Construction Update - April 2024

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Construction Update CONSTRUCTION - ARCHITECTURE - DEVELOPMENT APRIL 2024 ‘The Cones’ bring Highways Safety and the Automated Cone Laying Machine to life for Children on World Book Day 020 805 09659 | SterlingOSB Zero PrimedPlus selected for cathedral contract The Anatomy of Sustainable Workwear [click here]




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Construction Update 3 6 Contents The Anatomy of Sustainable Workwear Another resounding success at the Workspace Design Show 2024 Caldwell Celebrates 70 Years 14 22 SterlingOSB Zero PrimedPlus selected for cathedral contract 26 APRIL 2024 To feature in the next edition of Construction Update. Call 020 805 09659 or email

West Fraser’s CaberMDF is perfect all around the house

The original CaberMDF was developed in the 1960’s. Still as popular today and manufactured by West Fraser UK in Scotland, the highly engineered product can be seen all over the modern building, from furniture to architectural mouldings, and from radiator cabinets to kitchens. When it comes to consistency, quality and ease of use, West Fraser’s CaberMDF leads the way with legendary performance and popularity.

The board is designed as an economical and versatile alternative to hardwood – without the inherent defects of knots or grains. The product’s attributes include stability and consistent density, while the panels have a high-quality surface, are strong, resist impact and accept fasteners securely. The panels are easy to work with and have good machining properties. They can be sawn, drilled, shaped and routed cleanly with minimum fuss, using hand or machine tools. When it comes to appearance, quality finishes are easily achieved by both professionals and DIY-ers, and the smooth surface of the panels is ideal for painting or applying veneers or paper foils.

The panels can be used to form architectural features, fascias, skirting, shelves, fitted units, wardrobes and kitchen and bathroom furniture including door and drawer fronts as well as carcassing. They can also be used to create individual items of furniture.

West Fraser’s comprehensive five-strong CaberMDF range has been developed to offer the perfect matches between panel and application. For general use,  CaberMDF Trade  is a versatile,

lightweight board which is ideal where weight is a factor; the panels hold screws and fastenings securely.  CaberMDF Trade MR  offers the same benefits with the added advantage of moisture resistance for wet or humid environments. Where there is a need for premium quality and detailed working,  CaberMDF Pro provides incredibly consistent density, ensuring cutting and routing need minimal finishing. CaberMDF Pro MR offers the further benefit of moisture resistance. The ultimate product in the range is  CaberMDF Industrial  which is moisture resistant and designed specifically for the production of high-grade furniture and fittings. It is ideal for deep routing and its consistent closegrained texture ensures clean edges and surfaces that will take advanced finishing techniques.

Beyond the advantages and practicalities of using CaberMDF, the materials and processes used to manufacture the product offer the reassurance of being sustainable. West Fraser’s range of board products is available in a wide selection of sizes to minimise waste. All timber used is responsibly sourced and FSC-certified. The panels are manufactured in the UK from locally grown timber and are net carbon negative.

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Samples of all West Fraser construction panels can be ordered on the website

Head to the housebuilder page on the website to download a selection of tools including a fully-interactive guide to all West Fraser products and a checklist to make sure you have everything you need for your build.

For further information, call 01786 812 921 or visit

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Another resounding success, Show 2024, held at the Business February 27th to 28th, yet acclaim.

Now a firmly established part of the global workplace event calendar, Workspace Design Show made a triumphant return to London at the end of February with a record number of visitors, breathtaking features and an events programme across the two days that really packed a punch.

Over 4,500 workplace professionals from over 40 countries around the world congregated at the Business Design Centre between 27-28 February, taking in the latest trends in office specification from furniture, lighting, flooring and more, totalling over 500 different products.

Given the exceptional lineup of speakers, it came as no surprise that the talks were immensely popular. The beautiful stage, designed by Gensler, was packed out from start to finish, buzzing with architects, designers and workplace professionals, eager to hear

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success, the Workspace Design Business Design Centre from yet again gathered widespread

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from industry leaders. Day one in the Workspace Design Talks kicked off with an insightful talk on ‘Insights and perspectives on the convergent future of workplace’ with panellists Yasmin Al-Ani Spence, Director, WilkinsonEyre, Ewan Jones, Partner, Grimshaw and Nicola Gillen, Head of Total Workplace EMEA, Cushman & Wakefield. Other key workplace leaders sharing their insights on workplace strategy, design & culture across the two days were Helen Berresford, Head of ID:SR Sheppard Robson, Alan Bainbridge, Director of Workplace BBC, Sarah-Jane Osbourne, Head of Workplace UK and Europe, Avison Young, Linzi Cassels, Principal Design Director, Perkins&Will, Laurie Goodman, Strategy Director, IA Interior Architects, Neil Usher, VP Places, Sage, Naomi Sakamoto, Principal Studio Director, Gensler, Mary-Louise Gray, VP Workplace, Real Estate & Facilities, GSK.

