solution offered by Energys Group proposed the installation of a standard LED lighting upgrade across entire school, including outdoor lights and upgrades to LED of all existing emergency lights and standalone units. The list of installed lighting types includes: IP rated LED batten fixtures, LED panels, LED wall lights, LED downlight, outdoor IP65 LED wall light, flood lights and emergency lighting. Energys Group advised that the major part of the project would be completed over the course of a week but that they may need to undertake some out of hours work in the following week. To minimise disruption to

The school was keen to do what it could to reduce energy bills

The LED upgrade is set to deliver £7.7K annual savings for Osmani Primary School

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teaching schedules, the work was scheduled to take place during the October 2019 half term break. As predicted, the majority of the work was completed during that week but there was some evening work in the week following. Osmani Primary was able to offer extended access to the site from 6am until 10pm and this was very useful to the Energys Group project team. “The installation went very smoothly indeed,” says Begum. “I am now confidently looking forward to measuring our energy savings over the first 12 months of use, to ensure they are in line with the forecasts provided.” Raj Gunasekaran, Business Development Manager at Energys Group says, “We are delighted to install our energy efficient, modern LED technology at Osmani Primary School. We know that our LED lighting will not only help the school to reduce energy costs – it has positive impacts on student wellbeing and learning outcomes too by reducing eyestrain and improving alertness and cognition.”  Energys Group,



27/08/2020 10:39

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Gira Cube 26.08.20 14:10 26/08/2020 14:44



BUILDING ON THE LIGHT BULB MOMENT Edison Lighting Direct, a supplier of high-quality LED luminaires, discusses how design and innovation of modern LED lighting fixtures help today’s installers and building users with cost savings and improved efficiency.


etween 1878 and 1880, Thomas Edison and his team tested more than 3,000 designs of light bulbs and in November 1879, Edison filed a patent for an electric lamp with a carbon filament, later known as the incandescent bulb. The lighting industry has come a long way since then, not least with the innovation, design and manufacture of today’s modern LED luminaires. LEDs have an average life of 50,000 hours, they run cooler, are more energy efficient, have greater lumen output, better colour rendition and, they are not susceptible to vibration. You can expect modern LED light sources to last on average around 10 years (of normal domestic usage between 6-8 hours per day). Contrast this with an old-fashioned tungsten lamp that would only have lasted 1,000 hours, it is clear to see how far the industry has evolved. Figures for 2019 show that 259,000 electricians and electrical installers were registered and recorded as working in the UK. Figures for the last decade show this level suffered minor fluctuations; however, there was a steady target audience for the lighting industry. When you contrast this with the knowledge that some 753 enterprises are involved in selling lighting products within the UK market, it illustrates just how fierce competition is in the marketplace.

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The importance of innovation

Impact of the PRS standards

Cutting-edge design and innovation of products can mean the difference between creating a popular best seller over an ordinary, mediocre product. Modern downlights have been developed to make installation easier and faster, with the emphasis on fast wired connectors and loop in/loop out inputs etc. The average time for installation of an old-style downlight would have been some three or four minutes. Compare this with more modern fastwired downlighters and the electrician can, on average, now connect 10 luminaires in the same time. Another design feature which is labour-saving and makes some downlighters easier to install are those that incorporate fast installation ceiling clips.

In June this year, the Government published The Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020. As a result of this, many landlords are having to refurbish their properties, many of which consist of older housing stock, to comply with the regulations and there are a range of products on the market whose innovations will help with this, including downlights that are manufactured with ultra-efficient integral drivers, thus allowing them to be fitted within smaller ceiling voids. In addition to this, best practice design of LED luminaires allows efficient heat dissipation from the fitting, thereby ensuring safety and giving the fitting a longer life. All new generation LED luminaires are now energy efficient, with between 80-90% of energy being turned into light and their cost saving will, in time, pay for the original upgrade of the luminaires. Correlated colour temperature (CCT) is now very popular in many lighting schemes. For example, CCT in ceiling LED panels can be selected to mimic the required colour rendition. Studies have shown that different colour temperatures of light benefit different applications for hospitals, offices, schools etc. The ability for a building manager to be able to change the light temperature adds a new dimension of flexibility to these spaces. Edison Lighting Direct stocks a wide range of dedicated LED lighting, including downlights, ceiling panels, high bays, battens and emergency lighting.

Installation of the luminaire Prior to installation of the luminaire into the ceiling aperture, the springs are engaged in a vertical position and then, as the lighting fixture is inserted, the side stays on the fitting catch the edge of the ceiling cut-out, causing the clips to spring downwards, thus holding the luminaire in place. This installation method is much easier to carry out than those products using traditional clips. In addition, the smart spring clips do not damage the cut-out aperture. The savings delivered by these combined features can be clearly identified in terms of reduced installation time for the electrician. Development of materials over the last 30 years has allowed lighting fixtures to become more cost effective, lighter in weight, and more robust. This has enabled manufacturers to recycle their products more effectively, fulfilling their corporate and social responsibilities. LED lamps do not contain any toxic compounds or elements as well as being fully recyclable. The lighting industry is about to progress further by introducing legislation which establishes new measurements for energy efficiency that relate more specifically to LED products. Ultimately, the Government wants more efficient products on the market and is encouraging us to become more energy aware in our homes and at work. Installing efficient and good quality lighting will also help to reduce your carbon footprint by anything up to a third.

“The lighting industry is about to introduce legislation which establishes new measurements for energy efficiency that relate more specifically to LED products.”

Edison Lighting Direct,



26/08/2020 16:35

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25/08/2020 10:24




Ten-pin bowling venues are now able to welcome back customers after being closed for nearly five months

With indoor entertainment venues starting to re-open across the UK, LED specialist, Ventola Projects, is aiding the leisure industry’s recovery efforts with a range of inspiring and safety-conscious solutions.


Leicestershire lighting and electrical installations company recently helped to assist the leisure industry in its quest to ease public safety concerns and enhance the customer experience ahead of the longawaited reopening of indoor entertainment venues on August 15th. Ventola Projects has supported many venues with the installation of a wide range of innovative lighting and gaming solutions that will not only reassure consumers that they are COVID-secure, but also help them stand out from the crowd.

Customer safety fears While some parts of the experience may have changed, creative lighting designs from Ventola can help compensate for this

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Many commentators forecast a widespread reduction in public demand for leisure and entertainment amid fears that venues might be overcrowded and that activities might be unsafe. As a result, with potentially less visitors, attracting customers is more important than ever.

Look at children’s soft play centres, for instance. Infection concerns dictate that ball-pits are no longer permitted. Given ball-pits often play an important role in safety – providing a soft landing for children going down a slide, for example – venues have also had to close those with steeper descents. As venues install new equipment with shallower inclines, Ventola Projects has created gaming solutions that allow children to coordinate their own timed slide and climbing frame races. Instead of throwing balls at each other at the bottom, they can now compete against their friends or try to beat the fastest times of the day and all-time. And, as well as giving kids more of a fitness workout, they’re getting something extra from the experience that they would never have done before.

Bowled over by new LEDs It has been said many times recently that technology has accelerated by five years in five months. While that is undoubtedly true, the sentiment is rarely applied to soft play centres or, indeed, to bowling alleys – another area in which Ventola Projects is enhancing the customer experience. With Ten Entertainment enjoying the support of the Leicestershire electrical specialists at several of its UK venues, the archetypal alley may never look or feel the same, as Ventola Projects fits the new range of VAvR LED lighting systems it developed during the early stages of lockdown. The energy efficient range of solutions can project light shows on to individual lanes, using colour-changing and glow effects to enhance the bowling experience. The technology can also be geared up to illuminate different non-bowling areas of the facility, for example, to ensure people don’t access areas restricted under COVID measures.

