Construction Update - September 2023

Page 1 September 2023 Flagship development in Wandsworth benefits from URSAPAN BLACK Highlands housebuilder on the benefits of SterlingOSB Zero Ian Still – Sales Director at SBUK group talks about SIPs and the recent changes to SAP10

Solutions to Domestic Repairs

A company is only as good as its support sta so at the Magicman head o ce in Brighton, there are dedicated teams of technical experts and call handlers ready to help customers 6 days a week.

Magicman have repair technicians available nationwide so there is always someone ready to help customers in their local area. However the story doesn’t begin or end there, they are supported by dedicated teams of friendly call handlers and technical experts at Magicman’s head o ce and call centre in Sussex. There are specialists in every department ready to help with General Enquiries, Desktop Analyses, Insurance Claims, Bookings and After Care, six days a week.

Customers can upload photos and a few details about their damaged items through Magicman’s ‘Get an Estimate’ form on our website, company Facebook page or FREE APP for iPhone and Android devices. Technical experts with years of experience in the eld, carry out a Desktop Analysis to determine whether a successful and lasting repair can be carried out.

An estimate is then dispatched based on time needed to carry out works. This means that for most customers a site visit is not necessary, speeding up the bookings process and avoiding call out charges.

Suppliers of Specialist Repairs to Wood












Burns Stains

....and much more, just ask!

For a free estimate visit or get our FREE app available for Apple and Android smart phones

Before Before After After
Dealing with waste water onsite? We provide CONCRETE WASHOUT AND WATER TREATMENT SOLUTIONS so that you can easily re-use or safely discharge your onsite wastewater Featured This Month: @ConstructionUpd Construction Update Get in touch with a member of the team today on 020 805 09659 or email 12 9 14 16 When a smaller wastewater pumping system is needed due to space restrictions! Stop Start Unlocks Distribution Capacity with Descartes’ Last Mile Delivery Solution Snickers Workwear’s New Hybrid Jacket Flagship development in Wandsworth benefits from URSAPAN BLACK

Salt Town Contractors

Who We Are

Salt Town Contractors was born out of a passion for the construction industry. Utilising our wealth of experience, we set out to help companies of all shapes and sizes access specialist solutions at an affordable price. We’re a close-knit family-run business set up by a married couple who found a gap in the market for bespoke solutions where innovation doesn’t cost the earth.

Inspired by the Cheshire Salt Towns community surrounding the area of our Northern Office - we strive to exhibit the same grit, dedication

and integrity in our work. We offer various nationwide services, including specialist roofing, flat roofing, cladding, and rain screen solutions. Further to these services, We’re pleased to announce we are launching a new division of our business - Salt Town Safety.

What Makes Us Different?

At Salt Town Contractors, we endeavour to appropriately manage our supply chain and ensure we only align with organisations committed to implementing proper safety practices. With over 20+ years of knowledge and industry

experience, we want to help clients achieve specialist solutions safely and at a fair investment.

Salt Town Safety

Safety is an intrinsic part of what we do; too often, we see construction companies that are non-compliant with regulations neglect proper safety protocols and training, jeopardising their workers’ safety. Failing to adhere to necessary safety practices puts workers at risk of accidents injuries, or even fatalities.

Salt Town Safety is our answer to combatting negligence in the


industry. Our highly-skilled team are trained to ensure your safety systems comply with work-at-height regulations. As specialist service providers, we supply and install height safety systems, provide roof access, and ensure your safety systems are tried and tested with our rigorous surveys

In addition to roof access and work-at-height systems, Salt Town Safety also provides workat-height compliance training. As an employer, you must regularly test your work-at-height systems’ functioning to protect your personnel from fatal injury. Salt Town Safety provides specialist

surveys and testing, including work-at-height access equipment compliance testing.

Why Us?

At Salt Town Contractors, we build solid, lasting relationships with clients who value our honesty and dedication. We have a strong track record of satisfied clients who return time and time again. We work with organisations of all shapes and sizes, from small businesses to larger FM companies; no matter the budget, we can transform your vision into reality with commitment, innovation and attention to detail.

Contact us


27 Old Gloucester Street, London WC1N 3AX, United Kingdom


Southern Office (Head Office)0203 8851452

Northern Office - 01606259629



Highlands housebuilder on the benefits of SterlingOSB Zero

After four decades in the industry and 30 years of running his own joinery business in the North of Scotland, Kevin Rodgers has seen the panel board product market evolve both in application and performance; and has developed a particular liking for the OSB which is manufactured close to him.

While his business, Kevin Rodgers Joiners Ltd, is centred on Inverness, he works across much of the Highlands and the West Coast of Scotland, mainly building houses for private clients and small developers. He and his team are currently fitting out a four-bedroom detached property whose timber frame construction is making good use of the SterlingOSB Zero’s strength, versatility and all-round userfriendliness.

The 200 square-metre two-storey house has been designed by the Invernessbased consultancy, Colin Armstrong Architects, and was conceived from the outset as a panelised timber structure. However, rather than utilising a factory fabricated kit, Kevin’s firm has fabricated all the components on site to a high degree of accuracy, carrying out the erection and coordinating closely with other trade contractors.

Kevin Rodgers comments: “This is a high specification property where two of the four bedrooms are en-

suite while energy performance is being maximised with very good levels of insulation and underfloor heating to optimise output. We’ve worked with Colin Armstrong Architects on a number of jobs in the past and the project partner, David Cameron, specified the SterlingOSB Zero. The ‘stickbuilt’ wall panels are 2700mm high and have SterlingOSB Zero as the sheathing across the entire envelope while taking the racking loads for some of the internal walls. I can remember Sterlingboard from the very early days and, as it has been developed, it has virtually taken over from plywood for most applications. It is very easy to cut and fit while the accuracy is very good, and conditioning has got over the problems you sometimes suffered from moisture getting into the wood if you couldn’t get it sheeted over and watertight quickly enough.

“We’ve used both the 11mm and 18mm boards here, with the latter ones being T&G which we’ve laid as the flat roof decking for a couple of balcony features. We buy most of ours from Caley Timber in Dalcross but get it elsewhere depending on where we’re working.”

SterlingOSB Zero is available in a range of sizes and thicknesses up to 22mm as well as a T&G version ideal for flooring and decking applications. The highperformance panel product, free of added formaldehyde, has also earned BBA approval and meets the requirements of NHBC Technical.

For further information, call 01786 812 921 or visit

September 2023
"I can remember Sterlingboard from the very early days and, as it has been developed, it has virtually taken over from plywood"

New research outlines the huge opportunity for developers to improve ‘lacking’ public EV charging facilities

The lack of availability and accessibility of current EV charge points, coupled with damaged infrastructure, incompatibility and inadequate payment options is causing frustration amongst UK EV drivers. As a result, over two-thirds (67 percent) of respondents are prepared to pay a premium to reserve a public charging bay to ensure they can power up their vehicles. Just over a quarter (27 percent) are willing to part with up to £10, and 33 percent up to £5. A further 7 percent would even be prepared to go higher at over £10, all to avoid ‘charge anxiety’.

