Construction Update January 2022

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January 2022

Build a Sustainable Future / Multi-award-winning range of air source heat pumps / Market-leading ultra quiet sound levels / Smart control and monitoring with the MELCloud App / Guaranteed low temperature operation



January 2022

Building back greener and ‘smarter’ The government recently announced its ‘Heating and Buildings Strategy’, which is part of a much bigger document called ‘Net Zero Strategy: Build Back Greener’.


n the face of it, it is very good, with a committed £450m in grant funding so people can apply for up to £5000 towards the cost of their air source heat pump (ASHP) installation. If a typical install is around £10,000 and the government give you £5,000 then the cost to you is broadly comparable with a gas installation. This is a very welcome announcement as it is often the higher capital cost of an ASHP installation, over a gas boiler installation, which can be stumbling block. However, the bad news is that the level of grant funding means only 90,000 ASHP installations will happen over the next 3 years. That’s only 30,000 per year! That just isn’t good enough and is way short of the Prime Minister’s wish to see 600,000 ASHP’s being installed every year by 2028. We have close to 29 million existing homes in Britain. There is a long way to go before all are heating their homes and hot water with, clean, green, renewable-energy technology.

kick start more installations and reduce costs so overall prices fall and the market can then deliver more affordable installations. Even if the money isn’t enough, at least heat pumps are high on the government’s list of ways for the country to meet its net-zero ambitions.

Insulate, Insulate, Insulate What is worrying though, is that I don’t see any significant incentives for people to improve the INSULATION standards of their existing home. This is a huge problem, because homes should be well-insulated before they even consider installing an air source heat pump. A ‘FABRIC FIRST’ approach must happen in all of our existing buildings to keep them and us warm and avoid heat being wasted by escaping through uninsulated walls, floor and ceilings.

We have to strive to get there and fast, but this funding falls way short for me.

To not include a massive announcement to incentivise the upgrading of insulation standards in all existing homes is actually a travesty.

The government see this as being a catalyst for the heat pump industry and a boost to

Heat pumps AND insulation should have been given big financial incentives and government

George Clarke is an architect, writer, TV presenter and Ambassador for Ecodan air source heat pumps.

support in this announcement, because they go hand-in-hand.

Banning Gas Boilers The recently published ‘NET ZERO STRATEGY : BUILD BACK GREENER’ covers everything from farming to nuclear power and carbon capture. Lord Deben, the Chairman of the ‘Climate Change Committee (CCC)’ has been very positive and given the report the thumbs up because it sets clear environment targets and specific dates to meet them. However, the most cynical comments I’ve seen following the document’s publication is many believe that the governments initiatives for low carbon heating in homes is simply set to fail due to a lack of cash.

January 2022 I don’t think the problem is a lack of cash. The problem lies in legislation because they should actually ban gas boilers in all homes (not just new build homes) and push for their replacement with low carbon heat pumps by a certain date. Unfortunately, the government see this as a step too far and don’t want to legislate like this because they hope consumers will just gradually change to heat pumps as the technology gets better, prices reduce, gas boilers become more frowned upon and heat pumps become more common throughout the country. However, change is difficult, so who knows if the market will naturally go this way. I hope it does.

And Now For Some Good News The very, very good news is that government has announced this year that every NEW BUILD home from 2025 cannot have a gas boiler and must use heat pumps instead. I’m pleased to say that I know a number of good house-builders out there who aren’t waiting until 2025, but are installing ASHP’s in all their new housing developments already. They want their teams to be ahead of the game in understanding the technology and they want to form strong relationships with manufacturers like Mitsubishi Electric and accredited installers as soon as possible. They want to gain all of that clean, green experience now and not wait 4 years.

Unfortunately, many will continue to install gas boilers right up to the 2025 mark, because it is cheaper and it’s what they know. I suppose even the Victorians clung on to steam power until the very end. However, we cannot stall, we cannot falter, it must be FULL GREEN AHEAD, no matter how painful the transition may be. I live in hope that the biggest climate change of our lifetime will be a great success, so the entire planet as one can celebrate.

Smart Factory Will Produce Next Generation Low Carbon Heat Pumps Mitsubishi Electric is investing £15.3m in its manufacturing plant in Livingston, Scotland, with Scottish Enterprise support, in a move that will significantly increase its productivity, efficiency and research & development (R&D) capabilities. The development of a ‘smart factory’ allows the company to integrate automation and robotics equipment into its operations – and install industrial advanced sensing systems to provide real time information. The move will also enhance and develop the digital skills of Mitsubishi Electric’s employees to help support the development of next generation heat pump technology, including investigating new ‘low global warming potential’ refrigerants and materials.

The Livingston factory already produces the market-leading, Ultra Quiet Ecodan air source heat pump and the move is designed not only to lower the manufacturing emissions, but also enable customers lower their emissions too. The heating products manufactured in Scotland are renewable low carbon alternatives to traditional high carbon heating systems. This reliable, renewable heating technology delivers highly efficient sustainable space heating and hot water all year round. Decarbonising heat is a key priority in achieving the UK’s stringent net zero targets to help address the climate emergency, with heating accounting for more than 40% of global CO2 emissions. In the development of the smart factory, the company is seeking ways to incorporate the outputs into future product manufacturing to create worldleading products that reduce their overall environmental impact, while delivering renewable energy that is urgently required for meeting environmental goals and achieving net zero status.

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January 2022

How can you know what’s really happening on site?

Site safety and workforce health relies on people speaking up about health and safety concerns – but what if there is reluctance to share these openly? Confidential reporting offers a solution.


he chances are that your construction business already has a reporting route for safety concerns, or an open-door policy for staff, but you may still only be hearing half of what’s going on at the frontline. Why is that, and what can you do to make sure your site is safe for workers, visitors and the public? Knowing about risks and safety concerns allows companies to track trends and prevent incidents before they happen – keeping people safe and costs down – so wanting to hear about them is nothing new.


People don’t speak up about safety issues to their company for all sorts of reasons. Sometimes these are personal: bad experiences from speaking up in previous workplaces where nothing happened as a result; or a poor relationship with their manager that makes them fear negative repercussions from raising a genuine safety concern, just because of who they are.

Other times they may be reluctant to say anything because they believe (rightly or wrongly) that their team or the company culture sees raising issues as a negative thing, that they will be perceived as a troublemaker or a moaner, so they think it is better to say nothing. In times of economic uncertainty, people may be even less confident to speak up openly about serious safety concerns if they fear losing their job. When a concern is weighing on someone’s mind, they can be distracted by it at work, making an accident more likely, so it is better to speak up and be proactive about getting a result. Deciding not to speak up is an active choice that can have serious and regrettable consequences. CIRAS’ confidential reporting service addresses this dilemma by offering a confidential and independent way for member companies’ staff to speak up and share their concerns – without

January 2022

being identified. This keeps the focus on the issue being raised and not on the person raising it. The companies receiving a report can then investigate and take action to address the concern. CIRAS will close the loop by sharing the company response with whoever raised the concern. Because CIRAS is a confidential – not anonymous – service, our team of psychology-trained reporting analysts can ask the reporter further questions to really understand the situation and why it matters, and to give as much detail as possible to the company while keeping it confidential. Sometimes contractors’ staff might find themselves concerned about things which are the responsibility of the client or site owner. CIRAS can help here too. We take third-party concerns, where the person speaking up doesn’t work for the company their concern relates to.

Safety? We’re listening We take all genuine health, safety and wellbeing concerns unless they are about real-time issues where someone is at immediate risk of harm, or if the nature of the concern means we cannot protect the identity of individuals involved. In those cases we will make sure the person raising it knows where they can find further help and that there is still somewhere to turn to. Typical concerns raised with us are about potential hazards, equipment problems, rules and procedures – are they working as intended, and are people following them correctly? Also fatigue and shift design, issues with training and competence, welfare facilities and safety practices.

Change, too. Transition to new practices, business structures and working patterns, or new technology – among other things – is a period of increased risk, when it might be all too easy for safety issues to slip under the radar. We also take environmental concerns that can affect health and safety, such as toxic spills or storage of hazardous materials, waste management, noise, air or water quality, asbestos, gases or diesel or welding fumes. More and more, digital safety is an issue too, so we can take concerns about technology when something isn’t quite right.

Membership Get peace of mind from knowing your staff can share concerns confidentially and make the decision to be a stronger, safer business. Build on your existing safety culture with confidential reporting. You will not only reduce business risk, but membership will also unlock insights that you can act on. We analyse the safety data from concerns raised with us to highlight trends, using aggregated data with all identifying details removed. Discover cross-industry learning, including at our exclusive member events on topics that matter to you. CIRAS members have access to all reports through our website, plus member resources to make promoting and using CIRAS simpler.

Find out more W: T: 0203 142 5369


January 2022

Roann Limited reports record revenue in 2021 with over 40% increase in sales Granite and quartz worktop supplier, Roann Limited, has reported recordbreaking revenue over the past 18 months, with a 40.7% increase in sales, when compared with the prior period.

In a business update for August 2020 to November 2021, the Wakefield-based company reported an increase of £1,863,947 in sales, totalling a sales value of £6,440,579. Since Roann Limited was founded in 1990, the business has experienced significant growth and has established relationships with credible housebuilders, construction businesses and property developers, including Crest Nicholson, Taylor Wimpey and Vinci Construction. With over 400 projects in the pipeline for 2022, Roann Limited has an estimated turnover of £6 million for the next 18-month period. Key projects include Ashley Gardens with Formation Group PLC, Boatman’s Lane with HG Construction and Beechgrove from Millgate Homes. Scott Wharton, Sales Director at Roann Limited, says “We’re really excited about this period of growth here at Roann Limited. The past 18 months has been a difficult time for us all, but the increase in demand for our products and services has presented us with a new opportunity that we have relished in. We have some great projects lined up and we’re really looking forward to continuing our journey of business growth and expansion over the next few years.”