Hand sanitising stations in shops and leisure centres are now a familiar sight across the country

“It has been said many times recently that technology has accelerated by five years in five months.”

Adapting to a new normal Mick Ventola, Founder and Managing Director of Ventola Projects, believes it is a worrying period for leisure and entertainment businesses. He comments, “There is a lot of uncertainty around, so we’re working as hard as we can to help them innovate and differentiate, with things like the VAvR LED range and these new gaming solutions. “The number one concern, of course, is public safety and venues know they have to breed public confidence. But we’re pleased that, while we can help them adapt and reassure people on that front, we can also help move them forward. “People come to these places for the experience. Some of the things they were used to doing in venues won’t be possible for the foreseeable future, but our technology offers experiences many won’t have previously imagined or thought possible.”  Ventola Projects,



26/08/2020 14:53

uickwire New pluggable T-Connector for flexible cable Designed to dramatically speed up lighting installation time The new plug-in T-Connector consists of a plug and socket: The plug accepts flexible cable and the socket consists of two Quickwire solid core twin and earth, loop in loop out connections. It offers the same dramatic time-savings and ease of use as all of our Quickwire junction boxes.

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ENCOURAGING SIGNS FOR HEAT PUMP DEPLOYMENT Graham Wright, Chairman of the Heat Pump Association, discusses the contribution of heat pump technology in the UK’s carbon reduction commitments.


ith everything that has happened since the outbreak of COVID-19, 2019 seems an awfully long time ago. A quick reminder then, that the UK committed to the target of meeting net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Although this target was welcomed by the HPA, we also made clear that it would not be achievable without explicit policy and well communicated pathways to low-carbon heating technology such as heat pumps. Our subsequent ‘Roadmap’ document identified three key pillars that will help establish wide-scale deployment of heat pumps in the UK: 1.  Putting the consumer at the heart of change 2.  Upskilling the installer base to create a cohort of highly skilled low-carbon heat installers 3.  Working with government to ensure a supportive policy mix With regard to points one and three, in order to put the consumer at the heart of change, both industry and government need to make the consumer aware that they will be benefiting from adopting greener technology.

Solid plans The Chancellor’s Budget set out solid plans to fund the replacement of fossil fuel heating and invest in low carbon heating. The Budget statement confirmed the following funding commitments for Low Carbon Heat: •  To introduce a levy on gas suppliers to support green gas injection to the grid. This will accelerate the decarbonisation of the UK’s gas supply by increasing the proportion of biomethane in the grid. This is expected to be implemented in autumn 2021.

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ready to meet the upskilling challenge by providing the delivery of training through the development of suitable qualification schemes and administration of this. However, it is crucial that there is enough interest from people wanting to undergo this training. This is reliant on ongoing commitment from the government to emphasise that low carbon heat is the ‘direction of travel’ and fossil fuel heating will be phased out sooner rather than later.

•  £100 million of exchequer funding in total for 2022/23 and 2023/24 for grant-funding for households and small non-domestic buildings, to install heat pumps, or biomass in limited circumstances, to replace fossil fuel heating. •  £270m for a Green Heat Network Fund to run from 2022 to 2025, to follow on from the Heat Network Investment Project. This new targeted fund will ensure that heat networks adopt the most cost-effective low-carbon heat sources and will avoid locking in gas generation in the sector.

Summer Statement

Ahead of these schemes being established, the Budget announcement also confirmed that the government will: •  Extend the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (DRHI) for a year in 2021/22, maintaining support for heat pumps, biomass and solar thermal; and •  Introduce a third allocation of Tariff Guarantees under the Non-domestic RHI (NDRHI). These will be available for all technologies that have been eligible for the previous two allocations.

Grants scheme In April, we saw evidence that some of the key messages in the HPA Roadmap document were resonating with the right people, as the government published its consultation on Future Support for Low Carbon Heat, which includes the HPA’s proposal to make grants of £4,000 available for consumers wishing to replace fossil fuel boilers with heat pumps. Dialogue will continue during and after the consultation period, but it is an important step in delivering a critical market transformation.

“We will only be able to deliver on the Government’s policies with a large and highly-skilled installer base, and this is where the heat pump industry has a crucial role to play.”

Upskilling the installer base Returning to point two from earlier, we will only be able to deliver on the Government’s policies with a large and highly-skilled installer base, and this is where the heat pump industry has a crucial role to play. Installers will be responsible for increasing awareness among their customer base, and there needs to be a concerted effort to introduce thousands more fully trained and knowledgeable installers in order to push take-up on to the next level, beyond off-grid properties and new builds and into the mainstream. Additional training and development programmes need to be put in place if the industry is to put itself in a position to deal with a significant increase in demand. The heat pump industry is

Some good news followed in July with the Chancellor’s Summer Economic Update, which set out measures to support the economy as the UK seeks to recover from the impact of COVID-19. However, some important details require some clarification if we are to continue reducing our greenhouse emissions. The Summer Statement included a £2 billion Green Homes Grant, which will be introduced to help homeowners and landlords make their homes more efficient. Under the Green Homes Grant, they will be able to apply for vouchers which can go towards the costs of energy-efficiency measures within their homes through the installation of low-carbon heating, and the government has confirmed that both that both air source and ground source heat pumps will be included within this, with households able to claim vouchers of up to £5,000 to install one or more of the technologies available. The government also announced a 14-month extension to the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) tariff scheme for all nondomestic applicants who applied for the RHI before June 29. This will help to relieve the impact of COVID-19 on building projects and allow them to be completed in time. In addition to the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, a Clean Growth Strategy sets out the government’s ambition to halve greenhouse gas emissions from the public sector by 2032. To help achieve this and support economic recovery, the government will invest £1 billion over the next year in a Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme that will offer grants to public sector bodies to fund both energy efficiency and low carbon heat upgrades. This is a significant amount of funding, and with local authorities and other public bodies engaged in a race to declare a climate emergency in recent years, I would expect strong interest in funding that could be used to achieve these ambitions.  Heat Pump Association,



26/08/2020 14:53



With buildings operating with reduced opening hours due to lockdown, running costs can also be lowered – but only if the right technology is in place

BUILDINGS AFTER LOCKDOWN: MAKING HOT WATER SMARTER Roy Marsden, Product Manager for Heatrae Sadia, explains how new ways of working should see a rise in smart technology to ensure buildings intelligently manage hot water provision.


One of the key benefits of reducing building opening hours is that running costs can be reduced, but only if the right technology is in place to cater for new working patterns. This is where smart thermostat controls can help to minimise the whole-life cost of a building’s hot water system.

Hot water cylinders with smart thermostat controls are capable of recognising and self-managing through peaks and troughs in demand. This level of self-automated control helps to maximise energy savings, as the system ‘learns’ typical usage patterns within the first two weeks of being installed. The Heatrae Sadia Multipoint Eco, which has this technology, has been found to reduce fuel consumption by up to 19%. It also has a vacation mode, to ensure water isn’t heated unnecessarily and that output is carefully controlled to match demand. Through investment into this smart technology, buildings can benefit from a system that is always learning, and therefore can change based on sporadic ways of working. If a conventional system is kept that does not utilise this technology, the building is at risk of energy wastage and an overreliance on manual intervention, which isn’t always practical. However, it is still important that any controls are still intuitive enough to operate smoothly when required. Water heaters, such as the Multipoint Eco, now come with stylish and simple displays that enable easy programming. This reduces the amount of interaction time required, and further contributes to a cheaper total cost of ownership.