The study of over 1,000 UK EV drivers by SMS explores the current customer experience of using, and relying on, public EV charge points. Despite an almost ubiquitous love of their EV (94 percent), 67 percent of UK EV drivers wish they’d known more about public EV charging availability before they’d transitioned to electric.

It uncovers that although we’re seeing an exponential growth in the home EV charging market, a mere 5 percent of respondents rely solely on this option to power their vehicle. In reality, a fifth (20 percent) of EV drivers surveyed remain completely reliant on public EV charging due to having no charge points available to them at home or at work. A further 33 percent use public EV charge points a lot, with 31 percent only sometimes, and only 15 percent stated ‘rarely’.

Surprisingly, 70 percent of EV drivers still have limited public charging options in their area. This leads to a staggering 81 percent of EV drivers having to wait for a public charge point, with a third spending 30 mins to an hour (30 percent), and 27 percent between one to two hours before they could access a much needed recharge.

It doesn’t end there, of those surveyed:

• Over three-quarters (77 percent) have been unable or unwilling to access a public EV charge point. 36 percent stated that this was because they are out of order / broken, and for 27 percent it was simply that they weren’t available.

• An additional 18 percent of EV drivers found the EV charge points were not compatible with their vehicle, and for 15 percent they didn’t have their preferred payment option.

• Worryingly, 17 percent of respondents have avoided using public EV charge points because the location didn’t feel safe.

• 68 percent of EV drivers admitted it is stressful to always have to think about public charging availability when they take a long journey.

Mark Winn, Head of EV Strategy at SMS explained: “Home EV charging may be on the rise, but it’s critical that the UK’s growing number of EV drivers have adequate access to fully functioning public EV charge points while they are on the move. However, in the race to meet EV charging expectations, targets and market share, companies have

deployed – and continue to install – the wrong type of chargers, in the wrong location. Added to this, the payment options are either substandard or created to monopolise the market, and infrastructure maintenance seems to be firmly off the ‘to-do’ list. This is creating a ‘perfect storm’ of customer dissatisfaction, frustration and charge anxiety for EV drivers, and the future of electric motoring in the UK is coming under unfair scrutiny as a result. We simply must do more.”

Interestingly, the SMS study points out that public EV charge point infrastructure doesn’t just benefit drivers, it can be a huge boost to businesses and the local economy. Within the last year, of those polled:

• 41 percent used EV charge points in a public car park. Almost half (49 percent) had used a public EV charge point at a supermarket and 28 percent at an out of town shopping centre or retail park.

• 29 percent accessed public EV charge points when staying overnight at a hotel for business and the same number (29 percent) when staying overnight at a hotel for leisure.

• Two-fifths (40 percent) had charged up at a motorway service station. Interestingly, nearly three-quarters (71 percent) stated that past experiences and availability of EV charging influences their choice of motorway service station.

Mark Winn added: “While we need to exponentially increase the quantity of EV charge points in multiple locations this cannot be at the expense of their quality. Not all EV charge points are created equal and the type required varies depending on where it’s being installed and who is using it. EV infrastructure always needs to be planned with three Rs in mind: right time, right location and right speed. EV may be a nascent market, but this doesn’t mean that there is any excuse for providing the public with substandard EV charging solutions. If we want to avoid a public backlash against EV adoption, then greater due diligence must be applied to EV charge point installation deals.”

In response, SMS has published ‘Powering up public EV charging: it’s time to plug in the gaps’. The downloadable report looks at the current state of public EV charging in the UK. It’s designed to ensure that those responsible for public EV charging are armed with the information they need to drive the roll out of public charging forward. From residential and commercial developers and land owners, to local authorities, city and county councils. After all, the UK government has made a promise that 300,000 EV charge points will be available up and down the UK by 2030. In the same year, it plans to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles - however, 88 percent say public EV charging needs to improve if UK drivers are to be encouraged to transition to electric.

A free copy of the report, and blueprint, can be downloaded at

September 2023
The report from SMS looks at the current experience of public EV charging and how UK landlords and developers can contribute to making it ‘fit for the future.’

Snickers Workwear’s New Hybrid Jacket

The new Hybrid multi-purpose work jacket is a street-smart, highly versatile garment. Great on site or for leisurewear, it’s made of flexible, wicking jersey fabric with Repreve® 1 fabric insulation in the shoulder and upper body area.

The Hybrid provides great freedom of movement and elasticated comfort for all types of work and warmth or ventilation when you need it.

W hatever toplayer clothes you need –for work, play or protection against hazards – Snickers Workwear has a range of Jackets that will work on site for both men and women, always delivering optimal performance, comfort and good looks.

Just check out the features of Snickers Workwear Jackets, there will be one to suit you - wherever you are, whatever you need, whatever you’re doing.

You can call the Helpline on 01484 854788; check out or email

September 2023 09
1 The Repreve® fibre, made from recycled materials, helps us reduce our climate footprint without compromising on the strength or performance of Getting more information on the Snickers Workwear jackets range is easy.
Workwear - Protectivewear - Performancewear - Leisurewear. products/work-jackets

Gilberts leads the way in creating the right hospitality environment

Gilberts Blackpool is continuing its pioneering reputation at the original outlet for one of the UK’s fastest-growing coffee brands.

Black Sheep Coffee, with its strapline of ‘leaving the herd behind’, it is leading the field in expansion, opening 30 stores in 2022, with a focus on speciality coffee and customer service. Founded less than a decade ago, the brand already has 40 outlets across the UK, including at the iconic, once-derelict Grade II* Battersea Power Station.

The chain’s owner Group Metropolitan has turned to Gilberts to create a discreet means of balancing adequate ventilation for the Battersea outlet’s kitchen without impacting on customers’ ability to relax and enjoy a coffee al fresco in the outside seating area.

A floor-mounted screen of 12no. AP50 acoustic panels enclosed behind a bank of 12 no. WGF38 factory-built flanged louvres minimises noise whilst directing the extract air (and associated odours from the kitchen) upwards away from guests and surrounding residents.

To accommodate the architecture of the external façade, the compact bank graduates from 1.5m to 2m along its 10.4m length, providing 50% free ventilation with noise modulation.

Group Metropolitan Contracts Manager Karolis Vigelis commented, “The design of the Battersea Power Station outlet’s exterior meant that although the concept was comparatively simple, getting the design right, to make it effective yet as discreet as possible, was more complex. The end result shows how it pays to think outside the box, not follow the herd!”

The WG38 is the smallest profile available in Gilberts’ louvre

product range, developed over the years to provide a comprehensive package to keep pace with the evolution of building design and structural interfaces. It includes standard, high performance, site assembled and acoustic louvres, available in a range of ratings for weight, ventilation, weather, insects and even bird ingress. Even fixings can often be tailored to individual site preferences.

Innovatively, with its in-house design expertise, Gilberts has the capability to create bespoke configurations which can be both CFD modelled, and tested within its own laboratory to give customers complete ‘fit for purpose’ peace of mind.