More information on Roann Limited and its products is available at

January 2022

Winners of British Woodworking Federation Awards 2021 announced The winners of the prestigious British Woodworking Federation (BWF) Awards 2021 have been revealed at an evening of celebration held at the Kimpton Fitzroy London Hotel.

This year marks the 13th anniversary of the annual Awards which celebrate outstanding achievement, skills and talent from across the woodworking and joinery sector. The six categories and winners were: Health and Safety Award – Sponsored by Intelligent Door Solutions JELD-WEN for its collaboration in developing, testing and introducing an advanced Radio Frequency Tag System, to protect pedestrians from moving industrial vehicles. The judges commended the business on “an excellent initiative that recognises the inherent danger from moving vehicles in a work environment and utilises modern technology to minimise risk of injury to pedestrians.” Process Efficiency Award – Sponsored by PIB Insurance Brokers James Latham for its innovative and collaborative product development project to produce its Finish Line Cladding Collection. James Latham picked up the award for “a wellresearched and meticulously conducted process that remained faithful to the design brief and achieved optimum results.”

Product Design in Wood Award – Sponsored by Teknos

dedicated to contributing to the continued growth of the business.”

James Latham for collaborating with coatings and modified wood experts to develop a factory finished exterior cladding range with outstanding performance. The business was recognised for “an excellent example of collaboration, resulting in an innovative solution for timber cladding that ensures efficiency, quality control and product performance.”

Woodworking Apprentice of the Year Award – Sponsored by CITB

Woodworking Project of the Year Award – Sponsored by FIT Show TMJ Interiors for its complex design, manufacture and install of a striking feature ceiling in London’s exclusive Mayfair. The judges praised the company for “quite simply a breathtaking piece of work that showcases black walnut and creates a stunningly impressive visual impression.” Rising Star Award – Sponsored by Dixon International Group Bradley Brookes, Sales Director at Brookeswood Joinery Ltd, for his ability to transform ways of working and implement process changes that lead to continued improvement throughout the business. According to Brookeswood Joinery: “Bradley brings great enthusiasm and is

Harvey Coyne, apprentice at The Joinery Co. Ltd, for demonstrating a real passion for his work and excelling in the opportunity to use his high level of creativity and workmanship. According to The Joinery Co: “Harvey has been a model student who has excelled both at college and in the workplace. It has been a pleasure to work with someone so keen and enthusiastic to learn.” Commenting on this years’ winners and the Awards ceremony, Helen Hewitt, Chief Executive of the BWF, said: “The BWF Awards celebrate the outstanding talent and skills in the woodworking and joinery sector, and I want to congratulate all our winners who continue to push the boundaries in our sector. Every year I’m amazed at the hard work, innovation and incredible skill that is demonstrated in our sector and it gives me so much pride at what is achieved. The Awards were a fantastic opportunity to bring the industry together once again and celebrate the success and exciting achievements of all of our finalists.”


January 2022

CONSTRUCTION 2021: A YEAR IN REVIEW Simon Rowland, Partner and Head of Construction and Engineering and Michelle Essen, Managing Associate at law firm Womble Bond Dickinson, take a look at the events of 2021 and the potential challenges and opportunities that the sector could be presented with in 2022. Given that 80 per cent of timber used in the UK is imported, wildfires and insect damage in supplier countries such as Canada and Sweden have also had a detrimental impact on stock.

There is no doubt that 2021 has been a tough year for the construction industry. Global disruption from the pandemic, Brexit and environmental disasters have left their mark on the sector. In the latest ONS figures, construction outputs fell for the third month in a row. Figures for July and August slumped back to their lowest point since February, hitting 58.7 on the UK index – a sharp reduction from the 24 years high of 66.3 in June.


With the sector at an apparent impasse and sustainability increasingly high on the global agenda, Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) look more and more likely to be a key part in addressing the struggles faced by the construction industry. In the face of such a dramatic drop in

productivity, industry heavyweights are putting their stakes on MMC. For example, volume housebuilder Barratt has reported that 25 per cent of the 12,243 homes built by the end of its most recent financial year used MMC. As 2021 draws to a close, it’s time to consider new construction solutions for a new world. Brexit and supply chain issues In January 2020, we saw the UK finally leave the European Union almost four years after the Brexit referendum. While the UK-EU Trade and Co-operation Agreement has protected trades from any further tariffs, additional red tape and border checks have inevitably slowed down the movement of construction supplies.

The shortage of materials has resulted in a price hike that cannot be underestimated. The Timber Price Index hit 92.13 in May 21 Trade Federation (TTF) reported that timber prices surged by 50 per cent between January and May 2021. Add to that, the October 2021 data from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) showed that structural steel costs were 72.6 per cent higher than the year previous, and in November we saw steel prices increase for the seventh time in 2021. With these and other shortages across the board, it’s a perfect storm for disruption in an industry built on tight margins. While MMC is not the silver bullet to addressing the materials crisis and certainly not a short-term solution for everyone, MMC’s added benefits of less waste and less weather damage could clearly help the industry. Housing crisis The UK housing crisis is reaching fever pitch, with house prices rising faster than every other economic metric. The government itself has said that “a significant proportion of homes must be built using modern methods of construction (MMC) if we are to meet the target to deliver

January 2022 300,000 homes annually”. Areas such as the South East of England in particular are in desperate need of housing, but lack the local skilled workforces required to carry out onsite construction. MMC presents an opportunity to tackle the housing crisis in key areas of the country, while at the same time supporting local communities in different areas of the country through investment in MMC manufacturing sites, thus aiding the “levelling up” agenda. Skills shortage In June 2021, the ONS reported that the number of EU workers seeking jobs in the UK has dropped by 17 per cent. But unlike the supply issues, the UK’s skills shortage began long before the UK’s departure from the EU. In 2018, the ONS reported that construction had fallen out of the list of top 10 jobs for people aged 22-29. MMC has the potential to create tens of thousands of jobs for UK workers - it is estimated that if 75,000 modular homes are constructed per year it could create 50,000 new jobs. The challenge, however, lies in attracting new talent to the industry and keeping workers engaged. The solution to this may be to appeal to a younger, increasingly environmentally conscious workforce, who wants to make a positive contribution to society in a sustainable industry. MMC offers a route to greener buildings, and this could make the sector more attractive to younger workers. Move to sustainability 2021 has been the year of sustainability. As we strive for a green recovery, electric vehicles, plant-based industries, renewable energy technologies and more have been at the forefront of both government and industry objectives for the future. Momentum has

grown throughout the year, gathering pace in the lead up to COP26. This represents a major global shift towards reducing CO2 emissions to protect the planet. As we embark on a decade of climate action, MMC has an opportunity to fill a gap in the housing market for homes that contribute to Net Zero targets. MMC enables geographical fluidity which then contributes to a reduction of on-site pollution levels and material waste. It bolsters the argument for focusing on a method of building with a lower environmental impact. Looking ahead to 2022 - What can we expect for the construction industry in 2022? 2022 for the construction industry is likely to bring the continued development of many of the themes mentioned above. MMC will remain high on the agenda, with continued investment and learnings by the industry. There will be further discussions around how to incentivise increased use of MMC, part of which will be driven also by the need to standardise MMC so it is more easily and more widely adoptable. Materials and labour and skills shortages are here to stay for the immediate future. It will take time for the dust to settle on materials shortages, for the industry to work out how to increase efficiencies and reduce waste, and to find new or alternative supply chains or materials. For labour and skills shortages, it will take time for training to take place to increase the number of HGV drivers, for apprentices to become qualified, and for the industry to attract younger talent. While the conversations around these issues will continue, positive steps are being taken – but the pace of change will depend on how quickly we learn from each other around what works (or doesn’t work), and

how we share those learnings. Net zero will increasingly be at the forefront of business’ minds, not just in the construction industry but across the board. Businesses which are not pure construction businesses will increasingly look to the construction industry to help them meet their Net Zero objectives. The conversation will also widen from Net Zero to ESG (Environment, Social, and Governance). Finally, we will be hearing a lot more about building safety, as the Building Safety Bill is likely to be given Royal Assent next year, the new Residential Property Developer Tax will apply from April 2022, and outcomes from the Grenfell Inquiry start to filter through. These will bring significant changes for the construction industry and difficult but necessary conversations will flow from these. All of the above are interdependent – building safety and Net Zero are all relevant to ESG. ESG will include looking at how our workforce is made up, for example from a diversity and inclusion perspective and the more diverse and inclusive the industry is, the more likely it is to attract young workers and new talent. This is turn will help address the skills and labour shortage. Skills and labour are needed to help physically deliver materials, to innovate solutions around materials shortages, and to deliver on MMC. MMC can then help businesses deliver on ESG through less waste, lower embodied carbon processes, and increased safety. While we know the last couple of years in the construction industry have been tough, we can see the virtuous circle here, and a lot of potential for the year to come. For more information on Womble Bond Dickinson’s rebuild Britain campaign, visit www. rebuild-britain.


January 2022

The Importance of Asbestos Training Despite clear guidance from The Health & Safety Executive (HSE), thousands of employers are still neglecting their responsibilities by not insisting on essential asbestos training for their workforce. Regardless of the size of a company, there is a legal requirement to prevent exposing employees and the public to asbestos by ensuring it is identified on site prior to commencing work. A lack of knowledge and training means the HSE continue to investigate a substantial number of cases each year in the UK which lead to prosecution, due to breaching Regulation 5 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 Employers are required to assess training needs for their staff, ensuring the correct level is delivered. Asbestos awareness training is required to be given to employees whose work could foreseeably expose them to asbestos. In particularly, it should be given to all demolition workers and those workers in the refurbishment, maintenance and allied trades where their work will disturb the fabric of the building and ACMs may become exposed.

that the UK will be facing a greater number of deaths from asbestos over the next 15 – 60 years. To reduce this risk, it is important that delivery of asbestos training returns to pre-Covid levels.” said Chief Operating Officer, Craig Evans. Deaths from asbestos exposure are at their peak after widespread use between 1950s and 70s. Since 2018, there have been more than 5,000 deaths annually in the UK from asbestos-related cancers – making it the largest single industrial killer ever seen in the UK. Established in 2008, UKATA is a highly respected, leading authority on asbestos training. Our passion is to both maintain and improve asbestos training, ensuring the highest standards are upheld by means of continually monitoring UKATA training provided by our members.