The advancements

Legionella prevention

Hot water cylinder thermostats have come a long way in terms of technology, and the difference between a conventional thermostat and a smart one is vast. While a conventional hot water thermostat’s job is to turn the heater on and off at a prescribed time, in addition to keeping the water temperature at a set level, a smart thermostat can do so much more.

For buildings taking advantage of smart thermostat technology, there could be some worry that more irregular heating patterns could lead to a risk of Legionnaires’ disease. This is because the bacteria multiply where temperatures are between 20-45°C. The bacteria remain dormant below 20°C and do not survive

s buildings gradually re-open after the coronavirus lockdown, more employers are looking at new ways of utilising their office spaces. The main difference between now and pre-COVID times is that building opening hours are being reduced to accommodate for more remote working, and this commitment is likely to last. Facebook, for example, has predicted that remote working will increase over the next five to ten years and many more companies are following suit. For electrical contractors tasked with upgrading systems to meet the requirements of new ways of working, there is an opportunity to specify product options that provide benefits when it comes to reducing building running costs.

Reducing running costs

HVAC – Heatrae Sadia.indd 45



above 60°C. However, this shouldn’t be the case unless a system has not been in use for some time. Whenever a system is not used for an extended period, the water outlets should be flushed frequently. Flushing hot water for several minutes through all points of use – all showers and taps, for instance – helps to replace the stagnant water with fresh water in the line to remove contaminants. A competent person should routinely check, inspect and clean the system in accordance with the risk assessment. For added assurance, products such as the Multipoint Eco come equipped with legionella prevention. Heatrae Sadia’s Legionella Control System guards users against harmful bacteria and is ideal for high-risk legionella installs, such as buildings in the leisure industry or offices with showering facilities. The Heatrae Sadia Multipoint Eco has been found to reduce fuel consumption by up to 19%, and it also has a useful ‘vacation mode’

Being ready Electrical contractors should be ready to face the challenge of providing top class electrical water-heating solutions, whilst simultaneously minimising running costs in a changing environment which is seeing a rise in irregular working hours. With the right smart thermostat technology incorporated into modern unvented waterheating systems, the solution to the ‘new normal’ is easily achieved. For more information on Heatrae Sadia’s Multipoint Eco range of unvented water heaters, visit products/cylinders-and-hot-water/ electric-unvented-storage/multipoint/ multipoint-eco.  Heatrae Sadia,

September 2020 | 45

26/08/2020 14:54



The CMX-Multi MEV in-ceiling void boasts strong performance and straightforward installation

A BREATH OF FRESH AIR FOR VENTILATION MEASURES Paul Williams, Product Manager at Domus Ventilation, analyses the changes to Building Regulations, Part F Ventilation, and explains why they are comparable to a ‘carrot and stick approach’.


he current Building Regulations Part F, which covers ventilation, have been in place since 2010, but over the years key issues have been identified and concerns voiced over the failure of homes to comply. Furthermore, new guidance from Public Health England on selected VOCs indoors and World Health Organisation (WHO) recommendations for indoor pollutant levels have meant Part F, as it stands, is out of date. ‘The Future Homes Standard: changes to Part L and Part F of the Building Regulations for new dwellings’ consultation, which closed in February of this year, is the first stage of a two-part consultation about proposed changes to the Building Regulations. The consultation sets out the government’s plans for the Future Homes Standard, which will be introduced by 2025, and focuses on increasing the energy efficiency requirements for new homes.

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This is one of the measures being taken to reduce all greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050, which has been set in law. The expectation is that an average home will have 75-80% less carbon emissions than one built to current energy efficiency requirements, so it’s a big leap and will require big changes.

Increased ventilation Part L (Conservation of fuel and power) and Part F of Building Regulations are very closely linked. If we are to achieve the type of low energy buildings laid out in the Future Homes Standard, new homes will need to become even more airtight than they are now to reduce energy wastage. Without sufficient ventilation though, these homes can become overheated and the air uncomfortable and unhealthy to breath. Consequently, Part F will also need to change to ensure the right level of ventilation is supplied to ensure good indoor air quality and user comfort. And that change means increasing the level of ventilation.

Mechanical ventilation, in the form of intermittent extract, continuous extract (MEV systems) or supply and extract (MVHR systems), are recognised as the most proficient means of ventilating a modern property. The revised Building Regulations are expected to increase the minimum airflow through these systems to each bedroom by 6 l/s. This has been introduced in concern over insufficient ventilation in bedrooms overnight if doors are kept shut. The other expected change here is an increase in the background ventilation from 2,500mm2 to 5,000mm2 in extract-only systems. Natural ventilation systems, i.e. background ventilation, will remain an option under the new regulations, but only for less airtight homes with a design air permeability of ≥ 5. This is disappointing, as it’s not an energy efficient way of ventilating a home – as natural heat will be lost to the outside whilst there is no guarantee of moisture or pollutants migrating outside.



28/08/2020 11:50



If housebuilders aren’t put off by this and are still considering relying on natural ventilation, then hopefully they may be put off by the likely requirement for much larger grilles which are far from aesthetically pleasing. That’s because the revised regulations require the size of the background ventilation grille to be determined on a room by room basis, rather than based on the whole property. One expected change in the new regulations that has surprised a number of people is the removal of Positive Input Ventilation (PIV) as an alternative approach. Whilst MEV and MVHR remain the better option, PIV can provide a good solution in new build applications where ducted systems are difficult to incorporate into the build. However, Approved Document F 2020 does make allowance for other systems, such as PIV, ‘provided it can be demonstrated to the building control body that they meet Requirement F1(1)’; a BBA Certificate supplied by the manufacturer will suffice here.

Simplification of the Regulations A number of studies, including the government’s Ventilation and indoor air quality in new homes paper, have shown a large proportion of homes simply do not comply with the current Building Regulations requirements and poor indoor air quality has been observed in several sample homes tested. So, Building Regulations are either being flouted or are not being understood and implemented. This is something we identified a number of years ago and launched a Domestic Ventilation Installer training course in partnership with BPEC, which is a recognised qualification for relevant Competent Person Schemes.

Clearly, if Building Regulations are being deliberately ignored then action needs to be taken to address this through Building Control. However, feedback from industry and building inspectors has indicated that what’s more likely is confusion and a lack of understanding of the regulations leading to failure to comply.

“By 2050, the expectation is that an average home will have 75-80% less carbon emissions than one built to current energy efficiency requirements.”

They have expressed a need for simplified guidance, which would assist designers and help with inspections and sign off. The result is a simplification of ventilation standards in relation to a property’s air permeability through the recommended use of continuous Mechanical Extract Ventilation (MEV) and continuous supply and extract ventilation (e.g. Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery – MVHR) for properties with any level of air tightness. Furthermore, whole house ventilation design calculations will now only require the number of bedrooms and floor area to be taken into consideration, removing the need to predict occupancy rates, which removes guess work. For some, the changes to Parts L and F of the Building Regulations don’t go far enough in reducing carbon emissions and energy consumption. For now though, these changes are heading your way and, when it comes to ventilation, it’s a carrot and stick approach: it’s easier to understand and implement, as the industry has asked – but ventilation rates are increasing and you must supply a copy of the checklist and commissioning sheet to the building owner to prove you’ve done what is required of you.