Sustainability Works, curated by Mick Jordan, Editor of Works magazine, returned for 2024 and did not disappoint. Once again, the talks brought together a selection of key figures from firms such as Perkins&Will, Scott Brownrigg, BDG architecture and design, M Moser Associates, BDP and Resonate Interiors who are behind the workplace market’s leading sustainable initiatives and projects.

Pernille Bonser, CEO of Resonate Interiors said, “Workspace Design Show is not only the perfect place for discovering new products, but also brings designers and architects together. It’s about meeting and connecting with friends in the same community, these shared conversations are so important “

The Occupiers Forum, provided unique insights from occupiers such as BT Group, HSBC, Clifford Chance,, Visa, Salesforce, HMRC, and Barclays into what employers are doing to create an engaging workplace experience. The FIS Conference explored productivity, quality, compliance and sustainability issues in the fit-out sector.

Mario Vieira, Scott Brownrigg, Head of Sustainability, commented, “The Workspace Design Show showcases all the upcoming innovative products and trends. In my role and practice, I aim to assist our teams by giving advice, this show allow us to gauge a much stronger understanding of the market, making that a lot easier.”

2024 had a vast array of spectacular features, inspired by the overarching show theme ‘Bloom – Exploring the Thriving Ecosystem of Work Life’. Captivating stages included the Design Talks Lounge by Gensler and the Insights Lounge by BDP, and other features included the immersive Entrance by tp bennett, a Living Workplace lighting installation by Jason Bruges Studio, the Mood Board Contest by MF Design Studio, and the calming Recharge Lounge by M Moser Associates. The show’s stunning exhibition floor hosted exhibitors from over 20 countries, and it was wonderful to see some of the stunning stand designs showcasing the products. The best stand design competition was won by Spain’s Kettal and the UK’s AllSfär, judged by a panel of leading specifiers.

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As day one came to a close, the Workspace Design Show party commenced. The buzzing atmosphere allowed people to socialise and network over a glass of wine, transforming the venue into a vibrant hub of creativity and connection.

Esha & Charlie Bark-Jones, Workspace Design Show founders, said “We’re absolutely thrilled that so many of the UK’s workplace interiors community came together to experience the fantastic speakers sharing their insights, transformative products from our exhibitors and stunning features experiences from our partners. We are delighted to see specifiers from Asia, The Americas, The Middle East, Africa and Europe also attending to join the celebration of the future of work in London. The spirit of collaboration at the Show was evident for all to see, as people formed partnerships to transform the employee experience in these disruptive times for workplaces.”

The next UK edition will be on 26th – 27th February 2025. The Amsterdam edition of Workspace Design Show takes place on 5th – 6th November 2025.

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‘The Cones’ bring Highways Safety Cone Laying Machine to life for

Leading highways industry players Balfour Beatty, Connect Plus, Connect Plus Services and Highway Care have helped to create a compelling narrative of road safety and innovation with the World Book Day launch of ‘The Cones and The Cone Laying Machine’; a children’s storybook by Chris Madeley.

The four companies have worked in collaboration with The Cone Book team to create the 20th book in the Cone Book series; a fun and educational initiative that helps children learn about safety and the construction industry with captivating stories. Illustrated by Emily Vaughan, the story features a collection of cone characters and is based on the Falcon automated cone laying machine (ACLM); a first-of-its-kind machine developed by Highway Care and deployed by Connect Plus and Connect Plus Services as part of their operation and maintenance of the M25 network.

The decision to launch the book on World Book Day, March 7, was driven by a passion shared by all four companies to make the book accessible to as many young readers as possible by donating the book to children in schools. According to a World Book

Day study, for 28 per cent of 8 to 11 year-olds who receive free school meals, the book ‘bought’ with a World Book Day token is the first they own. And, in 2017, the National Literacy Trust found that one in 9.4 per cent of children and young people did not have a book of their own at home, a statistic that rose to 13.1 percent amongst children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

For this year’s World Book Day, ‘The Cones and The Cone Laying Machine’ was a treat for its first young readers at five primary schools across the UK, located in areas close to the four stakeholder organisations’ operations. Representatives from each company visited pupils to read the books with them, hand out free copies and deliver engaging talks about the machines featured in the book.

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Safety and the Automated for Children on World Book Day

Andy Dean, CEO of Connect Plus, explained: “Encouraging the next generation of road users and potential road workers to understand the need for safety and innovation in road maintenance is an important goal for all parties involved. We are delighted that the ACLM is the inspiration for the latest Cone Book, and that we have been able to engage so many children with the story, and hand out free copies to several local schools.”