Asbestos awareness training is not training to work with any forms of asbestos. A higher level of training is required for those that wish to intentionally work with the material. Duty to manage asbestos training is for those responsible for the maintenance of non-domestic premises. It provides information on the requirement for the location of where asbestos is present in a building and what condition it is in. This would normally include, but is not limited to duty holder’s assistants, appointed persons assistants, building owners, landlords, sub-lessors, managing agents etc. and any person assisting duty holders in the compliance with CAR 2012 Regulation 4. There are over a million construction workers in the UK, including those working on construction of new buildings and repairs or alterations to existing properties which may predate 2000. The importation, supply and use of all asbestos has been banned in the UK since 1999, meaning properties built or refurbished prior, may contain asbestos containing materials. The number of construction workers doesn’t reflect the industry figures for asbestos training courses delivered. Asbestos training delivery took a dramatic dip throughout 2020/2021 during the Covid 19 pandemic, yet asbestos related health issues remain.


“The latency period of asbestos, coupled with a substantial drop in training numbers, could mean

UKATA continuously works within current legislation as a minimum, whilst collaborating with industry partners to ensure that the UK has the highest standards of asbestos safety. UKATA freely shares knowledge and information both on our website and across social media, demonstrating that education remains our top priority. To find a UKATA approved asbestos training provider near you, visit or for free advice call our team on 01246 824437.

Over 5,000 people die in the UK each year due to asbestos related diseases. It is a legal requirement that all who may come across asbestos in their day to day work have been provided with the relevant asbestos training. Asbestos can be found in many products used in building materials and may also be present in soils and surrounding grounds.

Have you received asbestos training? UK Asbestos Training Association “UKATA” sets standards in asbestos training and ensures that its members meet those standards. Book with a UKATA approved asbestos training provider using the nationwide directory online at or call 01246 824 437.


INFO@UKATA.ORG.UK UKATA is a not for profit association

Minimum Size Maximum Flexibility

January 2022

Ultra-small connector for lighting and industrial applications expanded to include distribution blocks

Thus, they serve both for energy and signal distribution.


ieland Electric introduces the RST® Micro, a compact waterproof connector with a diameter of less than 15 mm that meets the highest design and flexibility criteria. The plug is in high demand anywhere technology is getting smaller and smaller, necessitating smaller and smaller electrical connections Connector in miniature size for extra-low-voltage and network applications. The 2 to 3 pole connector with a diameter of less than 15 mm is designed specifically for connecting voltage or current sources to LED modules. Additionally, it is well-suited for use in an industrial setting. Network applications are also no difficulty due to the rated values. Four mechanically separated and color-

coded connectors allow the safe separation of various applications. Particularly small and unobtrusive, simple to work without any disruptive locking geometries, strain-resistant, and sealed to IP66, 68 & 69, the RST® Micro is a connector that is unique on the market due to its compact design and functionality. Extension by distribution blocks. The latest addition to the modular RST® system are the new distribution blocks for the RST® Micro. Available in 1 in / 2 out and 1 in / 3 out for 2 & 3 pole. New manufacturing technologies have made it possible to reduce the size to a minimum. The distributors are available for all common codings and the internal wiring offers a serial or a parallel option. The addition of the distributors rounds off the system to a large extent, as the distributors occupy a central position in the electrical infrastructure of the RST® system.

Pluggable installation saves time and money. As with the bigger members of the RST® product family, the RST® Micro connector enables very simple, quick, and safe installation. The continuous pluggable RST system - from the distributor to the electrical device - is composed of factoryassembled and tested components with the same design quality assured at all times. This simplifies the calculation of project and process flows. When compared to conventional installation, assembly times can be decreased by up to 70%. Costs are decreased by 30% in total. Additionally, the adaptable plug-in system aids with conversions and extensions, as installation is quick and simple. Defective devices are quickly replaced.

Tel: 01483 531213 Web:


January 2022

First of its kind - Diesel And AdBlue Bucket Bundie for J A Jackson


stablished in 1967, J A Jackson Quarries & Recycling Ltd are a family run business who supply quarried and recycled aggregates. Providers of sustainable building materials, aggregates and ready-mix concrete, the company also provide domestic and commercial skip hire and have a fully licenced waste transfer station and facilities for inert tipping. J A Jackson operates a fleet of more than 20 tippers, artics, skip wagons and concrete mixers. The company’s quarries in Preston, Leyland and Lancaster are all within easy reach of the region’s motorway network making access and distribution as efficient and effective as possible.

throughout the UK. Based on the same concept as the patented Bucket Bundie Fuel Bowser, Ace Plant’s Bucket Bundie Store was seen shortlisted in the Institute of Quarrying’s Excellence Awards in the knowledge and innovation category - a fantastic accolade for the ‘Bundie Bowser’ name. Ace Plant have recently launched the first Bucket Bundie that is capable of carrying both Diesel and AdBlue at the same time. This capability can already be seen in Ace Plant’s static, site tow and road tow ranges but has finally been

made possible within the Bucket Bundie range. J A Jackson first found out about the Ace Plant Bucket Bundie Bowser after searching the internet about fuel bowsers. They liked the fact that the Bucket Bundie can be transported by existing site machinery without the need for a tractor. These units remove the need for lifting chains as well as the need for the operator to leave the safety of the machine’s cab to attach any chains. It features a patented bucket loading system with special slots above the support legs that allow a wheel loader operator to easily pick up and move the bowser using the machine’s front bucket. With the loader bucket crowded back, the Bucket Bundie is held securely for safe transport across rough ground – this combination works much better than a towed bowser which can be difficult to move and reverse – particularly on rough terrain. J A Jackson say that the Bucket Bundie will be a benefit to their business as the unit will result in “less risk of contamination and we no longer need to use the 5 gallon drums”. In turn, this also makes refuelling a faster and safer processes with less risk of spillage. The Bucket Bundie Bowser is available in three different capacities: 450L, 1000L & 2250L. To find out more visit or call 01908 562191.

J A Jackson have recently added the first combined Diesel / AdBlue Bucket Bundie Fuel Bowser to their fleet provided by manufacturers, Ace Plant.


Ace Plant, home of the ‘Bundie Bowser’ fuel storage range, are a plant hire and sales company based in Buckinghamshire who utilise their engineering roots to manufacture Fuel Storage Solutions and Dust Suppression equipment for hire and sale

Images courtesy of Alison Miller – J A Jackson.

First of its kind—Diesel and AdBlue Bucket Bundie for J A Jackson

01908 562191

MK19 MK18 6LA 5LJ


January 2022

The never-ending lifecycle of copper When it comes to construction and plumbing materials, how many products out there truly stand the test of time?


lastic materials have become extremely popular in recent years due to their affordability and, with contractors under pressure with fixed price contracts, many look to these cheaper materials as a solution. However, there are actually a number of serious environmental problems with using plastic materials and, once they reach the end of their life, they often end up in landfill or on beaches. Copper, on the other hand, is one of the few items that you’ll never see lying in a skip or on a beach. For plumbing, copper has a unique superpower that no other pipe has – it lives forever.

The problem with plastic Since its invention six decades ago, plastic use has grown exponentially and resulted in over 8.3 billion metric tons of various plastics and, according to National Geographic, 91% of all plastics produced in the world have not been recycled.


When it comes to the construction industry, nearly every new build home nowadays uses plastic pipes in both underfloor and plumbing applications and this is mainly down to the plastics industry focusing

on the benefits, while downplaying the environmental impact. Plastic is made up of synthetic materials and polymers, making the recycling process extremely complicated. As a result, plastics manufacturers are still attempting to work out how to separate and reuse the components of plastics and any claims that plastic pipes are fully recyclable is simply greenwashing. For example, multi-layer composite (MLC) tube, consisting of layers of plastic and aluminium, is a prime example of commonly used tube that cannot be recycled. Additionally, plastic compounds such as polyvinylchloride (PVC), polyethylene (PE) or cross-linked polyethylene (PEX) all deteriorate over time, making them less and less suitable for recycling. According to the University of Wisconsin Madison, around 100 million tons of multilayer thermoplastics are produced globally each year and, because there is no way to separate the polymers, almost all of that plastic ends up in landfills or incinerators. As it stands, there are no recycling frameworks in place for these materials, so their ‘recyclability’ is currently nothing but theoretical.

Research by CORDIS supports the evidence that these types of pipes are not recyclable, stating that “conventional non-recyclable pipes for heating plumbing systems are manufactured from non-recyclable cross linked PEX. They are also made of PEX/AL, which comprises a layer of aluminium sandwiched between two PEX layers.” Furthermore, CORDIS analysis also states that attempting to recycle these types of pipes “results in highly toxic by-products.” So, with the world waking up to the plastics problem, why are we still allowing plastic pipes in our homes? Only 9% of the world’s plastic has ever been recycled, so every time you

January 2022 choose plastic pipes over sustainable alternatives, the world’s plastic problem gets a little bit worse.