An MVHR unit being fitted in a new build

Domus Ventilation,

Supply and extract (MVHR systems) are recognised as the most proficient means of ventilating a modern property

HVAC – Domus.indd 47



Domus Ventilation is a manufacturer of market-leading ventilation systems that save energy and improve indoor air quality.

September 2020 | 47

28/08/2020 11:50



‘ZERO CARBON’ CONCERNS HEAT UP Ellen Huelin, Head of Sustainability at Whitecode Design Associates, unpicks the ‘Future support for low carbon heat’ proposal.


he Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has released a document for public consultation which explains how support will be given to small-to-medium sized businesses that are moving to low carbon forms of heating. Although the ‘Future support for low carbon heat’ paper is welcomed by the industry, and represents an important episode in the UK’s net-zero carbon evolution, what do these measures mean for larger-scale businesses and developers who also require assistance on what will prove to be quite a radical shift for the industry?

Carbon heating prospects The ‘Future support for low carbon heat’ document brings to the fore several low carbon heating prospects. One of these methods is air source heat pumps, a low-carbon producer of heat which has been widely tried and tested across Europe and in more recent years in the UK. Heat pumps connect to the electric grid, which is gradually being decarbonised through increasing the share of low-carbon energy sources such as wind power and a reduction in the use of fossil fuel burning power stations. Any sceptics should take comfort in the fact heat pumps can perform, generating three to four units of heating for one unit of energy. This is something that can’t be said for electric panel heaters, which only produce a single unit. The consultation document identifies heat pumps as one of the most suitable alternatives to fossil fuels, and makes assessments as to how the industry can make this change to implementing this technology.

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What are the concerns?

“There are higher costs associated with the installation of heat pumps, so yet again being sustainable will cost the client.”

Achieving zero carbon is an industry-wide aim, which is connected to this collective responsibility to reduce the UK’s entire carbon emissions by 2050. The UK’s leading cities are making conscious efforts to move away from gas, in order to reduce emissions and improve air quality for the benefit of humans and the environment. Under the emerging London Plan, the GLA encourages the use of the new carbon emission factor for electricity under SAP10; this essentially means selecting air source heat pumps for these schemes is the most compliant option. However, the current infrastructure is not set up to cater for all new London schemes to use electricity for heating and hot water. Whilst the consultation document’s recommendations make a good start, there are some big questions and uncertainties as to how it will help everybody in the long-term and how feasible some of it is. Furthermore, there are higher costs associated with the installation of heat pumps when compared to traditional heating systems, so yet again being sustainable will cost the client. To cushion the impact of this additional financial cost, the low carbon heat consultation suggests support may be granted to SMEs. Whilst this is needed, it only pertains to systems up to 45kW capacity, which in theory will only really benefit individual dwellings. It can be applied in apartments with their own ASHP – however, this goes against policy requirements for site-wide networks. It is proposed to be a capital grant scheme rather than the tariff system used under the Renewable Heat Incentive.

What can be done? There has been concern in the industry on the requirement for a mass shift to using ASHP over gas fired heating and combined heat and power (CHP). For

instance, to make this shift in gear a reality, there needs to be preparation in terms of skills and product availability. We need to make sure there are enough air source heat pump engineers who can install and maintain these new systems. Due to the size of this change, large developers will require support to encourage the adoption of air source heat pumps. A potential solution would be in the form of a widespread grant forming part of an air source heat pump scheme. Depending on the development, companies can be given a level of support to cover the costs and transition from gas systems or CHP. A more universal support mechanism is even more important during the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though many sites are reopening, it is safe to say the industry has taken a bit of a hit, with some clients hesitant to proceed with investments they wouldn’t usually think twice about making. For this reason, there is still a great deal of anxiety, which doesn’t bode well if we want to make radical changes. To curb this, there needs to be support and more concrete guidance which is applicable to developers across the spectrum. Consequently, this type of financial backing will feed into the function of the wider construction ecosystem. At present, there simply isn’t enough information on the cost and installation of heat pumps, let alone where they will source high quantities. We are all united in our desire to ensure the UK reaches its net zero aims. Whilst the ‘Future support for low carbon heat’ document is an act of real change, better support across the board must be made available to all. The change to air source heat pumps represents a huge shift for the industry. Yet, we need to make sure there is the correct infrastructure to support it in order to make this method work.  Whitecode Design Associates,



26/08/2020 14:54


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courtesy of

WIN A £200 MULTISTORE VOUCHER Scolmore is staying one step ahead with new anti-viral testing. Find out more, along with details of how you can win the £200 voucher.


nfection control is one of the biggest challenges facing the healthcare sector. Anyone operating within and supplying to this sector, is required to work with products that meet the demands for hygiene and safety, and that includes electrical products. Light switches, dimmers and sockets have one of the highest touch rates in any environment, so are likely to hold a significant number of microbes on their surfaces. Whilst regular and rigorous cleaning of these settings is essential, the use of products with anti-viral and

antimicrobial properties will also have a part to play to help inhibit the spread of infection. With an increasing emphasis on building cleanliness, Scolmore has taken a further step to ensure that its wiring accessory products offer enhanced hygiene properties. The company’s popular Mode, Mode Part M and Polar plates have now been independently tested and have shown to have anti-viral properties against enveloped and non-enveloped viruses. After a contact period of four hours, all tested plates were shown to have a 99.9% kill off rate against enveloped viruses and a 92% kill off rate against non-enveloped viruses.

This new anti-viral testing is in addition to the anti-bacterial testing already carried out. Mode, Mode Part M and Polar are all manufactured using Urea Formaldehyde, which has similar inherent properties to antimicrobial additives that inhibit the growth of infectious diseases. When independently tested, all products achieved a 99.99% kill off rate across all four types of the strains of bacteria – MRSA, E-Coli, Salmonella and Klebsiella Pneumonia. Mode is a range of contemporary, white wiring accessories and is the company’s best-selling wiring accessories collection to date. Mode Part M is a range

For your chance to win a £200 multistore voucher from Scolmore, simply answer the following questions correctly: 1.  Which Scolmore ranges have recently undergone anti-viral testing? a)  Mode b)  Mode Part M c)  Polar d)  All three

2.  After testing, what kill off rate against enveloped viruses did Scolmore’s accessory plates achieve?

3.  Which strains of bacteria are Scolmore’s wiring accessories tested against?


Closing date All entries must be returned by September 30, 2020. The editor’s decision is final. For the full terms and conditions, visit competition-terms. The name of the winner will be published in the November issue of ECN.

a)  MRSA b)  E-Coli c)  Salmonella d)  All of the above

a)  99.9% b)  9.9% c)  92%

of visually contrasting wiring accessories, in anthracite grey, that comply with current Building Regulations Part M. Polar is a premium range of bright white electrical accessories, which was developed to meet the demand for a different accessory colour.

*Prize not exchangeable.

To enter, please complete the form below and fax to 01634 673173, or post to: ECN Competition, All Things Media Ltd, Suite 14, 6-8 Revenge Road, Lordswood, Kent, ME5 8UD. Alternatively, you can email your answers and contact details to:

The answers to September’s competition are:

Contact Preferences YES, I would like to receive the ECN newsletter YES, I would like to subscribe to ECN magazine


YES, I would like to share my data with Scolmore

Personal Details Name....................................................................................................................................... Company Name...................................................................................................................... Address...................................................................................................................................

2. . .........................................................................


................................................................................ Postcode................................................. Tel................................................................ Mobile ................................................................

3. . .........................................................................

Date.............................................................................. E-mail.....................................................................................................................................