The Cones and The Cone Laying Machine’ breaks new ground in children’s literature, combining storytelling with safety education to highlight the power of innovation to make roadworks safer. With a

commitment to inclusivity, the book transcends cultural, racial, and religious boundaries, delivering a unique narrative designed to spark curiosity in young minds.

Geri Straine, Sustainability Director of Balfour Beatty’s Transport, Energy, Power and Major Projects, said:

“For many years, we have actively sought to engage the future generation of engineers and construction professionals. The launch of the ‘The Cones and The Cone Laying Machine’ storybook is another great example of how we can engage and inspire school children in both an educational and entertaining way about the importance of road safety, and excite them about the opportunities available in the construction and infrastructure industry. As the book hits the virtual shelves, we celebrate not just a storybook but a testament to the power of collaboration, innovation, and commitment to education across the industry.”

An immersive journey into the world of road safety, ‘The Cones and The Cone Laying Machine’ features animated cone characters, whose adventures introduce primary school-aged children to the intricacies of innovation, automation, and engineering design. The cone characters learn all about the ACLM, as well as exploring the delights of engineering through the introduction of Spot the robot dog and drones.

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At its core, ‘The Cones and The Cone Laying Machine’ aims to inspire young minds to consider careers in the highways sector,” adds Hayley Terrell, Head of Communications and Marketing at Highway Care. “By presenting animated cones navigating realworld challenges, the book seeks to instil a sense of innovation and out-of-the-box thinking in the next generation and we’re certain it will not only engage them in the story but will also spark their curiosity as they spot road works while travelling.”

For those eager to support the initiative, ‘The Cones and The Cone Laying Machine’ will be available for purchase on major online platforms, including Amazon, and corporate buyers seeking bulk rates are encouraged to connect directly with The Cone Books. Notably, the book will not be available in digital format, emphasising the goal of providing a tangible connection for children with reading and the book in their hands.

“As ‘The Cones and The Cone Laying Machine’ hits the shelves, we celebrate not just a book, but a testament to the power of collaboration, innovation, and commitment to education,” Dave Neal, Connect Plus Services’ Managing Director adds. “We hope teachers, parents, children and organisations involved in the highways sector will join us in making this release a success and inspiring the next generation of contributors to the highways industry.”

Find out more at:

For more information about Highway Care, visit

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After undergoing the rigorous re-approval process by the regulatory body Construction Industry Council Approved Inspectors Register (CICAIR), which commenced in 2022, Harwood is delighted to announce its successful completion of the comprehensive CICAIR auditing process.

This achievement underscores our steadfast commitment to maintaining professional excellence and unwavering high standards.

This license will be valid until 6th April 2024, when CICAIR’s role as regulator of private sector building control will cease as part of the transition to the new regulatory regime, and we will become a Registered Building Control Approver (RBCA) under the Building Safety Regulator (BSR).

David Woodward, Harwood CEO, comments:

“We are obviously delighted with our reapproval and now are fully committed to the transition to the new regulatory regime for Building Control from 6th April 2024. Notwithstanding this, on behalf of the Harwood Board of Directors and all its employees, I would like to thank the CICAIR team for their constant commitment to raising the standards within Building Control, professionalism and the continued support they have provided to the Approved Inspector community throughout the years.

Our industry is highly regulated, and rightly so. As Approved Inspectors (AIs), we should expect to be regularly audited to ensure that we meet the requirements of the relevant legislation and that we can demonstrate high levels of service and competency. We have completed our application with the Building Safety Regulator (BSR) to register as a Building Control Approver (RBCA) and will continue to uphold the high standards we are known for as the new regime comes into effect.”

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The Anatomy of Sustainable Workwear

Ben Stacey, Snickers Workwear Product Specialist writes:

With the global economy producing over a 100 billion garments a year1, it’s little wonder the clothing industry has had such a debilitating effect on the environment for so long. Experts estimate that the industry’s climate impact ranges from 4% to 10% of overall global carbon emissions2, so there’s no getting away from the fact that it has been a major contributor to climate change and biodiversity loss through production processes and the use of fossilbased synthetics. That’s why the sustainability efforts of clothing manufacturers and their supply chains are crucial to our planet’s wellbeing.

While consumers are increasingly demanding an emphasis on sustainability from fashion brands, short-life throwaway clothing is very much under the environmental spotlight. The retail clothing industry is becoming increasingly immersed in the effects on our climate through the actions of high-intensity fashion buyers and the leading workwear manufacturers are also focussing on the problems caused by poor quality, eco-unfriendly workwear. Poor quality fabrics produce a short lifecycle with these garments heading for landfill rather than being part of the drive towards circular business models and climate-friendly user satisfaction.