Copper’s credentials Copper has a major advantage as a construction material in that it can be recycled again and again without losing any of its properties, performance, or value. There is also no difference in the quality of recycled copper and mined copper, so they can be used interchangeably – copper used once will be identical to that used 1,000 or 1,000,000 times. Copper has been recycled and reused for as long as the material itself has been in use and there is a fully developed scrap-collecting infrastructure in place which has existed for centuries. When they come to the end of their life, copper pipes are taken to a scrap merchant and, unlike plastic pipes, are 100% recycled. They simply go into the furnace and are melted down to form a block of pure copper which is stretched out, made into brand new tubes, and cut to size. Put simply, copper is copper. Unlike other materials such as plastics, copper and copper alloys have standard components which do not vary between manufacturers, so when you buy copper, you know exactly what you’re getting. This also means they can be returned to their constituent elements once they have fulfilled their purpose. As a result, around half of Europe’s copper demand is currently being met by recycled materials and research suggests that there are approximately 5.6 billion metric tons of copper in circulation – a figure more than sufficient to surpass both current and future demand. What’s more, according to the International Copper Association, the recycling of copper requires up to 85% less energy than primary production and, around the world, this saves 40 million tons of CO2 – the equivalent emissions of 16 million cars.

The professional choice Copper has long been the material of choice when it comes to supplying water, heating, and gas to buildings and the tradition of copper tubes is

one that spans centuries. Not only is it the sustainable choice, with a neverending lifecycle, but it also has a number of other desirable properties. Copper is proven to be the healthy choice and supports your health and wellbeing due to its naturally occurring anti-bacterial and antimicrobial properties which discourage the growth of harmful organisms. Additionally, due to its unique thermal properties, copper water systems can safely withstand thermal shocking at 70 degrees Celsius to effectively kill waterborne bacteria such as legionella pneumophila. Not only does copper support your health and wellbeing, it is also the safer option for use in the construction industry. For example, its incredibly high melting point means copper pipes won’t melt, burn, or give off toxic fumes in a building fire like plastic will. An official building code report published by the International Code Council cites plastic material like piping as a “dangerous void” because of how it can melt, burn, and spread fires. Many plastics are intumescent materials, which means they grow in size in the event of fire, which creates extreme fire hazards because of how they allow fires to spread. Furthermore, copper tube offers fantastic versatility and use across utilities including water, heating, gas, and air conditioning – all while offering a greater choice and longevity. Being able to withstand extreme temperatures, pressures, and exposure to UV and oxygen, it can be used for a range of purposes and across a multitude of environments without the integrity being altered. As

the metal isn’t permeable, the chance of leakage or contamination from outside sources is also incredibly low.

Standing the test of time Put simply, copper lasts a lifetime and investing in this material is much more beneficial and cost-effective in the long run. If installed with care, copper pipes in homes can outlast the life of the house, minimising the need to spend additional money in the future. And what’s more, they can still be recycled and reused at the end of the building’s lifetime. Copper has a much longer lifespan than cheaper alternatives and is one of the only construction and plumbing materials which can be infinitely recycled – it literally lasts forever! So, we would encourage anyone who is looking for a reliable product which is sustainable and truly stands the test of time to choose copper. It’s a solution that is perfectly placed to serve the construction industry now and for future generations.

Make the right choice. Choose copper.


It’s a no brainer Sleek lines with sustainability at the core — Modus PVC-U windows At a glance: Clean and contemporary looks with slimmer sight lines – unlike traditional PVC-U windows. Advanced engineering technology – achieves the new A++ Window Energy Rating and a 0.7 U-value. Sustainability as standard – manufactured using 50% recycled material. Saves money – costs up to 50% less than equivalents.

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January 2022

As The Focus On Climate Change Continues To Grow So Does The Need For Net Zero Buildings And Improving Our Carbon Footprint.


EZE’s ECdrive T2 automatic sliding doors with a thermally broken profile system – the GCprofile Therm offer a solution. The GCprofile Therm accommodates up to 32 mm glass thickness in either twopane insulation glass with 2x ESG 6mm, UG value 1.0, or threepane insulation glass with 3x ESG 4 mm, UG value 0.8. The profile system uses slim aluminium frames which reduce visible sightlines by approx. 30 mm – giving designers greater ability to produce a clean design aesthetic while providing greater efficiency. With increased performance for leaf weight of up to 140 kg, the GCprofile Therm also boasts improved air tightness (compared to other ISO profile systems), better sound insulation and improved wet weather durability aided by its fit and an optional floor guide with drainage. It can be combined with manual and motorised GEZE hook bolt locks, without losing thermal separation and the appearance of the system remains discreet, even with locking. A new brochure has been produced to explain the package. This is available by calling the marketing team on 01543 443015 or emailing

For more information about GEZE UK’s comprehensive range of automatic and manual door closers call 01543 443000 or visit


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January 2022

BESA welcomes Budget boost for green skills The Building Engineering Services Association (BESA) has applauded the Chancellor for setting aside £3.8bn for education and skills with particular focus on additional support for SMEs and the creation of new T-levels to help young adults take up vocational careers.

The new funds announced in this week’s Budget back up promises made by the government in last week’s Net Zero strategy to create 440,000 ‘green collar’ jobs by 2030 to help decarbonise key sectors of the economy including heating and cooling of buildings. The Budget also contained news of a business rates reduction scheme for firms looking to install heat networks, solar panels, and battery storage. The Association said this would provide welcome impetus to technologies that will play a key role in reducing the 40% of global carbon emissions linked to the built environment. BESA welcomed the continued commitment to the Lifetime Skills Guarantee, which the government says could reach up to 11 million adults giving them the opportunity to gain a new qualification for free. However, the Association said it was important to target this funding at areas where there are key skills gaps including building services.

The Chancellor also restated his commitment to the Help to Grow scheme, which BESA thinks could provide useful additional support to SMEs to help boost their productivity and business growth. Comprehensive The Association said employers should work with the government to finalise a more comprehensive national plan for low carbon skills to help create the two million jobs needed to help fully decarbonise the economy by 2050. According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) only about 200,000 people are currently employed in sectors directly linked to decarbonisation including energy efficiency and renewables. “The government is clearly committed to reducing the carbon footprint of the built environment but delivering that vision will require a huge expansion and upskilling of the workforce in key sectors like engineering and construction,” said BESA President Neil Brackenridge.

“UK vacancies are at their highest levels since records began at 1.1 million (according to ONS) but there are still thousands of young people, in particular, looking for work,” he added. “Many now aspire to careers where they can have an impact on the climate crisis. “However, this will require a considerable increase in the number of people guided towards technical training – like T-levels and vocational degrees – with a particular emphasis on STEM subjects. So, the additional funding announced today by the Chancellor is very welcome, but it needs to be backed up by a comprehensive skills plan to ensure it is spent wisely.”


HERE TODAY FOR YOUR TOMORROW The Electric Heating Company are one of the foremost suppliers of electric heating and hot water products in the UK since 2005

January 2022

Schöck Isokorb for award winning ‘Sky-House’ scheme


he ‘Sky-House’ development, at Oughtibridge Mill to the north of Sheffield, comprises forty highspecification homes. The term ‘Sky-House’ being derived from the spacious feel of the properties, which benefit from unrivalled views and offer bright and airy living, complete with riverside balconies. Designed by CODA Architecture, it is built very much with sustainability in mind and minimising any risk of thermal bridging at the balcony detailing is critical. The load-bearing structural thermal break that easily achieves this; and most effectively helps the project meet compliance with the necessary Building Regulations (and the impending Future Homes Standard criteria) is the Schöck Isokorb. Specifically it is the Schöck Isokorb T type SK for concreteto-steel connectivity that is incorporated at Oughtibridge Mill. This is a complete system thermal break. It is unique in being the only formally UK approved product that satisfies the load-bearing and thermal insulation requirements for this type of application, providing assurance to the end-user that the safest product has been selected for their building needs.

The avoidance of thermal bridging is extremely important for a number of reasons. Any local heat loss will result in more energy being required to maintain the internal temperature of the building. Also, low internal surface temperatures in the area of any thermal bridge can cause condensation and this in turn is likely to result in structural integrity problems. Mould growth too is a possible risk, which in a residential situation can cause asthma and allergies.

Award winning scheme Oughtibridge Mill ‘Sky-House’ is an award winning scheme – recipient of the Development of the Year (fewer than 50 homes) at the Insider Yorkshire Property Industry Awards 2021. It is part of a wider scheme for 320 new homes that will enable the regeneration of this former industrial mill site. It had been a flourishing paper mill from Victorian times until its closure in 2007 and renovation of the old mill building for use as a mixeduse food hall, community hub and leisure facility is underway. To reference the industrial history of

the area, a sensitive contemporary design style features saw-toothed roofs on the three and four-bed townhouses.

All Isokorb products are fully compliant In addition to its comprehensive range of Isokorb solutions for concrete-to-steel, concrete-toconcrete and steel-to-steel – Schöck also offers a maintenance free alternative to wrapped parapets. All products meet full compliance with the relevant UK building regulations and have the security of independent BBA Certification, which provides NHBC approval. The temperature factor requirement (fRSI) used to indicate condensation risk, which for residential buildings must be equal to, or greater than, 0.75 is also easily met by incorporating the Isokorb. Contact Schöck on 01865 290 890; or visit the website at for full details of the Isokorb range


January 2022

Zentia launches apprenticeship programme Six raw recruits have joined Zentia’s new apprenticeship programme.

Leading ceiling systems manufacturer Zentia has launched a formal apprenticeship programme at its two factories in the UK. The company has taken on six recruits in a variety of roles for its ceiling tiles and grid/suspension system factories in Gateshead, Tyne and Wear. They include a laboratory technician, two process operators, a manufacturing engineer, HR administrator and HSE technician, some of whom are combining on-thejob


training with a day a week at college, over 18 to 42 months. Zentia already employs seven former apprentices from as long ago as the 1990s in roles ranging from engineering supervisor, project engineer, process improvement engineer and junior control systems engineer to shift maintenance technician. Project engineer Paul Snowdon joined Zentia (evolved from Armstrong Ceiling Solutions) in 1990, aged 16, as one of four mechanical and electrical apprentices. Choosing the mechanical route, he learned a multitude of skills including turning, milling and pipefitting, as well as

completing day release at Newcastle College to study. Since completing his apprenticeship, he has experienced several roles in the engineering department, had the opportunity to travel with the company to other plants, and been involved in exciting initiatives. He said: “I can’t thank the ex-fitters and staff past and present enough for the support I have received over the years. An apprenticeship really is a stepping stone to a new career and my advice would be work hard, take advantage of the wealth of experience around you, enjoy it, and you will meet some very interesting people. You will more than likely meet friends for life, just like I have.