To register to receive your copy of ECN each month, visit Competition.indd 30

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OVER 800


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CEF DEVELOPS ITS MULTI-CHANNEL APPROACH CEF has added a new trade app and interactive catalogue to its growing selection of digital tools for customers. ECN presents a full round-up of these latest innovations.


A brand new catalogue

EF, the UK’s leading electrical wholesaler, has recently launched a number of new digital tools, including the new CEF Trade App and an interactive version of its catalogue to make buying from CEF faster, easier and more convenient for customers. From digitising paperwork in stores to innovative new e-commerce solutions, the company’s digital offerings are part of a strategy to become the leading multichannel wholesaler and offer greater convenience for customers, irrespective of whether they are buying in-store or online.

The most recent additions – the new CEF Trade App and an interactive version of the company’s Trade Catalogue – have been designed to complement the company’s latest printed catalogue, which was launched on September 1. The CEF Trade Catalogue provides customers with a huge choice of essential electrical products at everyday value prices and features almost 30,000 products from exclusive in-house and leading brand suppliers. Produced three times per year, more than 800 new products have been added to the latest edition, including a new EV Charging section. Customers can now

find a range of EV charging stations and accessories in addition to the usual essential products, such as cable and cable management solutions, heating and ventilation, lighting, wiring accessories, site equipment and test instruments, as well as CEF’s lowest priced Trade Essentials range.

Ease and convenience for customers With the addition of the interactive version of the catalogue and the new CEF Trade App, CEF customers can access the electrical products they need with ease and speed from wherever they may be.





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“We wanted to make the process of ordering electrical products as easy and convenient as possible for our customers – wherever and however they are working and the way to do that is to better connect our customers offline and online experience,” explains Andrew Moseley, CEF’s Commercial Director. “We know that people browse our catalogue to select the products they need, and many do so whilst also searching our site on a mobile device. The new app and interactive catalogue remove the need to hunt down product codes and make it easy for customers to search and select the products they require.”

The CEF Trade Hub provides customers with quick and easy access to industry news, product knowledge and training

CEF offers customers a number of tools to make buying essential electrical products even more convenient:

A multi-channel approach The launch of the interactive catalogue and CEF Trade App are the latest developments in CEF’s journey to become the leading multi-channel wholesaler. In Q2 2019, CEF upgraded its website to include visible pricing, improved search functionality and guest checkout, allowing customers to find and purchase the products they need quickly and easily. In May of this year, the company launched the CEF Trade Hub to provide customers with quick and easy access to industry news, product knowledge and training. And in August, digital signature software was implemented across all stores, so that customers can sign for goods on their mobile device – removing the need for pen and paper. “We’ve witnessed a noticeable shift in customers placing orders online over recent months, and this trend shows no signs of slowing down as customers like the flexibility and convenience this can offer alongside traditional in-store purchases. “Part of this shift has of course been accelerated because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it was happening anyway. These latest developments demonstrate how we are utilising the latest technology to create an industry leading customer experience through our 390 stores and online via,” states Moseley. “Our approach is to give customers access to over 35,000 products through the platform that is most convenient and suits them best – which naturally changes from day to day based on the job they are working on and where it is.” The CEF Trade Catalogue is available now and can be picked up at any CEF store, or ordered online at The interactive version of the catalogue can be found at and the CEF Trade App can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play today.

“Produced three times per year, more than 800 new products have been added to the latest catalogue, including a new EV Charging section.”

CEF Trade Catalogue – Print version

Interactive catalogue

Issue 04 of the CEF Trade Catalogue is out now and features almost 30,000 essential electrical products – including over 800 new products and a new EV Charging section. From cable and cable management to heating and ventilation plus lighting, wiring accessories, site equipment and test instruments, the CEF catalogue has everything you need to get the job done. Pick up a copy in-store today or request a copy online at

For the first time, customers can access a shoppable, digital, interactive version of the printed catalogue for ease of use and on-the-go accessibility. Available to view as a PDF online, customers can easily flick through the pages to browse the products and click on a product code to buy or view more information about the product on The interactive version of the catalogue can be found at

CEF Online

CEF Trade Hub

CEF’s website – – is the most convenient way to purchase electrical products. With more than 35,000 products in stock from exclusive in-house and leading brands all available for next day delivery, customers can find everything they need to get the job done. Delivery options include click and collect, and free next day delivery on orders over £50 when placed before 8pm Monday to Friday. In addition, CEF account customers can manage their account online through the MyCEF portal.

The recently launched CEF Trade Hub provides customers with central access to industry news, product knowledge and training materials. Designed for the electrical installer, the CEF Trade Hub places a wealth of information at an electrician’s finger tips, including industry news, watch and learn videos, ‘how to’ guides, links to free webinars and business information. The site can be found at

CEF Trade App The new CEF Trade App has been developed to accompany the catalogue and is available free for both iOS and Android. The app allows customers to purchase products directly from the printed catalogue by simply scanning the product code with their smartphone camera, offering customers increased convenience and flexibility in accessing the company’s extensive range of over 35,000 electrical products. Ordering products using the app is as easy as one, two, three: 1) S can the catalogue page using your smartphone camera 2) S elect the products you need and add to basket 3) C heck out securely The CEF Trade App can be downloaded from the App store or Google Play.

Digital signatures CEF’s new digital signature solution gives account customers the power to sign for goods in-store using their mobile device – removing the need for pen and paper. When collecting goods in-store, the customer is sent an email with a unique link to add their electronic signature to the goods receipt document. No registration is needed and customers can sign online from any device. A copy of the signed document is then emailed straight to the customer for their records – cutting down on paper waste, saving time and helping with social distancing. Ask in-store for more details.








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It’s never been easier to get the electrical products you need when you need them, where you want them NATIONWIDE

OVER 35,000








NEW TRADE APP As easy as...




Download the app now from the App Store or Google Play



26/08/2020 12:57




Scolmore Group was able to continue to supply its full range of products to the professional electrical market through the wholesale channel

Marie Parry, Group Marketing Director of Scolmore Group, looks at the steps the company has taken through the coronavirus crisis and explains how it is operating under a ‘new normal’.


Behind-the-scenes planning

hese are, without doubt, the most challenging times that our industry, the country and the world has faced in the last century. It is now more than 150 days since the country was placed into lockdown and our way of working and living was changed overnight beyond recognition. As we start to emerge from the tight restrictions of lockdown, we are learning to embrace a new way of working that puts the safety of our employees, customers and suppliers at the forefront of everything we do.

“When it became apparent in March that the UK was heading for an enforced lockdown, we needed to urgently prepare ourselves for the challenges that were coming.”

Urgent preparations When we look back to early February, we were still talking about coronavirus as something that was happening in China. When it became apparent in March that the UK was heading for an enforced lockdown, we needed to urgently prepare ourselves for the challenges that were coming. With a company the size of the Scolmore Group – which has in excess of 250 employees working across a number of sites in the UK (including Tamworth and Redditch in the Midlands, as well as Glasgow) – there was a considerable amount of planning and organisation required to work out how best we could keep the company operating in this new environment. By the time total lockdown was announced on Monday 23 March, the entire workforce was either working from home or placed on furlough. A lot of work had already been undertaken to ensure all the right equipment, systems and procedures were in place to allow members of the various teams to work safely and securely from their new home environments.