Mintel’s report on the Sustainable Fashion Market Outlook has observed that the cost of living crisis has played a part in helping consumers adopt more sustainable buying choices. Inflationary pressures have led people to buy fewer clothing items, shopping less frequently as well as choosing more durable, better quality pieces. As a result, 52% of consumers claim that rising prices have made them more aware of sustainable clothing, while sales of pre-loved clothing3 in charity outlets and through online retailers are increasing.

1 British Vogue, 16 Things everyone should know about sustainable fashion, ,(Accessed 21st February 2024). 2 Kenneth P Pucker, The Myth of Sustainable Fashion, , (Accessed 21st February 2024).


When it comes to workwear however, pre-loved Jackets and Work Trousers are not always an option, thus well-informed, sustainable buying choices by individuals and businesses alike are increasingly important.

What is sustainable clothing? In short, it’s a catch-all term for clothes that are manufactured in a way that can be ‘sustained’. That is, by using processes which safeguard not only the environment but also those people that work in the manufacturing industries.

Says British Vogue, ‘That’s why cutting CO2 emissions, addressing overproduction, reducing pollution and

waste, supporting biodiversity, and ensuring that garment workers are paid a fair wage and have safe working conditions, are all crucial to the sustainability matrix’4.

‘Buy less and buy better’ are its watchwords. Which is why Eco-Age’s chief strategy officer Harriet Vocking advises that before making a purchase, you ask yourself three all-important questions: ‘What are you buying and why? What do you really need? Will you wear it at least 30 times?’5

3 Mintel, UK Fashion and UK market Sustainability Report, , (Accessed 21st February 2024). 4 British Vogue, 16 Things everyone should know about sustainable fashion, , (Accessed 21st February 2024). 5 British Vogue, 16 Things everyone should know about sustainable fashion, , (Accessed 21st February 2024).

Multiple use workwear pieces should therefore rely on durable good quality fabrics to ensure a sustainable lifecycle. While durability has always been part of the Snickers Workwear DNA, refinements in its fabric technologies are now at the heart of the brand’s sustainability philosophy. In essence, the brand believes that the longer Snickers Workwear clothing lasts, the less environmental impact it has.

This fundamental insight has become the cornerstone of the brand’s sustainability efforts to uphold both social and environmental accountability6, while the less durable, poorer quality clothing peddled by other brands in the name of ‘value’ continues to contribute to our climate issues.

Committed to the UN Paris Agreement7, Snickers Workwear’s sustainability planning is focussed on continuous improvement in two key areas – Materials Technology; Standards and Targets.

The brand makes no apologies for using the highest quality materials in ensuring its clothing lasts as long as possible. Its policy is to replace conventional fabrics with better and more sustainable alternatives to reduce its environmental footprint. The brand is replacing conventional materials with more sustainable alternatives such as Preferred Fibres8 like REPREVE® and SORONA®9 .

As well as recycling man-made nylon and polyester fabrics to create new Preferred Fibres as well as supporting the ‘Better Cotton initiative’ to improve cotton farming globally.10

Snickers Workwear is committed to sourcing 40% of all garment fibres as Preferred Fibres by 2023, and as much as 70% by 2030. Business decision making is based on established methods and standards, calculating company emissions using the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol11, while ongoing Life Cycle Assessments on every product help identify areas of improvement.

Durability Means Sustainability.
6 Snickers Workwear, Durability means sustainability, , (Accessed 18th February 2024). 7 The Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 Parties at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP21). United Nations Climate Change, The Paris Agreement, process-and-meetings/the-paris-agreement, (Accessed 15th February 2024). 8 A ‘Preferred fibre’ is defined as fibres with documented improved environmental and/or social sustainability outcomes and impacts compared to conventional production. , 9 Hultafors Group, Sustainability Report 2022,, 42.
means sustainability
longer our clothes last, the less impact they have.

As part of the Hultafors Group, corporate climate targets have been set in line with the 1.5°C pathway of the Paris Agreement and high standards have been implemented for the brand’s supply chain to ensure that every single item of Snickers Workwear clothing is produced responsibly. Partners and suppliers are carefully selected, and each must have processes in place for environmental due diligence and transparency.

Suppliers are required to adhere to the group’s Code of Conduct (CoC). 12 It’s based on accepted international standards to ensure fair, safe, and healthy working conditions, as well as maintaining eco responsibility responsibility across its entire business network. It therefore fosters cooperation with a single purpose in a rapidly changing environmental landscape - gaining new insights, sharing learnings, and encouraging the industry as a whole to commit to the pathway of the Paris Agreement to creating positive energy in sustaining a better world for all.

The DNA of Sustainable Snickers Workwear Work Trousers

Margarita Kleinhofa, Senior Product Developer at Snickers Workwear outlines how one of its most iconic products – the FlexiWork Work Trousers – are made for long-lasting durability.