“In our industry I really believe the apprenticeship route is second to none, getting hands-on experience whilst studying for your qualifications. These are exciting times for Zentia, with the heavy investment in the plant and new equipment. Zentia have identified key roles and skills across both plants and as a result have recruited talented young individuals to fill the gaps and become valued members of the Zentia family. Hopefully, these young individuals will move the Zentia brand forward and share in their successes.” Zentia’s head of HR Nicky Gallagher explained that the company had historically had a level of success in recruiting mechanical and electrical apprentices and seeing their careers develop as they moved on into permanent roles. But these opportunities had been on an ad-hoc, sporadic basis rather than in set numbers or annually. She said: “As we look to further grow our business, people development is high on our agenda and apprenticeships form part of this activity. I’m therefore delighted we now have the opportunity to launch the Zentia Apprenticeship Programme, and our plan is to recruit further apprentices each year.

January 2022

Restoring a fire damaged home to its traditional, historic beauty “It’s an emotional rollercoaster losing your home in a fire,” says Alex Coppock, architect, Communion Architects. “The resurrection project was all about recreating a healthy home than honoured the cottage’s traditional beauty.”


he thatched cottage in Worcestershire suffered an extremely bad fire. This left the downstairs of the property severely damaged, the second floor almost lost and the roof completely demolished. “The historic fabric and traditional structure of the part-Medieval, part-Victorian cottage had been almost destroyed,” says Alex. “It needed a lot of care to restore it to its former glory.


“As different areas of the property were in different conditions, designing the right solution was challenging. It was difficult to know where to start. We worked with Timothy Smith Builders Ltd to bring the project to life.”

January 2022 leave them unpainted – something you only usually do if you’re polishing or marbling plaster. “It’s a learning experience at the start, as you begin to understand how to use the lime plaster, but it’s incredibly easy to pick up. If it does start to dry, you can damp it down and it comes back to life again. It’s very workable.”

An elegant finish “The homeowner is thrilled,” says Alex. “The project has delivered the best of both worlds: a restored home, using traditional materials, which means it will stay dry and warm.”

Matching tradition and heritage “The cottage was a listed building, so we collaborated with the conservation officer and followed Historic England guidance to ensure we preserved the historical elegance of the property and best practice,” says Alex. “Breathability was also incredibly important. Much of the water damage from the fire had dried out, but the original structure of the building only contained an ‘outer leaf’ wall. “An ‘outer leaf wall’ means that as soon as the outside wall gets wet, the inside wall becomes vulnerable to damp. “Protecting the building, called for a way to keep it dry, healthy and comfortable for a long time to come. We specified a woodfibre board with a lime plaster internally and lime render externally. The cottage was originally built using lime-based products and had stood the property in good stead all these years until fire tore it apart. “Lime Green was recommended to us by a friend who’d used their mortars, plasters and renders on several occasions and found them to be ideal. “They gave us a ‘one-stop-shop’ for all the lime-based materials we needed: Internal Warmshell Insulation (IWI) system (woodfibre insulation boards topped with Solo lime plaster) and an external lime render.

“We had some great technical advice from the Lime Green team. They helped us understand our lime-based options, how different products and materials work together, and how to get the best results. Their products make lime very easy to use. “It is so good to return the cottage back to its former glory, with modern versions of the honest materials that would have been used in the Medieval and Victorian eras.”

Restoring traditional beauty “I’d used traditional lime products before, but the process was always much slower – waiting for up to seven days between coats while the material fully dries out,” says Ian Miller, master plasterer.

“The home looks absolutely beautiful. Everyone involved couldn’t be happier with the results,” finishes Alex. “Lime Green’s experience and knowledge in regard to the project specifications, and the team’s practical assistance on site, means we’ll definitely be recommending them for future projects. “It’s been a privilege working with a team of talented and experienced contractors, hand in hand with Lime Green, to give this historic cottage the opportunity to continue to be a beautiful dwelling for anyone who becomes part of its future story for hundreds of years to come.” To find out more about the materials used, visit Lime Green Products Ltd or call 01952 728 611.

“Lime Green’s materials were much quicker to use – just put a coat on, notch with a trowel, embed mesh all over, apply another 3mm on top, flatten, leave for 1.5 hours and finish with a trowel. That’s it – you do the wall once, instead of up to three times, as with other lime plasters I’ve used. “The products – Solo (one coat lime plaster) and Ultra (insulating base coat) – are great and easy to work with. Once you’ve got the consistency right, they’re easy to apply and the finish is absolutely fantastic. “The homeowner is so delighted with the finish, they and the architect have agreed just to seal the walls and to


January 2022

Lindapter fire rated range of Decking Fixings

At the request of the UK Sales Engineers Lindapter commissioned BRE Global Ltd to assess the performance of a number of decking fixing products when subjected to a standard fire exposure whilst under a specified load. The performance was assessed in terms of their ability to maintain the load under prescribed heating conditions. The decking fixings were installed into concrete backed composite decking profiles using M8 threaded rod (property class 8.8) and tightened to our recommended torque as per our installation instructions. A specified load as outlined in the table below was hung from the fixing and exposed to the standard fire curve according to BS EN 1991-1-2. Tests were repeated and the failure time was recorded as the time when the fixing can no longer sustain the suspended load.


In all but one test the failure mode was recorded as thermal expansion of the composite deck which led to the deformation of the re-entrant and ultimately loosening of the fixing. Below are the load limits and exposure times based on the tests performed for a 60 minute and 90 minute fire rating, please note that these are absolute values.

Temperature (°C)



Test Duration (mins)

60 minutes (F60)

90 minutes (F90)

Product Type

Tensile load (kN)

Tensile load (kN)
















For standard safe working loads with factors of safety at ambient temperature please refer to the Lindapter website. In addition to the above, Lindapter’s range of decking fixings are also considered to satisfy the requirements of performance class A1 (non-combustible) for the characteristic Reaction to Fire, in accordance with the EC decision 96/603/EC. The BRE Global test report P116310 Issue 1 is available on request. More information on Lindapter products and their fire ratings can be found on the company’s website: *Calculated values based on tests performed on similar designed products

January 2022

What is a Heat Pump? It is a direct expansion cycle (DX) that comprises of a Compressor, an Evaporator a Condenser and an Expansion Device. It uses refrigerant as a media to transfer unwanted energy (heat) from inside to outside (cooling) or from outside to inside (heating). In the system there is a reversing valve that changes the evaporator to a condenser and a condenser to an evaporator (hence the reverse cycle term). Why refrigerant? Refrigerant is a chemical gas that changes phase from gas to liquid and visa versa. It is extremely energy efficient and can carry more the 50 times energy per weight than air and 10 times more than water. It boils at as low as -50°C (water +100°C) and condenses at as high as 140°C. These characteristic makes it suitable for most habitable areas of the world, smaller inter connecting pipes and compact and very cost effective. The refrigerant safety class for domestic use MUST be A1 class non-flammable. There are other classes A2, A2L flammables and can be explosive under pressure and A3 highly flammable and explosive. Classes are as defined by ISO817 & ASHRAE 34 standards The efficiency of cooling (EER) cycle or heating cycle (COP) can range anything between 250% (2.5/1) to 500% (5/1) (that is for every energy unit, say1 kW electricity consumed, up to 5 kW can be absorbed from inside (unwanted heat) to be rejected outside or absorbed from outside air or water or ground and transferred to inside to heat a house or domestic hot water). There are mainly Air to Air (most common and cost effective), Water to Air & Water to Water systems. Systems can be compact (all components in one box) or Single Splits One indoor and One outdoor or Multi Splits where multiple indoor units connected to One outdoor unit. The Indoor units can be a wall, floor, Ceiling or Ducted fan coils or a refrigerant to water heat exchanger to provide domestic hot water or medium temperature heating water for under floor heating or radiators. The interconnecting refrigeration pipe work would require specialist approved refrigeration engineers. There are no extra safety control systems (provided the refrigerant is A1 class non-flammable) and no chimneys, extra builder’s work or electrical supplies. Tel: 01483 478715

Safe, Healthy, Energy Efficient & Environmentally Friendly Heat Pumps *

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LG One to One & Multi Splits Ideal for Domestic/Apartments Heating / Cooling Up to 5 rooms from one outdoor unit


Ideal for Residential & Small Commercial/Offices Heating / Hot Water / Cooling Up to 11 indoor units from one outdoor unit



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LG Therma V ™

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RADIATOR Radiators

FLOORHEATING Floor-heating

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* All Heat Pumps supplied by Space Air contains Non-flammable A1 Class Refrigerants such as R410A Space Air are under obligation to meet H&S 2016 No. 1107 Statutory Instrument to not supply equipment containing A2L class (R32) flammable refrigerant without conforming to Part 2 of the Statutory Instrument.

01483 478 715 •


January 2022

Kelly Tanks provide innovative, cost-effective Concrete Washout & Water Treatment Systems for hire or purchase. The well-established CWS Concrete Washout is the product of choice for washing off concrete wagons and equipment. Kelly Tanks also offers a range of Water Treatment tanks and systems for filtration and/or separation. Following the success and increased demand for their equipment, Kelly Tanks consistently release new products to help ensure safe and compliant waste-water treatment on building sites across the UK and overseas. Building on the triumphs of their systems for concrete washout and the separation of solids and liquids in wastewater, Kelly Tanks have launched a range of modular Dosing Units used for monitoring and controlling pH & TSS levels and/or providing proportional chemical dosing, their unique design means the units can be fitted to most tanks and positioned as required without the need for large, specialised equipment. Continuing with their innovative, sustainable approach, Kelly Tanks are also set to introduce a Renewable Energy system. This innovative product range is complemented by a commitment to excellent customer service. “As a company we pride ourselves in putting the customer first. We are proud of our fast, nimble approach in providing our customer with exactly what they need. As well as our equipment, we can supply familiarisation training, testing services and full onsite water management teams. We also design and build bespoke systems to ensure our customer always receive the best equipment for their application”.