Like many others, we were faced with a sudden and dramatic fall in orders, as construction work was put on hold and wholesale counters decided to close in line with government guidelines. As we continued to make plans behind the scenes for how best to keep the business going during the early days, we focused a lot of attention on communicating with our wholesale customers, contractors and installers via direct marketing as well via the various digital platforms. We wanted to let them know that we remained open for business and also wanted to provide them with some valuable resources that they could use during the time when they were unable to work. Working with a vastly scaled back operation, and with the safety of our staff a priority, we were able to continue to supply our full range of products to the professional electrical market through the wholesale channel. We have always had the ability to hold vast stock levels which means that we were able to continue to fulfil orders from across the group, with our full range of wiring accessories from Scolmore, lighting and lighting control products from Ovia, security and fire protection products from ESP and cable accessory products from Unicrimp all currently available.

Making use of the extra time We appreciate that there are many in the industry who have been unable to work, but we believe that this can be seen as an opportunity to spend time we may not normally have, to catch up on some of the latest industry news and developments, get up to speed with recent new product

developments and legislation, and maybe even to add to our skillset. Across the Scolmore Group of companies, there is a wealth of resources that contractors and wholesalers can access. Each group company website hosts a vast range of products, including range catalogues as well as technical specification brochures. Product videos that make it easy to understand the workings of individual products can be accessed on YouTube. There are case studies demonstrating how products from the group have been specified and installed to provide solutions for specific projects and these include the recent use of our Mode antimicrobial wiring accessories at a newly expanded emergency care unit. The ‘in the press’ sections provide some in-depth articles covering a range of topics from smart solutions, to fire-rated downlights safety. Every aspect of the working environment across the Scolmore Group has been affected, as we have had to implement all the necessary measures to ensure that social distancing and hygiene standards are met across all departments and at all points of interaction with suppliers and customers. As restrictions continue to be lifted and with building projects being resumed, we have been seeing a steady increase in orders coming through. However, with local lockdowns still being considered and the winter months threating a potential second wave of COVID-19, we are only too aware that we all remain in a precarious situation and we will be taking the progress we are making one day at a time.  Scolmore Group,




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TOOLSTATION CUSTOMERS ADDRESS COVID CONCERNS Despite the easing of lockdown restrictions, only 50% of all trade professionals are working at the same or higher levels as before the lockdown – and according to a survey from Toolstation, other concerns linger.


Toolstation’s barometer asks customers about their current circumstances and opinions on a range of topics including workloads, the economy and the impact of coronavirus. The survey was first conducted in early May, one month into the national lockdown, and ran again at the beginning of July, following the easing of some restrictions announced on June 23, which aimed to help businesses get back on their feet and people back in their jobs.

onducted over the weekend of August 2123, the latest economic barometer survey of 4,500 Toolstation customers – split by trade professionals and DIYers – reveals that COVID-19 continues to bite hard on a sector dominated by self-employed individuals and small businesses.

These latest survey results can therefore be compared to previous, and changes in circumstances or trends identified.

Planned work is ‘below normal levels’ Chief amongst the concerns reported by trade professionals is the fact that half of them are still working less than they were





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before the pandemic struck, with planned work also below normal levels for the season for almost a third of respondents. As a result, there is anxiety around personal household finances and the ability to pay mortgages and bills, with 22% saying their finances will be ‘massively affected’ by the coronavirus situation. More optimistic is the fact that the numbers of those not working at all, due to either being on a furlough or job retention scheme, or not working and not on furlough, has thankfully decreased as business has started up again and customers regain confidence in spending on their properties. From a peak of 18% furloughed in May, the figure is now 4%, whilst the 27% that reported not working and not furloughed in May has reduced to 10% – a figure that we’d all like to see become zero as soon as possible. However, almost half of all trade (43%) agree that the UK is heading for a massive recession, with 58% and 46% ranking themselves as “terrified” about the prospects for the UK economy and the job market respectively.

Hunting down supplies and materials Availability of supplies is gradually improving, although still high considering suppliers like Toolstation has remained open throughout the pandemic with clear safety measures implemented and increased services around Click & Collect, home delivery and delivery direct from suppliers. Over half of all trade (58%) are finding availability of materials can be problematic – a reduction from the 64% figure revealed in the July barometer.


Just over half of all professionals (51%) reported cashflow as a big concern at this time, which, again, is a slight reduction from the 56% reported in July; but still higher than the 49% reported in May. Serious concerns about the risk of coronavirus infection at work have increased as lockdown restrictions have been lifted and some normality has returned, with 48% reporting this compared to 42% in May and 44% in July.

“Availability of supplies is gradually improving, although still high considering suppliers like Toolstation remained open throughout the pandemic.”

A new mental health initiative Away from work, and in expressing their current main challenges, concerns or worries, 44% stated the ‘mental wellbeing of friends and/or family members’ – a percentage that has remained consistent over the course of the barometer surveys, and an issue that Toolstation has responded to with its ‘Head First’ campaign developed in partnership with Time to Change to provide information and advice to those experiencing mental health difficulties themselves or with concerns about others. For further information on this initiative, visit www. On a more positive note, concerns about relationships with family members, whilst still high in being reported by just under a third of all trade professionals, has reduced significantly from a massive 50% that reported this in July when the impact of lockdown on all aspects of life was at a peak. For electricians specifically, the overall picture is somewhat brighter than amongst all trade professionals in general. For example, 52% of electricians rated their biggest current challenge being impact on their work/business, compared to 63% of all trades. Whilst concerns about accessibility/availability of tools and materials was also significantly lower at 33% compared to 43%, as well as the ability to pay the mortgage/rent/bills at 28% versus 35%. In fact, across all question categories, electricians reported less concern about their finances and work life compared to all trades including plumbing, joinery, building, etc. – perhaps a reflection of 50% of them reporting an increase in work over the four weeks preceding the August barometer survey, and only 12% reporting a decrease compared to 44% and 15% respectively amongst all trades. All types of electrical work have suffered though, particularly domestic and commercial project work, with just over half reporting that they’re doing either less or none at all at the time of the survey.

Toolstation responds to market conditions Commenting on the findings of the customer economic barometer survey, James Mackenzie, Managing Director of Toolstation, comments, “Whilst we’ve inevitably seen some improvements in the levels of work available to the trade over the course of our barometer survey, as lockdown restrictions have eased and the economy has opened up, concerns naturally remain for many of our customers. Thankfully, the majority are back working and a significant number are now at least as busy, if not even more so than we’d found previously. “As a business, we are doing everything we can to continue to support trade professionals in the areas we can influence such as pricing, stock availability and accessibility – including the opening of 60 new branches this year, together with significant investments in our range, operations, logistics and people following a highly positive sales performance in Q2. We will continue to invest in our product and service offer to customers, despite the challenging market conditions, and are wholly confident that the trade sector will soon be thriving again.”

Toolstation has remained open throughout the pandemic with clear safety measures and increased services around Click & Collect








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Red Arrow boasts a 100,000 square foot warehouse at its base in South Yorkshire

RED ARROW READY FOR THE FUTURE Red Arrow Electrical Distribution is preparing for a more energy-efficient future with new product developments, a focus on Part L and 18th Edition requirements, and a range of innovative products. ECN investigates.


he increasing consumer awareness of energy efficiency, lower carbon footprints and reduced energy bills is driving demand for better products and further innovation. And while

some consumers and businesses may feel they are being forced to buy energy-saving products – either through legislation or increasing energy tariffs – early adopters will reap the financial savings in the long-term. Here, we explore how Red Arrow is leading the way and preparing for a more energy efficient future.

Legislations and requirements Changes in legislation continues to focus on energy efficiency and carbon emissions, with the 18th Edition ushering in a greener era. And as the first set of wiring regulations to focus on energy efficiency, appendix 17 offers expert guidance on the lessening environmental impact of electrical installations.