Gilberts also offers a comprehensive range of PPC,PVF and PVF2 coatings across its louvres, available in any RAL colour, applied to louvres of almost any size.

Founded six decades ago, and still family-owned, Gilberts is the UK’s leading independent air movement engineer. It is unique in its ability to design, manufacture and test all products- including bespoke fabrications- in-house, to the extent it even designs and manufactures its own tools at its 140,000 sq ft head office and production facility.

September 2023

Breedon launches 2023 apprenticeship programme

Breedon Group plc (Breedon or the Group), a leading vertically-integrated construction materials group in Great Britain and Ireland, today announces the launch of its 2023 apprenticeship programme that will see 70 new apprentices join the Group in September this year.

Applications for the 2023 intake are now open and this year’s apprentices are invited to apply for roles across many different disciplines at various sites across England, Scotland and Wales, including:

• Mechanical and Electrical Maintenance Technicians

• Lab technicians

• HGV Service and Maintenance Technician

• Quantity Surveyors

• Surfacing Operatives

• Plant Maintenance

• Customer Services

• Machinery Operatives

• Operations Management

• Project Engineers

Those interested in building their future at Breedon need no prior experience or qualifications if they are applying for a Level 2, Intermediate Apprenticeship. However, applicants looking to apply for Levels 3 or higher will need specific qualifications:

• Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeships require 5 GCSEs

• Levels 4, 5, 6 or Higher/Degree Apprenticeships require A levels or a BTEC

Jorden, a Mobile Plant Operative based in Longwater, East Anglia, said: “I didn’t need any previous experience within the field and have

been given all the help and support that I need to do well within my role. I had reached the age where I no longer wanted just a job but a career, and I really feel that I have found that within Breedon. Now I am working in this industry, I can’t imagine wanting to do anything else.”

Successful applicants will be paid from day one and will have the opportunity to build a career, having gained industry experience at the largest independent construction materials group in the UK.

Those interested in applying for the programme should visit our website to apply

The application window will be open for one month, meaning all applications must be submitted by 5 May 2023. A full timeline

for the application process and onboarding programme for the successful applicants can be found on Breedon’s website here

Caroline Roberts, Group People Director at Breedon  commented: “Breedon is a wonderful place to build a career, and this year’s programme will see our new class of apprentices begin varied and dynamic careers at sites across England, Scotland and Wales.

“We are always looking for talented, ambitious young people to join our team and make Breedon an even greater place to work. .Our purpose is to make a material difference to the lives of all of our colleagues, as well as to our customers and local communities. That’s why I am delighted to be launching this year’s apprenticeship programme.”

September 2023
New programme will see 70 apprentices join the Group in September 2023

The Jung Pumpen Hebefix Plus, available from Pump Technology Ltd, based in Berkshire, is suitable for commercial buildings and can be fitted neatly in all pre-walled systems or cavities due to its small tank depth of 183mm. The tank is “pressure tight” to assure the pumping system never floods even in the unlikely event of a breakdown. Additionally, it will easily fit perfectly under washbasins and counters.

The tank is manufactured from high quality ABS plastic (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) which is rigid in design and will provide long life. ABS plastics are also fully recyclable.

The Hebefix Plus utilises the Jung Pumpen U3 submersible pump and can pump up to 6m head making it suitable for wastewater applications. The pump has a small flushing devise that prevents deposits build up within the tank.

A maximum of three appliances such as sinks or washing machines can be connected and because the bottom inlet is just 75mm centre to floor, the unit can also be used for a shower tray waste application.

The Hebefix Plus also comes with its own runtime monitor and high-level acoustic alarm with a potential volt free contact for connection of a remote alarm or BMS.

September 2023
When a smaller wastewater pumping system is needed due to space restrictions!

With its integrated ventilation and non-return valve the Hebefix Plus is ready-to-install straight out of the box.

Pump Technology Ltd, are authorised by Jung Pumpen GmbH and are now the largest supplier of Jung Pumpen equipment in the UK. These include systems with duty standby pumping configurations, pumps rated for continuous operation at high fluid temperatures of up to 90°C and versions for light chemical applications, typically laboratories, hairdressers, janitor sinks or similar.

In their warehouse in Berkshire they hold large stocks of Jung Pumpen equipment, which means that orders placed before 3pm qualify for next day UK mainland

delivery. It is also possible to collect goods from their warehouse.

With over 30 years’ experience customers can rely on the team at PumpTechnology Ltd to assist with the correct wastewater pumping system for every application.

Pump Technology Ltd also has a dedicated Jung Pumpen department which means that their knowledge of applications and products will always ensure the best technical and commercial solution.

The company also supports contractors and end users with commissioning and maintenance services nationwide.

September 2023 13

Flagship development in Wandsworth benefits from URSAPAN BLACK

Smugglers Way has been designed with sustainability at its core. The 1.41-hectare scheme will see a mix of 554 build-to-rent and affordable apartments spread across 13 towers, making it one of the area’s largest developments.

Quality insulation is one of the most cost-effective ways of reducing CO2 emissions and reducing residents’ energy bills. URSAPAN BLACK was vital to achieving this.

Navigating the city streets

A project of this scale in a busy city presents logistical challenges. The limited space makes it difficult for lorries to manoeuvre when supplying materials to the site.

Project manager at the design and build construction company, McAleer & Rushe, Gerald Laverty, said: “URASPAN slabs are larger than others on the market –meaning you need less of them - and they are compressed during manufacture which allows more to be transported on a truck. This meant fewer deliveries to site which minimised disruption locally and helped us reduce our CO2 emissions.”

Holly Lawless, commercial manager at building materials supplier, Walls & Ceilings International, added:

“URSA engaged with us early in the project development and confirmed availability of the product for the whole three-year period of the build. Many in the industry are struggling with supply chain issues but due to the sheer scale of the project and limited on-site storage, reliability of supply has been – and continues to be – vital in order to stay on track with the project’s tight construction timeframes.”

Making it easy

In addition, the development had tight time frames to stick to. The robust nature of URSAPAN BLACK made it simple to handle and install, helping increase worker productivity levels.

Steve Martin, contracts manager at brickwork contractor Callan Construction, said: “We found the product very easy to use. It’s compressible so easy to store and rigid so it doesn’t flop about when you are building with it. Time-saving qualities like this are vital in a project of this scale.”

Building for a greener future Sustainability was at the forefront of this build.

URSAPAN BLACK supported the project’s sustainability ambitions because it’s manufactured to BS EN ISO 9001 Quality Assurance Systems and BS EN 14001 Environmental Management Systems.

Gerald concluded: “URSAPAN BLACK was a perfect fit for a number of reasons. It helped us meet our sustainability ambitions while also benefitting end users by providing a comfortable indoor climate and reduced energy bills.”

September 2023

Ian Still – Sales Director at SBUK group talks about SIPs and the recent changes to SAP10

The use of SIPs now has a proven track record in the delivery of high performance, thermally efficient dwellings. Historically this was advantageous for our self-build clients that wanted to exceed regulations to drive down energy bills in their forever homes.