December 2021

KEY BENEFITS YOU CAN EXPECT FROM KELLY TANKS SYSTEMS: Designed to meet the rigours of the construction industry: • Fast and Simple to Set up • Small Footprint equipment available • Units can be linked to handle range of flows, pumps sizes & particle characteristics • Easy to Maintain and Monitor equipment • Reduce off-site disposal costs • Reduce risk of pollution • Easy to use equipment If you’d like to find out more information on Kelly Tanks’ full range of products, head to the website or get in touch using the contact details below. T 01889 508944


January 2022

MAGPLY A1 BOARDS SHEATH HYBRID ELEMENTS TO MODULAR HOTEL BUILD IN KENT The development of a 140 bed Hampton by Hilton Hotel in Ashford, Kent, is featuring the use of Magply A1 Euroclass non-combustible boards for sheathing vertical and horizontal sections around the six-storey modular volumetric structure, offering excellent strength and durability as well as Class O fire resistance and good acoustic properties. The project is being undertaken by Ashford based main contractor, Rees Mellish, while Bowman Riley was the architectural consultancy which gained the final planning consent and supervised work on site. The high performance Magply boards from IPP were supplied by the local branch of Jewson builders’ merchants. In order to optimise the build programme as well as the use of factory manufactured bedroom and other modular units, the final design made use of in-situ reinforced concrete elements as well as steel and timber framing for the parapet wall at roof level, both of which have been sheathed using Magply boards. Bowman Riley’s Associate responsible for the project: Roy Wilson, commented: “When we were brought in we revisited the planning application and gained consent for an extra storey, before completing the detailed design: including the cladding solution. The client has carried out a number of


value engineering exercises, leading to the use of traditional reinforced concrete infill between some of the modules, in order to reduce the number of different types across the project and then again at high level around the parapet there is steel framing.” The Project Manager for Rees Mellish, Mark Herridge , explained: “For the areas where the reinforced concrete frame separates the modules we needed a fire resistant board and therefore asked Jewson’s sales manager to recommend one. Fortunately, they had the Magply 12mm boards in stock which met all of the requirements and which our installers have found easy to cut and fix. As well as the vertical bands at several locations around the elevations, the boards are also used to cover the parapet wall which steps out just below the roof. It is secured to the steel and timberwork infill, while the ‘helping hand’ brackets for the cladding are then secured back through the boards. It’s a good product overall.”

Magply MgO boards, available in 9mm,12mm & 20mm thickness, it presents a fire-safe and environmentally friendly alternative to conventional plywood or OSB products. Additionally, the unique production process minimises chloride content, enhancing both stability and long-term durability. The different thicknesses of panel are also widely used as a substrate board for the direct application of proprietary render systems, as well as for flooring and flat or pitched roof build-ups. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT: GORDON PIRRET, MD or JOHN MALONE, UK NATIONAL SALES MANAGER IPP LTD. BRADWELL HALL BRADWELL ON SEA ESSEX CM0 7HX. T.01621 776252 F.01621776688 EMAIL: or

December 2021 Case Studies

MODULAR HOUSING INSTALLED OVER MARMOX THERMOBLOCK BREAKS AT SELBY A Yorkshire based groundworks and civil engineering specialist is making innovative use of Marmox Thermoblocks in constructing the oversites across a development of over 100 affordable homes which are being craned into position as factory fabricated modules. Alfa Site Services is experienced in working with all of the UK’s major housebuilders, as well as infrastructure specialists like Kier and has purchased 720 of the 600 x 100 x 65mm Thermoblocks from Encon Insulation of Leeds, with the merchant also supplying some 50 cartons of Marmox’s versatile highperformance 360 adhesive, used to bed the blocks and bond their overlapping joints. This well proven installation method helps achieve the accurate alignment and stability necessary for the modules to be craned into position. Alfa’s Senior Manager Site Services, Rick Harrison, commented: “The site was originally a railway siding, with the made-up ground requiring 2.5 metres deep foundations and then levels are being built up by a metre to deal with flood risk: leading us to lay three courses of blocks.

Installing the Thermoblocks using the 360 adhesive is quite time consuming, but it is basically a very good product and there have been no actual issues. Once the course of Thermoblocks is complete we hand over to the developer’s site management team to actually install the modules. This is a significant project involving a number of technical aspects which were new to us, but I think this could represent the way ahead for construction and we have been proud to be involved as the principal contractor.”

to ensure a good bond with the rest of the structure.

Marmox Thermoblocks are available in widths of 100, 140 or 215mm and are formed from sections of XPS (extruded polystyrene) encapsulating two rows of high strength, epoxy concrete mini-columns.


These are attached at either end to the top and bottom layers of glassfibre reinforced polymer concrete,

As well as combatting cold bridging where the inner leaf of masonry walls abuts the floor zone, Thermoblocks are also often utilised to support timber frame construction or at vulnerable upper floor junctions, including beneath parapet walls. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:

TEL: 01634 835290 FAX: 01634 835299 EMAIL: WEB:


January 2022

OFF-GAS IDYLL GETS SUSTAINABLE OMNIE AIR SOURCE AND UFH SOLUTION The traumas of lockdown have prompted a boom in the popularity of rural living, though the reality is that most ‘chocolate box’ country cottages lack contemporary comforts. However, this will not be a worry to the purchasers of two newbuild homes in the Cotswolds idyll of Long Compton: thanks to their highly insulated construction and a truly sustainable building services package supplied by sector specialist, OMNIE. Now known as Gold Stone, the pair of four-bedroom detached houses have been developed by local builder, DG Carpenter Ltd. on land adjoining an existing bungalow, fully reflecting the architectural heritage of the area through the use of coursed, reclaimed Cotswold limestone rather than reconstituted masonry. The stylish appearance continues throughout the homes’ living spaces where, as well as supplying plentiful hot water to the multiple bathrooms, high efficiency LG air source heat pumps will feed underfloor heating circuits to maintain temperatures during the area’s notoriously cold winters. The plumber from nearby Moretonin-Marsh, a past user of OMNIE products, carried out all of the installation work for the heating and hot water services. He explains: “I work right across Gloucestershire and the neighbouring counties, while I’ve had past experience of installing OMNIE underfloor heating: including on a large domestic build at Lower Swell, near Stow-on-the-Wold. “


“For DG Carpenter on the Gold Stone houses, they sourced the complete package through Jewson at Chipping Norton and I undertook the installation of the heat pumps, the underfloor heating and the controls, while Simon and Andy Carpenter fitted the Zehnder heat MVHR systems which will provide the ventilation in what are very airtight builds. Downstairs we installed the pipework over 100mm of Celotex

insulation using the Staple system, which is very quick. Then upstairs we switched to OMNIIE’s LowBoard panels which are just so easy to fit and look really neat when they’re done. While OMNIE provides all the layout drawings electronically as well as in printed format, I normally print them out at A3 and laminate them, to keep them clean and dry on site. It took approximately two days per floor to do the install on each house before a flooring specialist laid all the limestone and engineered oak.” Because they run so quietly, the outdoor units could be located close to each home’s back wall, where they will continue to harvest latest heat from the atmosphere even in sub-zero temperatures. The Cylinder and components have been fitted in ground floor plantrooms. As well as leaving the room interiors free of radiators, the OMNIE underfloor heating has the added benefit of keeping the heat pumps running efficiently over extended periods, which reduces

component wear. Together with the MVHR, this will also ensure the occupants of the Gold Stone properties will enjoy low energy bills while the heat pumps themselves carry 7-year warranty cover. “OMNIE was absolutely fine about it and the background heat did the job while once they’re occupied, the OMNIE room thermostats, as well as floor sensors in the bathrooms, will keep the system in perfect balance for the owners.” For further information on OMNIE’s underfloor heating renewables, ventilation and control products, please contact : OMNIE, 18 APPLE LANE, SIDMOUTH ROAD, EXETER, DEVON, EX2 5GL. TEL: 01392 363605 FAX: 01392 364871 EMAIL: WEB:

January 2022

Knauf continue to improve sustainability credentials with recycled plastic packaging As part of its ongoing sustainability efforts, Knauf UK & Ireland is making the move to recycled plastic packaging. Its new packaging will contain at least 30% recycled plastics and is often also recyclable at the end of its life so the circle can be continued.


he Company has added easy to recognise logos to the packaging to identify when it has been made from recycled plastic, and if it is recyclable. Knauf will start by changing the packaging of key products within its portfolio and continue the move for other products over the coming months. The Company is using Post-Consumer Recycled (PCR) plastics – materials which have been used by consumers, recycled and given a new life. Lucy Hall, Sustainability Leader for Knauf, gives an insight into the importance of the new packaging: “Our Product Manager, Becky Newell, has worked collaboratively and consistently to achieve Knauf’s goal of improving the recycled content of our packaging. Realising her goal to make a difference on a bigger scale, the recycled content of plastic packaging will now also be high on the agenda of new product development. This is a fantastic achievement in Knauf’s drive to fulfil its sustainability goals” Greenhouse gas emissions are associated with single-use plastics, and the National Geography Society estimates that more than 40% of plastic is used just once and that there are more than 5 trillion pieces of plastic in the ocean. This is a significant reason for Knauf adopting PCR plastics and a recognition of the Company’s commitment to Build for the World We Live In. This switch will see some small changes to the appearance of product packaging, such as a grey rim and base. This is simply due to a number of different coloured plastics being recycled to make a new product, and not adding in unnecessary dyes. It is important to note that it is just the packaging that is changing, not the product, so customers can rest assured knowing they’re still getting the same, trusted Knauf product.