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This is through measures such as replacing traditional standard filament, halogen and fluorescent lights with super-efficient LEDS. The UK Government is also committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, by 100% below 1990 levels, before 2050. And, on top of this, Part L of the Building Regulations for Domestic Dwellings plans to increase the energy efficiency requirements for new homes in 2020. With lighting playing a key part, this regulation sets the standard for the energy performance and carbon emissions of new and existing buildings. But what does this mean for contractors, and how can the electrical industry play a fundamental part in reducing energy consumption?

“Through its new product development process, Red Arrow is working to release new products that are, on average, 20% more efficient than their predecessors.”

One eye on the future With the amount of options available on the market today, it can be difficult to know where to start for your next lighting project. However, through its new product development process, Red Arrow is working to release new products that are, on average, 20% more efficient than their predecessors. Plus, many of the company’s products already have efficacies of 120-130lm/W, which Red Arrow is setting as the general benchmark. Furthermore, Red Arrow’s team can integrally or externally fit energy-saving innovations, such as microwave sensors, PIR sensors, dimming options and wattage selection into all new items. And with lighting accounting for 15% of electricity bills in the UK, there’s never been a better time to introduce your customers to these energy savers:

Developments in floodlight technology will soon see Red Arrow offering a version with a 30,000 hour lifetime

Rhombus Pro

Floodlights Ideal for warehouses, garages, school halls, gardens and playgrounds, Red Arrow’s floodlights are typically greater than 100lm/W. But new introductions will increase this to 130lm/W:

High bays, suitable for factory and warehouse lighting, can offer a lifetime of up to 50,000 hours

•  30,000 hours lifetime •  Driverless technology •  Available in 10-300W For more information on these products and to order them in time for your next project, head to Red Arrow’s website.  Red Arrow Electrical Distribution,

This high efficiency, back lit recessed lay-in modular luminaire is designed to fit into exposed T-grid ceilings. It offers: •  25,000 hours lifetime •  125lm/W •  A flicker-free driver •  A dimmable driver available

Commando high-bays The improved, high performance LED dimmable high-bay range is suitable for factory and warehouse lighting, and features: •  30lm/W •  50,000 hours lifetime •  A 1-10V dimmable driver included

About the company Red Arrow Electrical Distribution is a streamlined, quality-focussed manufacturer and distributor of lighting and electrical products to the wholesale industry. It is committed to providing an excellent sales and customer service experience, whilst providing a wide range of quality products at competitive prices. The company builds strong, long-term relationships with suppliers ensuring quality and continuity of product supply and ongoing product development. Red Arrow’s 100,000 square foot warehouse allows its customers to minimise their stock holding and maximise their profitability.







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U-LITE – THE SLIMLINE LINEAR LED LUMINAIRE FROM OVIA The U-Lite range of slimline linear LED luminaires from Scolmore Group company, Ovia, has been designed and developed as the ideal retrofit replacement for single and twin-lamp fluorescent fittings. With 24 variants in the U-Lite range, Ovia is offering a product that is suitable for every market and for numerous applications; for example warehouses, manufacturing facilities and car parks. They can be installed into walls and ceilings, or suspended. They come in standard, microwave sensor and emergency models, and in three different lengths – 1200mm, 1500mm and 1800mm. Each length is available in a single fluorescent lamp equivalent and a twin lamp equivalent output. Wattage ratings range from 21W to 72W Cool White (4000K) and they offer an LED lifetime of 50,000 hours (L70). Made from non-corrosive polycarbonate, each unit has an IP rating of IP65 and a tough impact protection rating of IK08 and they are all supplied with a five-year warranty. For further information, visit

LEWDEN OFFERS BESPOKE POWER DISTRIBUTION SOLUTIONS Lewden has expertise in providing bespoke power distribution solutions, customised to suit customers’ requirements with full concept and product design, assembled by the company’s experienced engineering team with exclusive consultation provided throughout the process. With short turnaround times, starting from concept to delivery, Lewden provides pre-finished solutions to reduce installation time on-site. View the company’s scope along with some of its previous bespoke power distribution solutions by visiting For further information, visit


ESP LAUNCHES FREE DESIGN SERVICE FOR CCTV AND FIRE SYSTEMS Already providing contractors with free security and fire training programmes, ESP is further enhancing its commitment to helping the sector with a newly launched, dedicated design service which will allow contractors access to a free of charge design facility that will cover CCTV systems and fire systems. Available to any size of business, the aim is to provide expertise in choosing the right products and solutions to create a scheme that meets all the requirements and objectives of the project in question, and that is compliant with all the relevant regulations and standards. From an initial enquiry to discuss the requirements, the next stage will be one of information and measurements gathering. For larger and more complex design schemes, a visit to site will be carried out for a detailed survey. With all the relevant information gathered, a suitable design proposal for a CCTV system or fire system will be created and supplied to the client along with a quotation. For further information, visit

Makita has expanded its XGT 40V Max range of cordless power tools with the launch of four new brushless angle grinders – engineered to deliver the power needed for high-demand applications, with the added flexibility and improved safety of cordless. Also added to the range is the CF001GZ 40V Max ‘Swing Fan’, ideal for keeping cool and air circulating in all seasons. Makita has added four new brushless angle grinders (GA022GZ, GA023GZ, GA028GZ and GA029Z) to its XGT 40V Max line up. Launched in June, XGT 40V Max is the highest power cordless solution from Makita – offering the high output, durability and fast charge times needed for high-demand applications. To maximise on-site productivity, the GA022GZ, GA023GZ, GA028GZ and GA029Z have been designed to withstand frequent heavy-duty cutting and grinding. Each model delivers a no load speed of 3,000-8,500rpm and features a variable speed dial, enabling operators to easily control and adjust the speed of the machine, depending on the application. For more information, visit

HAVE A REQUIREMENT FOR A TRANSFORMER? Transpower specialises in manufacturing and supplying standard and bespoke transformers to the UK market from its production facility in Manchester. The company supplies to the electrical wholesale network as well as the OEM market for various industries. Transpower takes pride in working closely with its clients to establish their exact requirements and to provide them with the best, most cost-effective solution available on the market. This can be for a one-off transformer or a repeat order. The company can manufacture standard or bespoke transformers in its range of Sitemasters from 5kVA up to 20kVA, industrial transformers, portable tool transformers, panel transformers both single and three-phase from 6VA to 100kVA. They are all available in a range of sizes and configurations, which can be designed and built to your specifications. The range of transformers are available for different applications, include water treatment plants, general construction sites, off-shore wind farms, maintenance and general, and industrial and workshop applications.

NEW PODIS POWER BUS SYSTEM FROM WIELAND The new podis power bus system from Wieland Electric helps to implement the distribution of power quickly and easily. Ideal for use in airports for baggage conveyor systems, office buildings and shopping centres for the routing of power, the podis power bus system has found popularity more recently for the installation of vehicle charging stations for electric cars in public parking garages. The podis decentralised energy distribution system allows a large number of charging stations to be connected with just one supply cable. For vehicle charging, the feed to the power bus can be placed anywhere, including the centre which enables an ideal balance of the load on the power bus, meaning that the number of charging stations on a section of flat cable can be increased without overloading the cable. The system saves installation time, requires less cable, and considerably reduces the size of the distribution cabinet. For further information, visit

For further information, visit

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SCOLMORE COMBINES FAN ISOLATOR AND FUSE ON ONE PLATE Another installer-inspired new product has been added to Scolmore’s wiring accessories range – a pre-manufactured plate which combines a three-pole fan isolator module alongside a 3A fuse. Installers have already let Scolmore know how much they love the existing fan isolation switch and fused connection unit which they make up on the MiniGrid plate. This latest development takes it one step further by combining both modules on a ready-made plate, and the benefits are numerous. By providing the fan isolator and fuse on one plate, contractors will save valuable installation time with no need to assemble the modular combination. There is also the benefit to the installer, as well as the wholesaler, of having just one product code for ordering and stocking purposes. The new combined 10A fan isolator with 3A fuse plate has been added to the Mode range of contemporary, white antimicrobial wiring accessories. The new combination plates are supplied with a 20-year warranty.