The physical makeup of sustainable Work Trousers benefits from processes of continuous improvement at Snickers Workwear with a focus on fabric durability to ensure it is maximising product performance, user satisfaction and a sustainable product lifecycle.

In just one pair of long-lasting FlexiWork Trousers there are 64 individual pieces of fabric from 6 different types, plus 46 additional components like buttons, buckles and labels. It’s a complex process combining it all through 184 production steps over 122 production minutes with 59.19 meters of cutting perimeter and 40 000 stitches.13

64 pieces of fabric in one pair of trousers, why so many?

The human body is complex and to be able to offer the wearer maximum comfort and mobility, we need to construct a shape that follows the body’s contours, whatever an individual’s size. We also want to maximize the ergonomics and durability of the trousers to ensure longevity. If you want them to last, it’s important to wear the right size and style that fits your body shape. A pair of properly fitting trousers will work with you, following your every move, no matter your working position.

What about the choice of fabric, thread and seams?

In building a pair of Work Trousers, fabric has a major impact on product performance and lifecycle as well as comfort and durability. We always consider several options of fabrics and test them both individually and in combination before starting the production process. The fabrics we choose influences the choice of thread use and we also have specifications for every seam in every garment, as well as rules for stitching to ensure the Trousers last. So, what’s “the secret” behind a good pair of sustainable Work Trousers?

It’s so much more than simply sewing pieces of fabric together. 50 years’ experience of positive energy in workwear development drives us to embrace sustainability. It brings together the best in market-leading design capabilities with a clear understanding of how new fabric technologies and sustainable raw materials can be combined to produce durable, ergonomic Work Trousers tailored suit every working environment and weather condition.

Check out the video at

10 Better Cotton, 2030 Strategy, , (Accessed 20th February 2024). 11 Greenhouse Gas Protocol, , (Accessed 19th February 2024). 12 Hultafors Group, Policies and Certifications – Code of Conduct, , (Accessed 19th February 2024). 13 Snickers Workwear, How Snickers Workwear Trousers are made, , (Accessed 15th February 2024).


Rope and Sling Specialists Ltd. (RSS) has invested £500k in relocating fabrication business to Swansea from an original building next to headquarters

The lifting and rigging company acquired Gemmak in February 2019 with a twopronged strategy to onboard a machine shop and gain valuable land. Three members of staff and a small order book were part of the transaction. Gemmak, which will retain its name and continue to trade as a separate business, has been moved to a 28,000 square-foot property that sits on an even larger block of land. RSS will retain the previous location, with ideas as to how best to utilise it still percolating. A limited amount of welding equipment will be transferred but most technologies and tools will be new purchases.

Steve Hutin, managing director at RSS, said: “The Gemmak brand had a rich history and good reputation, but we’ve been able to develop it into a fully functioning manufacturing division within our engineering services department.

“We can fabricate anything metal, using the latest design, cutting, and welding technology, while the operation has also served as an efficient way to leverage land, which is hugely important to a rapidly growing lifting and rigging operation.”

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relocating its Gemmak Engineering Ltd. headquarters in Pyle, Wales.

RSS has invested in a new suite of design systems, based on SolidWorks, a solid modelling computeraided design and computer-aided engineering computer programme. Upgraded tooling includes various guillotines, a plasma cutter, radial drills, magnetic drills, pillar drills, a centre lathe, an iron

worker / press, an abrasive wheel, a band saw, and a circular saw. Gemmak will continue to deliver oneoff projects plus batch orders and maintain ongoing production lines for customers.

Hutin reiterated that the half-a-million-pound investment is in addition to plans to inject £1m over the next two years towards opening three new locations in Glasgow, Bristol, and the West Midlands this year; and two more, likely in the north and south east respectively, in 2025. Steve Simpson, engineering services business development at Gemmak, will be responsible for ensuring that these expanded engineering and manufacturing capabilities will serve all existing and new operations nationwide.

Hutin said: “We will look to increase staff levels to help Steve in his endeavours and win more contracts. Taking advantage of Gemmak is one example of how we need to be cohesive across all depots. At a recent managers’ meeting, he gave a good overview of what the division is capable of doing, using current projects to demonstrate how it fits with our core offerings.”

As was widely reported by trade media, Gemmak recently received a UKCA Certificate of Conformity of the Factory Production Control, up to and including EXC 3. The certificate, to designated standard EN 10901:2009 + A1:2011, covers structures and structural components, including manufacture of structural steelwork components.

EXC 3, or execution class 3, relates to supporting structures made of steel up to strength class S700 and structural components made of aluminium alloys. Typical examples include buildings with more than 15 floors; pedestrian, bicycle, road, and railway bridges; and crane tracks. It will continue to manufacture to EXC 1 and EXC 2 standards.