This move is part of Knauf’s ongoing sustainability initiative and ties in with its ‘people, planet, prosperity’ ethos. Sustainability considerations are becoming more prevalent across the construction industry and Knauf is keen to lead the way in meeting customers’ expectations for environmentally friendly products.

January 2022

Predictions for 2022: What’s next for green plumbing and construction? As we near the end of what has been a challenging year, navigating the new normal brought on by Covid-19, 2022 will see greater normality as the industry learns to adapt to these challenges and move forward. clean air and little-to-no carbon emissions. Homeowners don’t want the houses of the past which have poor energy efficiency ratings and are built with single use materials – they seek sustainable solutions that conserve natural resources and give back to the environment. With sustainability in mind, what trends can we expect to emerge in plumbing and construction in 2022?

Growing popularity of heat pumps As the technology and affordability of low-carbon heating systems is anticipated to improve in coming years, they will become the obvious, affordable choice for consumers.


ith rapidly emerging technologies, products and changing industry attitudes, you can’t help but wonder what advances will be adopted throughout the industry as we move into the post-pandemic era of plumbing and construction. However, the future isn’t all about technology and the digitisation of the industry - sustainability and green building practices are also increasingly gaining visibility as people are becoming more environmentally conscious.


Consumers now want green infrastructure in their homes, shopping centres, and office buildings. They want places with

Following the government’s recent heat pump grant announcement which will see homeowners offered subsidies of £5,000 to make the switch from gas boilers to lowcarbon heat pumps – we will see a heightened public awareness around sustainable heating and hot water provision in 2022. The move towards heat pumps is a great way to lower CO2 emissions from the housing sector - currently responsible for c. 15% of UK overall greenhouse emissions – by swapping gas to capturing heat from the air outside or underground and using it to heat a building. Unlike more conventionally used heating systems, these pumps provide renewable heating that don’t emit carbon into the atmosphere.

What’s more, many heat pumps rely on copper pipes in order to improve efficiency and safety, meaning that less sustainable materials such as plastic pipes are likely to be phased out. For example, copper is a superior conductor of heat so can withstand large variations in temperature without expansion or contraction issues. Furthermore, copper is also a safer product to install within a house as its melting point is over 1,000 degrees Celsius so, unlike plastic, it doesn’t burn or give off harmful gases in a fire. Flow rate and pressure drops must also be considered when choosing which pipe to use in heat pumps. As well as having serious environmental problems, plastic pipes have a bore size which is considerably smaller than copper and a smaller internal area, which has a dramatic effect on flow characteristics. If installers select plastic pipe instead of copper without checking the size correctly, this could have a negative effect on the heat pump’s performance. The use of copper pipes in heat pumps not only improves their efficiency, but also their water safety. As heat pumps operate at lower temperatures than gas boilers, stored water may only be heated to around 50 degrees Celsius. This is often fine for household use, but it can pose a risk of Legionella build-up. However, using copper pipe would mitigate this risk due to its natural anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties. Additionally, thanks to

January 2022 its unique thermal properties, copper water systems can safely withstand thermal shocking at 70 degrees Celsius to effectively kill waterborne bacteria, such as legionella pneumophila.

research into the world’s copper resources and discovered there are approximately 5.6 billion metric tons in circulation – a figure more than sufficient to surpass both current and future demand.

A re-evaluation of construction materials

What’s more, around half of Europe’s copper demand and 30% of global demand is currently being met by recycled materials and, as recycling technologies improve, this figure will only continue to increase. Old copper is simply recovered, melted, and cast into new products, rather than ending up in landfill or in the sea like materials such as plastic do.

As the world becomes more environmentally conscious, it will also become increasingly more important to balance the need for new housing while ensuring the housing stock developed comes from materials which don’t compromise the lives of future generations. To make sure the homes of the future meet our needs without depleting our natural resources or causing damage to the environment, the plumbing and construction industries will have no choice but to reconsider the materials they use. Many plumbers and builders have turned to plastic over the years due to its affordability, and its popularity has also increased as a result of the plastics industry downplaying its environmental impact. But, while it’s true that plastic provides a cheaper alternative to metal, its recyclability has been greatly exaggerated and there are in fact a number of serious environmental problems to this solution. Since its invention six decades ago, plastic use has grown exponentially and resulted in over 8.3 billion metric tons of various plastics. As reported by the Resource Efficiency Collective, in the region of eight million tons of plastic waste enters the sea every year, which is more than twice the annual consumption of plastics in the UK. Furthermore, according to National Geographic, 91% of all plastics produced in the world have not been recycled. Concerningly, the plumbing and construction industries play a big part in this. According to the Department of Environment Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA), construction, demolition and excavation generated around three fifths (62%) of total UK waste in 2018 and, with many contractors opting to use non-recyclable plastic, the majority of this waste ends up being incinerated, landfilled, or exported. It is clear that plastics do not form part of a natural environmental lifecycle. To ensure we create homes fit for the future, we must consider how we can eliminate single use plastics behind our walls and under our floors and replace them with infinitely recyclable or biodegradable alternatives.

Increased focus on recyclability

Copper is ready for a future where people need to get more from fewer, more ethically and sustainably sourced materials, making our homes and way of living more environmentally friendly. It is a material that supports the environment and, born from nature, it will help support more sustainable living. Sustainability should be high on the agenda of anyone working in the construction industry. So, as us construction professionals look to the year ahead and think about how we can improve the sustainability not only of our businesses, but also the industry as a whole, we should perhaps make it our mission to make the shift to more environmentally friendly, recyclable materials, svuch as copper.

Will you be making this commitment in 2022?

In order to create a future that isn’t reliant on finite resources, we need to move away from plastic and look at recyclable materials which can offer far more for the environment and the people it serves, without limiting the progress of innovation. Copper, for example, has the unique ability to be recycled over and over again without any loss in performance or properties. The US Geological Survey recently conducted


CONSTRUCTION UPDATE Recommended Suppliers


We design and supply bags and cradles globally that secure non-standard loads ready for lifting to height using winches and cranes. 0114 3241224

Techtronic Industries EMEA, 1st Floor, Unit 3 Globeside, Fieldhouse Lane, Marlow, Buckinghamshire, SL7 1HZ

PafBag Limited, Unit C14, Alison Business Centre, Alison Crescent, Sheffield, S2 1AS, United Kingdom

We are the UK’s trusted Japanese knotweed treatment and remediation company with a proven track record in working successfully for local authorities, developers, construction companies and private landowners.

At ENGEL Workwear, we value being able to provide good advice and sparring to our customers and end users, which is why we constantly raise the bar for ourselves when it comes to product quality, innovation, creativity, flexibility and environmental awareness. T: 0333 2414 413

Mitsubishi Electric has introduced high quality products and innovative technologies into the UK for more than 35 years. (+45) 74 22 35 15 Norgesvej 12, 6100 Haderslev, Denmark are market leaders in the installation of resin bound driveways in the UK with over 18 years experience in the industry. 07920 100 222 Unit 9, Churchfields Industrial Estate, Rye Harbour Road, Rye Harbour, East Sussex, TN31 7TE

Health & Safety Update | JANUARY 2022

Industry News - Safety & Security - PPE - Tools & Equipment

WELCOME January 2022


Health & Safety Update | JANUARY 2022

Industry News - Safety & Security - PPE - Tools & Equipment






Solid Gear


SNICKERS WORKWEAR CLIMATE CONTROL BASELAYER UNDERWEAR The Snickers Workwear Baselayer clothing for professional tradesmen and women uses hightech breathable fabrics for ventilation and body moisture transport for sustainable warmth and comfort.

Dressing for the cold is like building a house – start with a good foundation.

The Base-, Mid- and Toplayer clothing combines to keep you working dry, warm and comfortable wherever you are on site. With sustainability at the forefront of Snickers Workwear’s clothing philosophy, garments are available in recycled polyester and merino wool as well as the 37.5® technology ventilating fabric to suit different types of work in a variety of cold and wet weather conditions. The cutting-edge AllroundWork, FLEXIWork and LITEwork designs and fabrics will keep you warm and dry - so you won’t get cold, wet and shiver. All the garments are made from quick drying, fabrics that come with special ventilation features to control and regulate the heat from your body. All in all, Snickers Workwear Baselayer clothing will give you the kind of warm, dry and fresh working comfort you wouldn’t have thought possible. That’s why Snickers Workwear is the brand of choice for working outside in the winter. So, to make sure you get the right protection, visibility, flexibility, durability and ventilation, check out the Climate Control garments from Snickers Workwear that work together to suit your workday.

For more information on Snickers Workwear’s sustainability philosophy and it’s Climate Control garments you can call the Helpline on 01484 854788; check out or email


DESIGNED FOR PERFORMANCE – THE REVOLUTION 2 GTX SAFETY TRAINER Solid Gear’s fastest safety shoe is designed for performance and safety to keep you going for longer at work.

The GTX’s hi-tech, lightweight construction is a giant leap forward from the look and feel of ordinary safety shoes. It combines a high-performance blend of ergonomic design, athletic comfort and S3 protection. The waterproof GORE-TEX® upper delivers constant dryness while the locking drawstring ensures the shoe

fits like a glove. Combined with its E-TPU midsole and the ‘bounce back’ technology, foot and knee fatigue after a hard day’s work could be a thing of the past. The New Revolution 2 GTX is more than just a marketleading safety trainer, it’s a workmate that will keep your feet fresh, safe and dry – all day long. So get to

know more about the quality, innovation and top class safety functionality in every Solid Gear product – your feet will notice the difference. To get more information on Solid Gear Safety Footwear, check out; you can call the Helpline on 01484 854788 or email

© 2019 - Petzl Distribution - Rémi Flament - SAS Michel Besson

PETZL LIGHTING SOLUTIONS When the specialists from the SAS Michel Besson Company dig underground galleries, they know they can count on Petzl’s advanced headlamp technology to provide lighting that is best adapted to their work.