HULTAFORS TOOLS’ NEW RANGE OF SCREWDRIVERS Hultafors Tools has launched a new range of Screwdrivers for professional craftsmen and women. With VDE Screwdrivers specially designed for electricians – including tested and certified SL/PZ and Voltage Tester models – there’s over 80 other Slotted, Philips, POZIDRIV, TORX Stubby Screwdrivers, plus Hex Drivers and Bit Holders that can be bought individually or in sets – or by size - to suit the jobs you have in hand. Researched and developed with craftspeople for professional use, they all have a superb ergonomic design for optimal comfort. The long rubber-coated handles ensure grip for precision and maximal transmission of power. The handle is made from durable PPC plastic with a coating of age-resistant and easy-to-grip rubber. The permanent marking of type and size on the top, as well as the handle’s colour, make it easy for the user to select the right screwdriver. Blades are manufactured from high-quality hardened steel for long life. For further information, visit

For further information, visit

NEW MERIDIAN LED SLIM CURVED FLOODLIGHTS The CED Electrical Group is proud to announce the latest addition to its Meridian LED Lighting range – new LED Slim Curved Floodlights. Available in four power levels – 10W, 20W, 30W and 50W – these new style floodlights have a slim curved black diecast body and come fitted with angled brackets for ease of positioning, plus built-in integrated junction boxes for easy wiring. Operationally, there are two separate ranges – one IP65 Switch Start version and one an IP56 Manual Override PIR option. With a 6500K colour rendition, both versions deliver from 800 lumens for the 10W up to 4,000 lumens for the top of the range 50W size. Fitted with SMD type LEDs, these new Meridian LED Floodlights have an average 30,000-hour operating life. Whilst quality is assured with all relevant BS standards met, products CE marked and the range backed with a two-year guarantee, it is available at very competitive prices. For further information, visit

MAKITA EXPANDS LXT RANGE WITH TWO NEW BAND SAWS Makita has expanded its range of LXT cordless tools with the launch of the DPB183Z and DPB184Z Brushless Portable Band Saws. The DPB183Z and DPB184Z offer the high-power and flexibility needed to tackle a wide range of metal-cutting tasks and are ideal for professional tradespeople working across sectors such as electrical, plumbing and metal fabrication. The compact and lightweight design of the DPB183Z and DPB184Z (the DPB183Z weighs just 3.3kg and the DPB184Z weighs 3.6kg) makes them easy to manoeuvre around tight working spaces. Angled specifically for comfort, the DPB183Z and DPB184Z’s ergonomic handle design has been engineered to ensure ease of use in both horizontal and vertical operation, making these machines incredibly versatile. For stable and secure cutting, both machines include durable, lightweight aluminium housings, with an optional grip handle for even greater control. The DPB183Z and DPB184Z benefit from Makita’s variable speed control, which allows operators to select the ideal cutting speed for each application.


SNICKERS’ STRETCH TROUSERS OFFER MAXIMUM MOBILITY New slim-fit stretch trousers from Snickers Workwear deliver extreme working comfort – all day, every day. Hi-tech fabrics and body-mapping designs in the new multi-purpose ALLROUNDWork 4-Way Stretch Trousers from Snickers Workwear ensure maximum working mobility wherever you are on site. The 4-way stretch fabrics integrated into these work trousers deliver maximum freedom of movement for all kinds of work all year ‘round, as well as improved ventilation and overall comfort. With great fit and superb value for money, they have a slimmer tailored fit for better allaround looks and protection against snagging. Plus, the reinforced stretch Cordura in the certified KneeGuard System provides greater flexibility, comfort and durability. The trousers are specially designed to take the new D30 ERGO Craftsman Kneepad. Check out all the Stretch Garments from Snickers Workwear – the optimal choice for craftsmen and women who need to get every job done comfortably and efficiently on site. For further information, visit

KNIGHTSBRIDGE BRINGS POWER AND LIGHT TO THE GARDEN With lockdown giving homeowners a greater appreciation of their gardens, there’s a fantastic opportunity to take lighting and power outdoors thanks to the comprehensive IP-rated Weatherproof and Outdoor ranges from Knightsbridge – one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of wiring devices, accessories and lighting. The Weatherproof collection includes sockets, fused spurs, switches and switch boxes (including remote-controlled items), along with ancillaries such as enclosures and connectors. For lighting, there’s a huge selection, from floodlights for domestic and commercial applications and exterior decorative fittings through to spike and groundlights for gardens and decking. With safety paramount, all wiring devices and ancillaries are rated to a minimum of IP66. This means they are completely secure against ingress of dust and any possibility of accidental contact, and they are also protected against high pressure jets of water. Connectors are rated to IP68, making them safely submersible to beyond a 1m depth, so are ideal for water features and undersoil cable extensions. For further information, visit

For further information, visit

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Manufacturer of game-changing housebuilder products, BeadMaster, has extended its offering with two new products – Circle 62 and Circle 86. BeadMaster’s cover plates deliver a perfect finish around sockets, switches, downlights and sprinklers as it is stapled to the plasterboard, enabling plasterers to skim over holes quickly and easily. The centre is then removed with a hooked blade, revealing smooth, reinforced edges. Part of the innovative new range, the Circle 62 offers a practical solution for bespoke projects that require smaller downlight and sprinkler holes, as it can be used on holes from 49-62mm. The second new size, the Circle 86, provides a secure cover plate for much larger holes, between 72-86mm. The complete range, which includes the original Circle 72, allows all holes between 49-86mm to be covered with BeadMaster’s cover plates. Circle 62 and Circle 86 are available now at distributors across the UK and Ireland.

• Extension Leads

For further information, visit

• USB Charging • WiFi Control

CENTIEL UK GROWS SALES TEAM Leading UPS manufacturer, Centiel UK, has appointed Jay Rai as its newest Sales Engineer, as the company continues to expand its UK operations. Rai will be responsible for key account management and hardware sales for London and the South, reporting to Louis McGarry, Sales and Marketing Director. McGarry comments, “Centiel’s customer base for our true modular, UPS solution CumulusPower, plus our standalone UPS, PremiumTower, continues to grow. We are delighted to welcome Jay to the team as a field-based sales engineer. Jay already has a demonstrable history of working within the electrical and electronic manufacturing industry and he will now provide help with site surveys and customer contact as we generate and respond to new sales enquiries for Centiel’s industry-leading UPS solutions.” Jay Rai adds, “Centiel has shown impressive growth in the past few years and the opportunity to contribute to the future success of the organisation was impossible to turn down.” For further information, visit

• CT Range Cable Reels • ReelPro Cable Reels • Installation Accessories • TV & USB Accessories

SMJ Indoor & Outdoor Power Accessories







Visit Tel: +44 (0)1747 860088


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Wiring Accessories • Smart Lighting Control & Wireless Audio

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