However, with regulations under Part L and SAP 10 becoming increasingly stringent the use of SIPs removes variables and provides a streamlined route to compliance for all.

Why do SIPs systems make this process easier for the client?

As building regulations continue to become more stringent, especially with amendments to Part L and now SAP10 as we move toward the 2025 future homes standard, the use of SIPs has huge benefits to all to ensure that compliance is achieved.

Being able to guarantee U values, provide thermal bridging details and help toward ensuring air pressure test results at early design stage allows all clients to accurately cost for the overall energy performance of their build or development.

Using back stop U values, Accredited Construction Details (ACD’s) and default Thermal Bridging (PSI) Values is no longer compliant so ensuring the overall energy performance of the build is achieving your requirements at the earliest stage is the best way to avoid further costs and delays to projects.

Can you expand on this regarding the U values, air pressure tests and thermal bridging - are your SIP panels compliant with current U Value Requirements?

All projects must achieve certain U values to comply with current regulations. This is currently 0.18 in walls and 0.11 in the roof when looking at the target fabric energy efficiency of a dwelling.

However, depending on how the project is performing overall when considering additional measures such as Solar PV, Air Source heat pumps and MVHR it may be that the roof can be delivered at 0.13. Again, early modelling of the dwelling helps to confirm this which again shows the commercial advantage to having this done.

With our SIP systems we can complete U value calculations at the earliest possible stage to ensure we are achieving the required targets. With our SIP systems we are achieving these targets with the thinnest overall construction depths possible which maximises habitable or rentable space internally for the client.

Our range of SIP panels provide options as low as 0.11 in wall applications and 0.13 in roof applications depending on a project’s external finishes.

Along with U values, what is the importance of the Air Pressure testing?

There is no point delivering fantastic U values with poor air pressure test results! SIPs systems are inherently airtight given the accuracy of design, manufacture and install so our systems will often exceed current air pressure test requirements without additional measures. Obviously follow on trades must ensure they are sealing appropriately too around any penetrations made!

A significant change to the new regulations is that all plots on multiple unit developments must be air tested – even if they are the same house type. For developers, the worry of how each dwelling will perform can be eliminated when using SIPs which again reduces variables and potential costs if additional measures are needed due failed air pressure tests.

Our SIP systems also have minimal shrinkage and settlement in comparison to standard timber frame so this ensures air pressure test results are maintained through the lifetime of the building. This combined with reduced timber content in external walls also ensures that thermal bridging is kept to a minimum. This leads nicely onto thermal bridging – what has changed under new regulations?

Default PSI values can no longer be used as this has a negative impact on fabric energy efficiency results, often leading to failure to comply.

Our SIP systems are complete with Pre calculated PSI values that can be sent to your SAP assessor along with the U value calculations we complete for you so the building fabric can be modelled at the earliest possible stage. This can

then help to determine how your other potential measures such as MVHR, Solar PV, UFH and Air Source Heat Pumps will be incorporated.

This has certainly made the target fabric energy efficiency of the building a vital step in achieving SAP10 compliance.

Absolutely. The majority of our clients are looking to deliver thermally efficient, sustainable systems on time and on budget.

When you combine the predictability of cost, program time and thermally efficiency of our systems we are ultimately part of the process in providing our clients with a streamlined route to compliance at the earliest possible stage which further reduces variables and risk whilst on site.

The ability to ensure that a building will achieve the required energy ratings whilst still in design stage allows for all additional measures such as MVHR, UFH and Solar PV to be factored into the design and engineering process of our SIPs system.

As building regulations become more onerous under Part L and SAP10 and the demand for responsibly sourced, sustainable systems increases our BBA approved SIP panels and Structural Timber Association Gold standard certification ensures we are perfectly placed to meet the demands of our growing client base.

About SIP Build UK

SIP Build UK is part of the market leading SBUK Group. For over a decade SIP Build UK take great pride in the design and manufacture of high performance, thermally efficient buildings delivered and installed within budget on site on time. With extensive knowledge and years of experience they cover the length and breadth of England and Wales. Offering SIP, Timber Frame, Cladding and Light Steel Frame Systems they pride themselves on a consultative approach.

September 2023
Find out more: 15

Stop Start Unlocks Distribution Capacity with Descartes’ Last Mile Delivery Solution

Descartes Systems Group (Nasdaq:DSGX) (TSX:DSG), the global leader in uniting logisticsintensive businesses in commerce, announces that UK-based Stop Start Transport Limited, a provider of distribution, warehousing and logistics services, is undertaking a digital transformation of its business by using Descartes’ last mile delivery solution to unlock distribution capacity, enhance customer communications and enable more effective management of logistics data. The Stop Start business, which specialises in transporting bulky and high-value goods that need to be handled with extra care, has replaced manual delivery management processes with the cloudbased Descartes last mile solution. Early results show that Stop Start has decreased its daily route planning time by over 75% and achieved more efficient customer communications and invoicing.

“Stop Start is experiencing high levels of customer demand.  However, our growth has been limited in part by our labour-intensive route planning and order processing capacity. It used to take roughly four hours for three colleagues to plan and optimise approximately 1,000 deliveries daily across our 50-vehicle fleet,” said Chris Pullen, CEO, Stop Start. “With Descartes, we can reduce this to one hour with one employee, allowing us to significantly increase productivity and redeploy staff to wider strategic initiatives. The level of automation and digitisation we have already achieved using the solution has fundamentally transformed our logistics operations.  This, combined with robust track-my-order functionality, means that customer experience has significantly improved.”

Descartes’ last mile delivery solution helps distributionintensive companies improve operational efficiency

September 2023

and the customer experience. It supports dynamic delivery requirements, including same-day delivery, by offering flexible, efficient and cost-effective time windows and delivery options. Descartes’ route planning and optimisation solution also decreases costs. Using advanced optimisation technology, the solution takes committed delivery times and improves how routes are planned and executed, which generates additional delivery capacity and reduces costs. With an integrated GPS-based mobile application, the solution coordinates drivers, dispatchers and call centers to ensure that routes are executed according to plan and exceptions are handled efficiently. Customer self-service web and mobile tracking solutions allow customers to track their orders in real-time. The solution improves sustainability through the elimination of paper and improved route productivity.

“We’re pleased to help Stop Start improve its productivity to meet growing demand for high-value, high-touch delivery services,” said Peio Ribas, SVP Sales EMENAR, Descartes. “Descartes’ last mile delivery solutions are designed to automate and streamline delivery processes, allowing logistics services companies to be more efficient and effective, which is so important as many organizations face resource shortages and escalating costs.”

About Stop Start

Stop Start is a leading delivery business specialising in B2B and B2C deliveries of large and difficult to handle fragile items. Our core business supports the kitchen and bathroom sector with a next day delivery service with national coverage. The Stop Start service is based on high levels of product care and customers service, filling the gap between the parcel network and pallet deliveries. A customer service lead business, Stop Start is continuing to invest in digital solutions that enhance efficiency and deliver best in class customer propositions. Stop Start is a portfolio company of Storskogen, a Swedish listed international group of companies.