The Petzl headlamp range covers the full spectrum of professional needs, from intensive to occasional use, and for different work environments that require varying degrees of brightness.


High Vis ‘Super Stretch’ Comfort From Engel Workwear A new range of high visibility, flexible workwear which stretches to follow the movements of the body giving maximum comfort in any work situation has been introduced by Danish workwear specialists ENGEL. Called ‘Safety - Super-Stretch’ the collection consists of a wide variety of garments with elastic fibres woven into a polyester and cotton mix; the strong yet extreme flexibility of the material allows each garment to return to its original shape thereby retaining all the inherent advantages of their design and style. Comfort as much as durable practicality is important to any wearer as not only does the high visibility workwear provide protection throughout the day or night, it helps reduce tiredness, further minimising the risk of accidents. The ‘Super-Stretch’ collection, which includes high-vis ‘Safety’ work jackets, trousers, shorts and bib-overalls is also being offered during 2021 in an Environmentally friendly, ‘Sustainable-Safety’ version

which incorporates 50% regenerated polyester fibres made from recycled plastic bottles; This method of yarn production with the brand name of ‘REPREVE©’ has been developed by Unifi, one of the world’s most advanced recycling centres; waterproofs, T-shirts, sweatshirts and a zipped hoodie using the same material are also due to be added. For more details contact Gareth Bladen at Telephone +44 (0) 7759 520034 or visit & ENGEL Workwear - Catalogue ( Click here for more information.

Engel Workwear Experts in Textile Solutions

For more details contact Gareth Bladen at Telephone +44 (0) 7759 520034 or visit & ENGEL Workwear - Catalogue ( Click here for more information.


“Equipped with comfortable temple arms for ease of wear”

MILWAUKEE ® enhances jobsite safety with expansion of Safety Glasses Range Milwaukee’s Safety Glasses range looks to increase safety onsite with new Anti-Scratch, Fog-free and New Lens coloured features. Milwaukee ® has once again proven its commitment to ensuring safety and productivity for workers onsite with an expansion of its Safety Glasses product range. Featuring anti-scratch, fog free, new lens colours and new magnification features, all new Safety Glasses are built for extended wear that doesn’t compromise on comfort. Equipped with comfortable temple arms for ease of wear, all new glasses (aside from the magnifying safety glasses) are available with yellow, grey or tinted lens options. This superior safety enhancement is ideal for users who need glasses that are optimised to their specific working environment.

Milwaukee Performance Safety Glasses are equipped with fog-free lenses to ensure that users’ vision stays unobstructed on the jobsite. As a step up in productivity and durability, the Performance Safety Glasses feature anti-scratch lenses to them from challenging conditions onsite. The Performance Safety Glasses will now be available in yellow and grey lenses, in addition of the clear and tinted ones already available. Grey lenses provide a brightness protection, they let a minimal amount of light passing through the lenses to provide the users good visibility while being protected from the sun. They are also ideal inside to reduce the intensity of indoor lights.


Yellow lenses absorb the blue light, which can be harmful to the users, they absorb the UV rays from the blue light. This is ideal for workers indoor in a warehouse, with industrial lighting or with monitors. Yellow lenses will provide them a clear vision while being protected from the blue light and offer more contrast. Enhanced safety glasses feature a flexible nose bridge to add extra support for the wearer and a better fit over respirators. They will also now be available with clear lenses or grey or yellow tinted lenses. For easy reading and clarity on the jobsite, the Anti-Scratch Magnifying Safety Glasses have an anti-scratch hard coat for lens protection and clear magnified lenses which allow users to read easily without sacrificing protection. The lenses are available in magnifications between +1.00 and +2.50 diopter. This extended PPE range is proof of Milwaukee’s focus on creating innovative solutions that won’t slow users down, helping them STAY SAFE. STAY PRODUCTIVE ™ For more information of Milwaukee Personal Safety or to view the entire range, please visit


MAN SENTENCED FOR FAILURE TO KEEP CHEMICALS SAFELY A man has been sentenced to two counts of failure to comply with the keeping of chemicals health and safety regulation, as well as four counts of failure to comply with firearm licenses. He was given a 12-month community order and must carry out 80 hours of unpaid work. Shane Leech, 33, pleaded guilty to these offences. On 15 September 2020, a report was made by a member of the public to Natural England of a dead buzzard and pigeon near Lakenheath, Suffolk. The birds were collected and sent for forensic testing and results showed that the partially plucked pigeon had Bendiocarb residue, a highly toxic chemical to be used against insects, on its body. The buzzard had Bendiocarb residue in its stomach and it is likely that the buzzard died after eating the pigeon carcass. There was insufficient evidence to prove Mr Leech was the one who put out poisoned bait or killed the buzzard. A search of Leech’s home on the 18 January 2021 found two 3kg containers of Bendiocarb. In a search of an outbuilding on Leech’s property around thirty dead pheasants were laying on the floor of the building. There were no health and safety warnings stating that insecticide chemicals were being stored anywhere on Leech’s property.

Furthermore, the search also showed that Leech had two shotguns in an unlocked room. Suffolk Police reported the case to the CPS who then undertook a review of evidence and authorized charges against Leech for breaches of health and safety and firearm licenses. Ashley Petchey, of the CPS, said: “Shane Leech showed no responsibility for his actions. This case demonstrates the need to store chemicals securely and safely as failing to do so can have tragic circumstances, especially for wildlife in the countryside. “Leech also failed to store two shotguns and ammunition properly, which could have endangered people’s lives. We will always work with the police to prosecute those who are endangering wildlife and our countryside.” Leech was sentenced on 8 November 2021 at Ipswich Magistrates Court for two counts of failure to comply with a health and safety regulation and four counts of failing to comply with firearm licenses Leech was sentenced to 12-month community order with 80 hours unpaid work, £105 in legal costs and £95 Victim Surcharge. Leech also had to forfeit the stored chemicals.




MS Properties (Northern) Ltd have been fined for safety breaches after employees were exposed to asbestos on 22 March 2019 after removing false ceiling tiles during a shop conversion at 309-315 Hessle Road, Hull. Beverley Magistrates’ Court heard that the company had not commissioned a refurbishment asbestos survey prior to the work commencing. Employees removed over 1000m2 of asbestos insulation board (AIB) ceiling tiles in an uncontrolled manner, exposing them to asbestos. The HSE’s investigation found that the company’s director, and the casual labourers they employed, spent approximately three to four weeks removing the suspended ceiling, along with the ceiling tiles which contained asbestos, to install new stud walls to divide the shop floor into separate units. The labourers were unskilled and untrained. They were provided with a claw hammer to knock the tiles down. The asbestos-containing tile debris was then shovelled or collected into approximately 62 one tonne bags. MS Properties (Northern) Limited of Beckside Business, Beckside Road, Bradford, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 5 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012. The company has been fined £16,000, ordered to pay £3,011.87 in costs and a victim surcharge of £190. After the hearing, HSE Inspector Trisha Elvy commented: “If the company had identified any asbestos on the site through a refurbishment asbestos survey, carried out by a competent surveyor, and had it removed by licenced asbestos removal contractors prior to the refurbishment work commencing, then MS Properties (Northern) employees would not have been exposed to asbestos. “No matter how small or large your company, there is a need to prevent exposing your employees and the public to asbestos by ensuring that it is identified on site prior to any work commencing.”


AMEY RAIL FINED £600,000 FOR HEALTH AND SAFETY FAILINGS A rail infrastructure and engineering company, carrying out modifications to the track layout during the reconstruction of Market Harborough station, has been fined £600,000 for health and safety breaches. Rail regulator, the Office of Rail and Road, brought the prosecution under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 for failure to ensure lifting operations involving lifting equipment were properly planned, supervised, and carried out in a safe manner. Amey Rail Limited pleaded guilty to the offence. The company was sentenced at Leicester Magistrates’ Court. ORR’s prosecution follows an investigation into an incident in the early hours of 21 October 2018 outside Market Harborough station on the Midland Main Line, when a road-rail excavator vehicle overturned during an unsafe lift. The vehicle’s operator had to be pulled from the cab, and fortunately, despite several other rail workers being in the area of the overturning, no one was seriously injured. ORR’s investigation into the incident found there was a late change in the equipment being used on the night of the accident, which had inadequate lifting capacity for the planned works. To overcome this, it was established that the length of the track to be lifted would need to be reduced from 30 to 20 feet. This critical change was not managed or communicated correctly and resulted in the track panels being cut to the original length of 30 feet – exceeding the capacity for the excavators to be used. When lifting started, the on-board safety systems on the excavators showed that the weight being lifted was exceeding what excavators could safely handle. ORR

found in its investigation that these warnings were ignored, and the safety systems were disabled to enable the work to continue. ORR also found that radio-based communication system between the operators and the lifting supervisor developed a defect. Despite replacement equipment being available on site, work continued with the inadequate communications equipment. These failures led to one of the two excavators becoming overloaded beyond its capacity and toppling onto its side, trapping a worker in the cab, when undertaking a tandem lift of a track panel later established to be 39ft long. Several members of the lifting team and others in the nearby vicinity kicked through the toughened glass windscreen to drag a worker clear of the cab. ORR’s HM Chief Inspector of Railways Ian Prosser CBE, said: “The risks of failing to comply with the lifting regulations are well known throughout the industry and clearly foreseeable. In this case basic errors were made and it is by sheer luck that no one was seriously hurt. “None of these failures to follow well established procedures, nor the isolation of safety systems on the excavators, were identified despite the presence of two senior members of staff on site during the night to manage the work. “This meant Amey failed to take measures in order to adequately manage the risks presented when tandem lifting loads of the size and weight of those undertaken on 21 October 2018.”

Are you looking to keep your OSH knowledge and skills up-to-date?

Our Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses will help you do just that. Covering a variety of areas, they will give you the tools and resources to ensure you learn, develop and exceed in your career. Search for ‘CPD courses’ at and keep yourself updated


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Industry News - Safety & Security - PPE - Tools & Equipment