Gemmak is also certified to ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISO 45001, and Safe Contractor.

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The relocation represents a £500k investment by Rope and Sling Specialists Ltd.


Material Lab, in London’s West End, is a design resource and materials library and home to a comprehensive range of innovative, high-end brands which have been developed for the UK’s architectural community.

The impressive two-storey showroom was founded in 2006 as an inspirational hub for designers, architects and developers where displays, presentations, workshops and partner events bring products, designs and technology to life. It is now firmly established and supported by leading brands in the surface coverings, bathroom, and building design industry generally. Visitors are offered a wealth of information on different product portfolios – from tiles to worktops; wall coverings to flooring; and taps to showers.

One key partner of Material Lab is SchlüterSystems. The worldwide company is the leading name in holistic system solutions for the function, protection and decoration of tile and stone, with many of the company’s 10,000 product lines finding applications in challenging conditions such as bathrooms and wetrooms.

Lee Rowland, Head of Sales for Schlüter, explains “Material Lab is an ideal partner for

us as we are accessible to the architectural community in a much-visited, easy location in London. Designed for professionals, it means discerning visitors can access all the information and advice they may require, in an inspiring, friendly place. We have chosen to display the products and schemes which have proven most popular for commercial projects so that the architect or designer can almost “build” their bathroom, wetroom, or complementary space, here.”

The displays highlight Schlüter’s expertise in providing intelligent, stylish solutions with the product ranges working together to create a waterproof, functional, long-lasting bathroom or wetroom. Examples on view include JOLLY tile trims in realistic, textured finishes, and SCHEINE, RENO and DECO trims and transitions in various metallic options. There is also the chance to see the popular electric underfloor heating system DITRA-HEAT, along with different thicknesses of the versatile KERDI-

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tileable, waterproof backerboards, and the handy storage option provided by the Schlüter SHELF portfolio.

Helpfully, visitors can take away samples of selected products; they can also be ordered from head office or Sample Library ( There are also sample key chains and ranges of informative literature available.

Lee concludes, “Schlüter-Systems is all about high-quality installations; Material Lab is the perfect place for professionals who want to understand how to get there and create the very best spaces in their projects.”

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Rockford, Illinois-based The Caldwell Group Inc. is celebrating 70 years. The below-the-hook and material handling equipment manufacturer will mark the occasion with a series of events, culminating in a latesummer gala with customers, partners, suppliers, and staff.

Founded by Leslie Caldwell in 1954, as a maker of lifting slings, the firm has expanded and moved several times over the decades, now occupying two large manufacturing and warehouse facilities. The company has been shaped by numerous acquisitions and collaborations, including the purchase of the J.C. Renfroe lifting clamp business and a strategic partnership with RUD to bring lifting points and other products to the U.S. and Canada. Today, Caldwell employs over 120 people.

Doug Stitt, president and CEO, said: “Not only have we existed for 70 years, but we have evolved and developed what we provide to the marketplace.

“We’ve contributed to how people lift and move things, and how they can do it more safely. We’ve been able to provide a great place to work and created a community, so it’s really a celebration of all our people, suppliers, and customers that have supported and contributed to success and longevity.”

He added: “Business becomes tougher and tougher every year, it seems, so taking some time to appreciate our accomplishments is worthwhile. Nothing can be taken for granted in today’s marketplace. It’s important to celebrate significant milestones because it pays respect to all those who helped build the company and those that are currently working towards the next 70 years.

“It’s crazy to think we started out with sewing machines making slings and now we are one of the leading fabricators of welded, steel lifting products.”

Recent highlights include partnering with Majestic Steel USA to deliver coil grabs, sheet lifters, and hooks for a facility in Arkansas; expanding the series of RUD ACP-Turnado lifting points by adding Max and Supermax versions; and designing a 2,500-lb. capacity transport cradle, to facilitate final assembly of Intuitive Machines’ lunar lander, Nova-C.

The wider portfolio includes an assortment of

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The Caldwell Group Inc., a manufacturer of below-the-hook and material handling equipment, is celebrating 70 years in business.

below-the-hook lifters, for handling beams, coils, and sheet; mill-duty lifters; Posi-Turner load rotation equipment; vacuum lifters; construction lifters; fork truck attachments; jib and gantry cranes; Rig-Release remote releasing hooks, DuraLite composite lifting products; Renfroe lifting clamps; and RUD lifting points.

Stitt added: “Yes, the products we offer are different now, but we still focus on quality; we still focus on helping our customers solve problems, and we are still integral in keeping safe lifting at the forefront. We’ll continue to introduce new products and services for our customers, but I expect the next 70 years to focus on building quality products and providing our customers with the best overall experience possible—that’s what matters.”