About Storskogen

Storskogen is an international group of businesses across Trade, Industry, and Services. We are uniquely positioned to identify, acquire, and develop market leaders with sustainable business models over an infinite ownership horizon. Storskogen creates value by providing access to capital and strategic direction combined with active governance and a decentralised operational model. Storskogen has over 12,900 employees, net sales of SEK 36.5 billion (LTM) across a diversified group of businesses and is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm.

About Descartes

Descartes (Nasdaq:DSGX) (TSX:DSG) is the global leader in providing on-demand, software-as-a-service solutions focused on improving the productivity, security and sustainability of logistics-intensive businesses. Customers use our modular, software-as-a-service solutions to route, track and help improve the safety, performance and compliance of delivery resources; plan, allocate and execute shipments; rate, audit and pay transportation invoices; access global trade data; file customs and security documents for imports and exports; and complete numerous other logistics processes by participating in the world’s largest, collaborative multimodal logistics community. Our headquarters are in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada and we have offices and partners around the world. Learn more at, and connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Installers urged to grasp the opportunity as campaign launches to

close the heat pump skills gap

Target of 30,000 certified installers by 2028 set at launch of the first Energy Efficiency Centre

Acampaign to address a lack of certified heat pump installers in the UK has been launched with installers told there is a huge opportunity ahead.

Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing, a leading national heating and plumbing merchant, is behind the campaign, supported by Energy Saving Trust and GTEC Training.

It aims to address a lack of installers qualified to install heat pumps, which are crucial to the country’s ambition to decarbonise home heating in the drive for Net Zero.

At last count there were 1,500 MCS certified heat pump installers in the country, compared to 135,000 trained gas engineers.

Hemal Morjaria, Managing Director, Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing, speaking on Friday 21 April at the official launch of the company’s first Energy Efficiency Centre in Farnborough, Hampshire, said:

“We are calling on installers to take this opportunity to upskill – and for the industry to make training as accessible as possible.

“The Heat Pump Association estimates we will need 30,000 certified installers to meet the government’s desire for 600,000 heat pumps a year by 2028. So, there is a lot of work to do to convince and inspire installers to take up training.

“This skills gap was identified way back in 2019 by the Committee

for Climate Change, and it is one of the key reasons we’ve opened our Energy Efficiency Centre. The aim is to help customers gain access to training, improve their own businesses and to help the country towards Net Zero.”

Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing has partnered with GTEC Training to offer heat pumps training and is also opening its new Centre to the public.

Hemal added: “The Energy Efficiency Centre is designed to help transition installers across to new technologies and to display the technologies we have here at City Plumbing. That includes heat pumps, solar panels, underfloor heating.

“This means homeowners can visit to find out more about alternative heat source technology, be inspired by what they see and visualise how it would work in their own homes.”

The campaign has already garnered support from Energy Saving Trust, an independent organisation working to address the climate emergency.

Inga Jirgensone, Energy Saving Trust’s Group Head of Business Development, said: “We are committed to addressing the climate emergency and building a sustainable future. To achieve this, we need installers with the skills and expertise to install low carbon heating, including heat pumps, and help households across the UK reduce carbon emissions and contribute to net zero.”

Griff Thomas, Managing Director of GTEC Training, added:

“Whichever way you look at it, heat pumps are here to stay and savvy plumbing and heating installers need to seize the opportunities presented by this market.

“Any investment in upskilling will be returned with a constant and growing stream of business for many years to come, and of course it is important for the environment, too. As a country we need to address this skills gap as soon as possible or face falling further behind.”

The next step in the campaign is a ‘Forward Together’ trade tour in conjunction with leading suppliers, to educate and inspire customers on alternative home heating solutions.

The tour will visit 47 branches in England, Wales and Scotland between June and September, with customers able to meet big-name manufacturers such Vaillant, Daikin, Airflow, Worcester, Grant, Inta, Speedfit, Uponor and Maincor.

A full list of the branches taking part can be found here: forward-together-tour

A white paper analysing the need for more certified heat pump installers also has been published to support the campaign.

For more details go to:


September 2023

FEIN announces new grinding range to elevate industry safety and performance

FEIN, the leading power tools and accessories manufacturer, has announced a new grinding product range, revealing new safety and performance features to meet the latest user needs.

Following the launch, power tool operators working across disciplines will be able to choose from the extended range of over 40 grinding tools, with corded and cordless options available. The range has been developed as a result of first-hand industry feedback, to provide a product suitable for every application, for example, angle grinding, die grinding and stainless-steel processing.

The portfolio includes the launch of the CG 15 compact angle grinder - the first of its class to feature a fully encapsulated, brushless FEIN PowerDrive motor. The tool’s powerful, yet efficient, 1500W motor and superior power-to-weight ratio allow user to operate with superior efficiency and endurance. Furthermore, the angle grinder has been designed with cost and longevity considerations in mind, it requires fewer wearing parts, has longer service intervals and incurs lower maintenance costs throughout its life.

The CG 15 grinder also offers users extensive protection through a variety of safety features which were driven by user feedback, including restart protection, kick back check, jam monitoring and an efficient brake which brings the tool to a stop in less than 2 seconds.

Safety remains an important topic in the industry, with grinding tools classified by RoSPA (The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) as one of the most dangerous tools, with 5,400 injuries recorded annually. FEIN’s Protago high-safety angle grinder, featured in the grinding tool range, was created in collaboration to set new safety standards in the industry. Bouygues, the construction giant, had previously banned the use of compact angle grinders following a serious accident, however, together

September 2023

with FEIN, the teams developed the Protago with safety features that almost fully eliminate the serious risks associated with improper operation.

The Protago, in addition to 9 other tools in this launch, is now available on the 18v AMPShare battery platform, powered by Bosch. The multi-brand shared system allows users to power over 200 different tools from over 30 brands with just one AMPShare battery, eliminating the costly requirement to purchase a specific battery type per tool.

Speaking on the grinder range extension, Andy Mills, managing director at FEIN UK shared: “Our grinder portfolio was developed as

a result of our application-based approach at FEIN, which means that we are out in the industry meeting users to gain a detailed understanding of their working environments and the challenges they are facing to ensure that our products are meeting their needs. By continuing this approach with our grinding tools and this development, we are really proud to be offering users the right product for every application.”

“This grinding tool launch will also see an additional 10 FEIN products becoming available on AMPShare. We are really excited to see our customers responses to this development because we know how the shared battery system makes

their lives easier and enables them the freedom to pick the best tool for the job – and we will be continuing to make our products available on AMPShare throughout the year.”

FEIN has a rich history in providing application-based solutions for end-users across metalworking sectors. With over 150 years’ experience in manufacturing power tools, FEIN is research and innovation-led, continuing to meet the industry’s needs with new product features year after year.