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Now in stock and ready for immediate delivery


Stelrad’s range of radiators are aesthetically designed to perform with the future in mind. All radiators, including current and new models are fully compatible with low temperature heating systems and are in stock for immediate delivery.

Stelrad have the radiators to meet your installation, specification and contract needs.


Large range of sizes, styles, colours and high output radiators

Compact with Style Vertical
Find out more at


Cut level F


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Tilsatec | +44 (0)1924 375742 | | TILSATEC LIMITED, Flanshaw Lane, Wakefield, West Yorkshire, WF2 9ND, ENGLAND
See us on stand 3 E/40 25-27 April 2023, NEC Birmingham UK COVER STORY

SterlingOSB Zero PrimedPlus selected for cathedral contract

A Suffolk-based scaffolding and flat roofing specialist has chosen SterlingOSB Zero PrimedPlus from West Fraser for the hoardings around repair works at the St Edmundsbury Cathedral site in Bury St Edmunds.

Pro-Flat Specialist Services serves clients across much of East Anglia in the domestic, commercial and specialised historic buildings sectors. In this instance, English Heritage contacted the team when stone masons were required to carry out repairs to the centuries-old limestone walls.  Given the highly visible location where worshippers and the wider public pass in large numbers, the cathedral authorities wanted the scaffolding and the work itself to be smartly screened off.

Pro-Flat contacted Falcon Timber in High Wycombe, its regular supplier of board materials, to discover that the merchant had West Fraser’s new SterlingOSB Zero Primed Plus product available, which is fully prepared to avoid the need for painting on site.  A full pack of 50 boards was delivered to the site, for Pro-Flat’s experienced operatives to proceed with screw-fixing them to a supporting framework of timbers, braced off the scaffold.

The Director in charge of the work for Pro-Flat Specialist Services commented: “As well as installing three-layer felt and hot bonded roofing systems, a lot of our work is focused on historic buildings across Suffolk, North Essex, South Norfolk and East Cambridgeshire, where there are many ecclesiastical and other properties in the care of English Heritage.  When we were asked to erect a hoarding around the works at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, we spoke to one of Falcon Timber’s advisers who recommended the new SterlingOSB Zero PrimedPlus which definitely saved us time as it is easy to work with and was delivered to us preprimed and therefore cut down labour on site.”

As a sturdy board which is ideal for the construction

of screening and walkways, either for privacy or to fulfil health & safety requirements, SterlingOSB Zero PrimedPlus is well able to withstand the inclement British weather too.

As with all West Fraser’s SterlingOSB Zero products, no extra formaldehyde is used during the manufacturing process, so it is safe to specify in hospitals, schools and other public realms.  Furthermore, its ultra-smooth surface means the boards can be adorned with graphics so can be used to offer directional information as well as branding, promotional material and artwork.

Primed in the factory, in either a neutral white or grey paint, the edges of the OSB3 boards are treated with a sealant on all edges to protect against water ingress while the UV-resistant putty layer applied offers even further weather protection as well as enhancing the ultra-smooth finish.  Being knot and

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St Edmundsbury Catheral

void free due to the rigorous manufacturing process means they will cut cleanly while being easy to fix and durable.

The boards are supplied in packs of 50 to cover a total area of approximately 150 m2, with each measuring 1220 mm wide by 2440mm long and at 18mm thickness.  SterlingOSB Zero PrimedPlus is CE-marked and complies

with the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC® (C012533)) and BBA Agreement requirements while being manufactured in the UK enhances security of supply and sustainability.

For further information, call 01786 812 921 or visit

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Limestone walls screened by SterlingOSB Zero PrimedPlus

A helping hand for specifiers from SFS

Despite the prevalence of design and build contracts across many construction sectors, there is still a high proportion of architectural practices, along with developer clients, which seek to achieve excellence in the specification and delivery of projects: whether in relation to targeting greater energy efficiency, the upper levels of BREEAM, enhanced whole life cost, or perhaps to meet site specific challenges.

In any of these situations, it is likely to be the outer envelope, and in particular the cladding system, which plays a pivotal role; and presents an area where consultants will likely seek greater support from manufacturers to ensure aspirations are achieved. Inevitably, there is a balance to be struck between aspiration and cost constraints, including pressures to switch specifications as the programme evolves.

As a highly experienced specialist in the design and development of rainscreen cladding support systems, as well as carbon and stainless-steel fastening solutions, SFS Group enjoys excellent working relationships with a number of leading architectural practices, leading to the manufacturer’s involvement with a long list of landmark projects.

Andy Stolworthy, the Director of Product and Market Development for SFS, observes: “Not only is it advantageous for us to be able to engage early in the design process, to offer a consultative approach and optimise the outcomes; but the later that contractors attempt

to change the specification, the higher the cost implications are likely to be. Ideally, adhering to the approved design parameters will enable goals to be achieved, whether that is on sustainability or particularly thermal performance, where sub-contractors are often tempted to try and switch specifications without rechecking the calculations. For example, switching away from our extruded aluminium brackets to folded ones will not only mean more of the cheaper ones are required to carry the load, but the increased points of contact with the main structure negatively impact the thermal performance. Ultimately, the U-Value calculations are invalidated, while the labour element of the installation cost also rises.”

In contrast to most competitors which do not have staff fully dedicated to specifiers, SFS has two managers covering the North and South of the UK, who not only look to identify projects where they can directly add value, but who also liaise with the 12 Regional Technical Sales Managers, along with

Construction Update 28

other members of the technical team. This enables them to work directly with the design teams and material manufacturers, or OEMs, and key contractors.

Alluding to the crucial aspect of safety, Andy Stolworthy continues: “Some of the larger clients are keenly interested in their estates, and also the longevity of the properties they develop, but most prefer to deal with manufacturers solely through the design process. And this distancing can result in inappropriate fall protection systems being installed. Ensuring safety for those involved with long term maintenance or later adaptations of a building is paramount; particularly with regard to specifying robust horizontal lifeline systems for fall protection. Our lifeline systems are integral to the secure and efficient maintenance as well as installation of building envelopes.”

From its unrivalled ConnectSuite® on-line design tools, to the delivery of half a dozen RIBA certified CPD seminars and other types of support, strategically structured to provide add value. SFS is committed to going above and beyond to help create stand-out structures.

He concludes: “In order that occupants can enjoy buildings which are safe and comfortable to live in – where the firestopping and the rest of the detailing is right – where condensation does not form around all of the window openings or other issues occur – we have to ensure we engineer them correctly. Ultimately, we are here to help ensure the best outcome for any project we are involved on.”

For further information, call 0330 0555888 or visit

Construction Update 29


Albrighton Village Action Group launches to fight Boningale Homes’ green belt grab.

Angry residents of a Shropshire village have joined forces to prevent a developer from progressing plans to grab green belt land for a massive housing development.

Albrighton Village Action Group (AVAG) has been officially launched this week to fight Boningale Homes’ ill-thoughtout proposal and has already received huge backing from the local community and Mark Pritchard MP.

Over 2000 people have signed a petition to say ‘NO’ to plans to build 800+ houses on 56 hectares of green belt alongside Cross Road, Newhouse Lane and both sides of Patshull Road.

This significant overdevelopment is outside the agreed Local Plan and will involve the removal of an enormous area of productive farmland, mature trees and hedgerows, with extremely negative implications for roads, railways, health services, traffic levels and pedestrian safety.

Claire Lakin, Spokesperson for Albrighton Village Action Group, commented: “This group has been formed to give local people a co-ordinated voice in the fight against Boningale Homes and other developers who want to destroy our village in the pursuit of quick profits.

“We are not against development that has already been agreed in the Local Plan and Albrighton has seen large recent expansion with hundreds of homes being built. This new proposal threatens our status as a village and will destroy our beautiful landscape, in this case protected green belt land. At the same time, it will eliminate many of the reasons why people choose to live here.

“Talk of this development being needed to accommodate overspill population from the Black Country is ridiculous, especially when you consider that very region has a surplus of suitable brownfield and greenfield sites and an urgent need for urban regeneration.”

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Albrighton Small Pool March 24

Albrighton Village Action Group has made significant progress with the number of people signing the petition passing 2000 in just a few weeks and over £1000 raised towards operating costs to fight the plans.

Positive meetings have been held with local politicians and members have attended sessions with Albrighton Parish Council and Shropshire Council to take advice on how to oppose these proposals. Tellingly, AVAG has now commissioned planning consultants and lawyers to support its objectives.

5000 flyers – detailing the reasons behind the opposition – are being distributed across the village this week, with future protests planned and an Albrighton Village Action Group public meeting in the process of being scheduled.

“Developers see green belt land and villages as a huge opportunity to maximise profits, ignoring the damage and long-term loss it will inevitably cause,” continued Claire.

“You only have to look at similar plans being touted around for Brewood, Codsall and Bishops Wood, not to mention recent threats to Tong and the overdevelopment of Shifnal. This issue is not going away and, as local people who feel passionately about our village, we need to be ready to oppose, pressure and work towards the ‘right’ outcome.

“As there has been no official planning application submitted yet, we are urging residents of Albrighton not to engage with Boningale Homes. Instead, they should sign our petition, join our Action Group, and get ready to fight.”

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further information on AVAG, please follow the group’s social channels on Facebook and Twitter.
To sign the e-petition, please visit Oppose Boningale Homes.
Albrighton Land March 24
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