To find out more about the FEIN’s range of grinding tools, visit


FEIN launches powerful magnetic clamping solution in latest safety step

FEIN, the leading power tools and accessories manufacturer, has launched its first expandable clamping solution, the VersaMAG system, to the UK’s metalworking market. The modular system, centred around a powerful magnet, features a range of attachments which can be interchanged for use in endless applications.

The VersaMAG, a neodymium magnet, forms the foundation of the clamping solution. Its innovative 2-rotor system generates a maximum holding force of 7800N, allowing end users to clamp securely onto all magnetic surfaces - as thin as 4mm. As a result, the system will enable users to complete tasks safely and efficiently across a huge range of work environments, such as shipyards, aircraft manufacturing facilities and steel and fabrication shops.

The clamping system’s powerful magnetic base also eliminates the requirements to manoeuvre rigid worktop vices or materials in order to safely secure it while operating tools. This significantly

reduces the required set-up time across many applications, increasing productivity for those working across metal and steel construction, machinery and plant engineering and many more. As well as the magnetic base, the system also consists of several attachments, each designed to support end-user requirements. The VersaMAG vice is easily mounted onto the magnet for quick and flexible use. The ability to set up the vice quickly and easily almost anywhere encourages workers to secure materials and not attempt to hold components in their hands whilst operating power tools, which helps to significantly reduce the risk of workplace accidents. The mobile aspect of

September 2023

the vice also allows for easy removal, creating extra workspace when not required for a task. For use with larger components, FEIN also offers 60mm raising jaws to be attached to the mobile vice.

In addition to the vice and jaws, FEIN has developed a 16mm Welding Plate for use with the magnetic base. Featuring a hole grid system, the welding plate enables simple and precise alignment of workpieces and its small and compact design makes it ideal for stationary and mobile use.

“As well as offering increased productivity and flexibility, the VersaMAG system expands our portfolio of safety solutions.  We know from speaking directly to users that a lack of flexible vice options has historically led to frustration and safety risks, where material cannot be secured properly or operators have felt forced to use their hand, leaving only one hand free for tool operation. We are proud to be solving this issue with our new easy-to-use magnetic clamping system. The

VersaMAG joins our growing collection of safetyled solutions, which also features recent launches including our high-safety angle grinder, the Protago, which pairs perfectly for a safer standard of grinding.” comments Andy Mills, managing director, FEIN UK.

FEIN has a rich history of providing applicationbased solutions for end-users across metalworking sectors. With over 150 years of experience in manufacturing power tools, FEIN is research and innovation-led, continuing to meet the industry’s needs with new product features year after year.

“The launch of the VersaMAG marks FEIN’s first steps into the world of clamping technology, and we are already planning for its expansion, with action underway to offer our customers even more attachments for use in different application areas,” concludes Andy.

To find out more about how the VersaMAG system could help you, please visit


Mitsubishi Electric team up with college to tackle climate change

Mitsubishi Electric has teamed-up with Harlow College to establish The Renewable Energy Training Centre, a new on-campus project for the next generation of heating engineers to train using green technologies.

With the Government aiming to upgrade all homes to an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating of C within the next ten years, it’s more important than ever that heating engineers are trained to install energy-efficient technologies in our buildings. The new centre at Harlow College will support this aim by training students on installing and maintaining renewable energy appliances. Within the centre, workstations will allow learners to develop an understanding of how to install and maintain air source heat pumps, supporting the local community and businesses in meeting targets for Net Zero by 2050.

The college tutors who will train the heating engineers of the future are certified to a minimum of NVQ Level Three as qualified plumbing and heating engineers. They have also undertaken specific

Ecodan product installation training at  Mitsubishi Electric’s Training Centre in Hatfield, Hertfordshire.

Russell Dean, Mitsubishi Electric’s Residential Product Group Director, said: “We are thrilled to be working with Harlow College to support their Renewable Energy Training Centre. We believe that collaborations such as this can help ensure that future generations have access to the training and knowledge needed to build a greener, more sustainable future as we aim to achieve Net Zero.”

The centre will also be fully equipped with six Mitsubishi Electric Ecodan Air Source Heat Pumps, roof-mounted photo-voltaic solar panels, associated collection points and energy-storage unit and two electric vehicle charging points. The solar panels will provide enough energy to power the centre, and any extra energy will be put back into the National Grid.

Mitsubishi Electric Ecodan air source heat pumps can be installed as part of a modern eco-friendly and energyefficient heating system, and offer a more environmentally friendly alternative to traditional gas-fired, solid fuel or oil-fired heating systems.

Karen Spencer, Principal of Harlow College, said: “At Harlow College, we have made a commitment to being carbon neutral in line with the Climate Action Roadmap for Colleges. Training the future generation of heating engineers is part of our contribution to our local community and the environment. We absolutely recognise the contribution they will make to a more sustainable future. We are proud to be working in partnership with Mitsubishi Electric, who are supporting our venture and helping both our staff and students train in this new technology.”

September 2023 24

As a market leader in low carbon heating systems, we help housing developers comply with the changes to Part L of the Building Regulations by specifying Ecodan Air Source Heat Pumps for new build homes.

Our dedicated website pages provide you with support at every one of the seven steps of the RIBA Plan of Work.

Watch our NEW BUILD video with George Clarke

Hamworthy heating provides Shastid energy with a quick and reliable solution

The Tyneham heat pump range offers superb operational reliability, excellent quality, and outstanding performance backed up by engineering excellence and lifetime support. One of the lightest commercial heat pumps on the market, it features a coefficiency of performance (COP) rating of up to 4.85, to provide efficient, low-carbon heating. The seven models in the range have six nominal outputs of between 14 to 70kW, which can also be cascaded to achieve higher outputs in larger installations. Incorporating an inverter controller compressor to accurately match the heat demand, Tyneham heat pumps use R32 refrigerant to deliver increased efficiencies.

Familiar with delivering quick solutions to its own customers, Shastid Energy was confronted with an unusual dilemma when it came to maintaining its own commercial heating system. Faced with a fault on their existing heat pump and unable to source a company willing to provide a quote to repair it, Shastid Energy decided to replace its entire heat pump system. However, confronted with long expected delivery dates, John Atkinson from Shastid Energy turned to Hamworthy Heating for advice. Quick to resolve the issue, a new 14kW air source heat pump was delivered to the Shastid offices within three days, ready for installation straight out of the box.

Designed with installers in mind, Tyneham heat pump components are conveniently housed in the main unit which is compact and lightweight for ease of commission and installation.

Quickly and expertly installed by Shastid Energy’s very own Engineering Managers, Peter Millgate and Daniel Martin, the new system was successfully up and running within two short days, restoring the building’s heat.

“We’ve been dealing with Hamworthy on a weekly basis for years on quotations for replacement boilers and spares and we’ve always received excellent service. Based

on our personal experience of the Tyneham, we wouldn’t hesitate to use Hamworthy again for heat pumps,” concludes John.

With decades of commercial heating experience behind them, both Hamworthy Heating and Shastid Energy understand the value of finding an ecologically and efficient solution. With heat pumps playing an important role in this, Shastid Energy now has a reliable and sustainable system in place for years to come.

For more information on the Tyneham heat pump, please visit: or call 01202 662 552.

September 2023
Following a long and established relationship, Hamworthy Heating, a trusted British manufacturer and supplier of commercial heating and hot water products has supplied Shastid Energy with a Tyneham Air Source Heat Pump for installation at its premises in Cambridgeshire.

Panasonic’s Aquarea K Generation All in One: T-CAP and High Performance Now Available

– Panasonic Heating & Cooling Solutions is pleased to welcome the All in One units, available in T-CAP and High Performance, of its latest Aquarea K Generation heat pumps to market.

With reduced noise levels and enhanced comfort and efficiency, the new generation of Aquarea heat pumps offer extensive technological advancements whilst retaining the strengths of the Panasonic Aquarea range. Aquarea K Generation is a groundbreaking low-energy system for heating, cooling and domestic hot water production that delivers outstanding performance. The new units boast a compact indoor design and have an excellent SCOP of up to 5.12, providing outstanding efficiency and is ideal for new installations and well-insulated homes. K Generation units utilise R32 refrigeration. It retains the refrigerant connection between indoor and outdoor units and provides water outlet temperatures of up to 60°C even when outdoor temperatures are as low as -10°C.

The new heat pumps have been recognised in the 2022 Good Design Awards. As well as recognising the performance efficiencies of the units, the judges commended the outdoor unit’s design which blends into the landscape and contributes to the improvement of the surrounding environment.

Panasonic’s Aquarea All in One Heat Pump is a compact, easy-to-install system with a footprint of

598 x 600mm. It can be neatly lined up with other big appliances like a refrigerator or washing machine to reduce the space required for installation. Thanks to its low height, it can also be installed with a ventilation unit on top. Supplying efficient heating, the unit generates domestic hot water and stores it inside a 185L stainless steel tank with U-Vacua™ insulation to reduce energy losses.


The Aquarea K Generation is now available in T-CAP ranges from 9 to 12kW single phase, designed to keep total capacity even at extremely cold outdoor temperatures, for both retrofit and new builds. The T-CAP line-up is excellent for replacing gas or oil boilers and for connecting to new underfloor heating,

High Performance

Panasonic’s Aquarea K Generation All in One High Performance is available in capacities 3.2 to 9kW. It warms the home effectively and efficiently, even with extreme outdoor temperatures, as well as cools a space in summer and brings hot water all year-round. This solution is ideal for new installations and low consumption homes, offering outstanding efficiency and energy savings with minimised CO2 emissions.

To find out more please visit

September 2023

Morgan Sindall Construction’s Essex business has marked a key point in the renovation and extension of Cedar Hall, a specialist SEN school in Essex, with an official ‘topping out’ ceremony.

Construction milestone celebrated at Essex SEN school

The event, which was attended by Rebecca Harris MP, was held on the roof of the new building alongside the school’s recently installed photovoltaic (PV) panels. Attendees then signed the panelling on the ground floor of the development to mark the occasion.

Other guests on the day included Morgan Sindall Construction’s Essex area director Andy Harper-Rowe and key public officials from Essex County Council including Cllr Tony Ball, Cllr Beverly Egan, and Cllr Andrew Sheldon.

Morgan Sindall was appointed earlier in the year to deliver the £4.3 million project, which will see the school’s teaching facilities expanded to accommodate an additional 80 students.

Procured through Essex County Council’s Construction Framework 2 (ECF2), the project is being delivered in partnership with design and property consultants Concertus. ECF2 is a local government programme designed to rejuvenate elements of the local area to meet modern requirements, such as a growing demand for SEN facilities.

Scheduled to be ready for the September 2023 term, the new development includes a two-storey main building complete with admin space, five classrooms, art room, library, and a vehicle maintenance workshop to support the current curriculum.

As part of Morgan Sindall’s Intelligent Solutions approach, modern methods of construction (MMC) are being utilised throughout the project. This includes the use of Structured Insulated Panels (SIPs) as a key aspect of the new two-storey building’s construction.

Cedar Hall school works with children aged 5-16 with moderate learning difficulties and additional needs. The design of the new spaces has been tailored to suit the needs of its students. This will include design features such as blocking corridors to soften the noise created by air vents.

Cedar Hall SEN school is set to achieve an EPC rating of A*. An energy efficient building fabric, PV panels on the roof and an air source heating system will help the school achieve its sustainability goals.

Morgan Sindall has brought its proven record and expert insight to the Cedar Hall project, evidenced by its SEND Blueprint for Success report that was published last year. This accessible document uses evidence-backed best practice to advise anyone about to embark upon the design and delivery of a SEND school.

September 2023 30

Andy Harper-Rowe, area director for Morgan Sindall Construction in Essex, said: “Recent projections have highlighted the urgent demand for more SEN facilities across the country that are tailored to the needs of their pupils. We are delighted to be delivering this high quality, sustainable expansion to Cedar Hall, that has been built with students front of mind.

“It has been a pleasure to work closely with Essex County Council and to gather together with so many of the project’s stakeholders to celebrate this key milestone and look forward to the benefits that this development will provide for the local community upon its completion.”

Rebecca Harris, Member of Parliament for Castle Point, said: “This is a fantastic £4 million investment into the school that will go on to improve the education of pupils for many years to come. I was very impressed with the design and quality of the build

so far. I was pleased to see that the new block was designed to be carbon neutral in operation, and the solar panels on the roof will help the school cut its future energy bills. I am looking forward to coming back when it is complete after the summer holidays and seeing the brand new classrooms and facilities in use.”

Cllr Tony Ball, Essex County Council Cabinet Member for Education Excellence, Life Long Learning and Employability, said: “Ensuring that every child in Essex has access to an excellent education is at the heart of our Everyone’s Essex strategy, as well as being at the forefront of our vision for levelling up the county.

“This is an example of how Essex County Council is investing in SEN school places across the county, ensuring that all children have the support they need to meet their educational potential, and they receive all the necessary support and resources to meet any special educational needs or disabilities.”

September 2023 31
Health & Safety Update SEPTEMBER 2023 Industry News - Safety & SecurityPPE - Tools & Equipment

September 2023

Health & Safety Update focuses on the importance of safety within occupational and domestic environments – ensuring pro-activity rather than reactivity. We change attitudes towards Health & Safety measures, teaching our associates how to implement guidelines, prevent negligence, prevent injury and preventing the worst case scenario.

To speak to a member of the team, email or call 020 805 09659

& Safety Update SEPTEMBER 2023 Industry News - Safety & SecurityPPE - Tools & Equipment


First Mats Unveils New and Improved IBC Bunds Range, Offering Customers Greater Choice and Savings

First Mats, Birmingham’s leading workplace products specialist, today announced the launch of their revamped range of Intermediate Bulk Container (IBC) Bunds.

The company has expanded its offerings, providing customers with a more diverse and complete selection of products at significantly reduced prices. The new IBC Bunds fully comply with UK regulations and have a three-year guarantee on many products.

IBC Bunds are essential containment systems designed to prevent leakage and spillage of hazardous materials stored in Intermediate Bulk Containers. These containers are commonly used to transport and store chemicals, oils, and other potentially harmful substances. Bunds play a crucial role in minimising the risk of environmental damage and ensuring workplace safety.

“We are proud to present our new range of IBC Bunds, which offers our customers an even better selection of high-quality, compliant containment products,” said Richard O’Connor, Marketing Director at First Mats. “We have worked tirelessly to develop this new range that meets industry standards while offering significant cost savings for our customers.”

Customers can conveniently order their new IBC Bunds from the First Mats website or by contacting the award-nominated sales and support team.

About First Mats

First Mats is a Birmingham-based workplace products specialist dedicated to providing highquality products and outstanding customer service. With years of experience in the industry, First Mats offers a comprehensive range of products, including IBC Bunds, safety matting, and a wide variety of workplace essentials. The company is committed to ensuring the highest standards of safety and compliance for businesses across the UK.

For more information, please visit or contact the sales and support team at or by phone at 0121 702 1659.



Peter Dumigan, managing director of the Hultafors Group UK, which owns Snickers Workwear, Solid Gear and Toe Guard safety footwear writes:

Hard-working craftsmen and women put more pressure on their knees than many top athletes. That’s why the risk of knee injuries is far higher among trade professionals and manual workers than other occupations.

Knee injuries are common in the workplace. Sore and swollen knee joints are something that most tradesmen and women suffer from at one time or another and bumps to the knee can be innocuous but troublesome. They’re a perennial problem and can be highly aggravating, but prevention is far easier than cure by taking the proper steps to look after your knees.

The knee is one of the largest and most complex joints in the body and there are different types of injuries that are of particular concern to anyone who works on their knees for any length of time.

The most common ailment is Housemaid’s Knee or Bursitis, which is caused by kneeling for long periods of time and by repetitive knee movements such as crouching down and standing up. Fluid builds up in the Bursa - which is the sack of fluid that cushions the knee joints – causing swelling, soreness and stiffness in the joint.

So what’s the answer?

The most effective knee protection in the workplace is, as you might expect, covered by legislation and PPE certification standards. The EN 14404 Knee Protection Standard deals with the size, force-distribution and penetrationresistance of kneepads.

Type 2, Level 1 protection ensures reliable knee protection for workers in a mobile working environment that involves regular kneeling to perform their job. This protection level is designed to protect the knees in all types of working environments where you find rough, hard and damp surfaces as well as ground debris up to 1 cm thick. The Type 2, Level 0 standard designates effective knee protection for those people who need to work on their knees indoors – but only occasionally.

There have been various types of knee protectors available over the years such as inflexible strapon pads that cut into the back of your knees, causing bruising and potentially impeding blood circulation.

Effective protection really only

comes from combining properly designed Work Trousers that use market-leading fabric technology with a knee protection system that has been thoroughly tested, manufactured and certified using materials that perform to the highest standard day in, day out.

The most effective kneepads are those that work efficiently and in tandem with the design of the Work Trousers they’re used with - staying in precisely the right position all the time to ensure reliable and comfortable knee protection.

Effective kneepads should also feature hard-wearing materials on the outside edges and softer materials in the centre to combine efficient pressure distribution and protection against sharp and rough objects with maximum comfort.

The design should also feature high


sides to prevent your knees from sliding off the kneepads.

This design approach will also ensure the kneepads extremely flexible when you walk, while closing around your knees when you kneel down.

Kneepads that stay in position around the knee is crucial and that’s exactly what you get with the patented Snickers Workwear KneeGuard™ and KneeGuard Pro positioning systems which are complimented by 8 types of kneepads designed for a variety of trades and the demands of different working environments.

Properly designed and certified Trousers and Kneepads will have a pocket design that has special seams which allow the wearer to adjust the kneepads for individualised comfort and protection. Such a design makes the kneepads ‘flex’ when you walk, which also ensures they automatically mould around your knees when you kneel down.

Most workwear manufacturers supply kneepads for their Work Trousers and they vary in price, quality and effectiveness. It will come as no surprise to most that some have no guarantee of comfort or protection.

However, the more discerning professional tradesmen and women – those particularly concerned with their health and welfare on site – will invest in ‘active’ kneepads that are proven to last and protect. The topperforming ‘active’ kneepads take cutting-edge knee protection to a completely new level with materials like the revolutionary D3O® compound.

D3O® is the world’s best impact protection material with a variety of sports and outdoor activity applications. It’s an active and specially engineered rubbery material comprising intelligent molecules which ‘flow’ with you as you move. On shock they lock together to absorb the impact energy which provides highfrequency protection.

The durable D3O® material also features an extremely slow compression rate, ensuring that the kneepads keep their shape during hard work and for long periods of time. What’s more, given that knees are not flat, the ergonomics of D3O® kneepads is important in providing continuous comfort around the profile of your knee.

So when you work a lot on your knees, the market-leading D3O® Kneepads will give you by far the best, long lasting knee protection available. So when you’re buying Work Trousers and especially the Kneepads, look for the ones that are tested and certified for performance, efficiency and protection to deliver marketleading comfort and wellbeing day in day out.

Getting more information on the Snickers Workwear clothing range is easy. You can call the Helpline on 01484 854788; check out and download a digital catalogue or email

Focused on safety. No matter what job you do, it is our duty to protect you. Choose from our extensive line of personal protection equipment for the highest quality safety wear. +44 (0) 1635 254220 Cappture Pro™ Crossovr™ Legacy®

Dust Control Takes Centre Stage: HSE to Conduct Targeted Site Visits This Summer

Industry expert Tim Turney at occupational hygiene and environmental expert Casella, shares how employers can effectively protect their workers from hazardous exposure to dust

Dust in the workplace continues to receive national attention as a hidden killer. The latest Health & Safety Executive (HSE) statistics revealed that 12,000 deaths were reported as a result of lung disease from past exposures at work. Annually, there are an estimated 19,000 new cases of lung or breathing problems believed to be caused or made worse by the working environment.

To support the health and safety of workers, the HSE is planning targeted site visits across the UK this summer, supporting its “Dust Kills” campaign focused on respiratory risks from hazardous dust exposure.

There are a wide range of substances in the workplace that have the potential to cause harm to health if ingested, inhaled, or in contact with skin, often leading to irreversible respiratory diseases, asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).  Inspectors will check if control measures are in place to protect workers from inhaling construction dust, including silica (Respirable Crystalline Silica/RCS) and wood dust.  They will also check that asbestoscontaining materials have been identified and removed or managed where necessary to prevent or reduce exposure.

Under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health regulations (COSHH), the levels of inhalable general dust in the workplace should

not exceed 10mg/m3 and the level of respirable dust must not exceed 4 mg/m3. Employers are advised to control levels constantly to ensure such maximums are never reached. From the thousands of substances that can be found within a working environment, 500 are given specific limits, under Workplace Exposure Limits regulations, commonly referred to as WELs. For example, cobalt metal has an exposure limit of 0.1 mg/ m3 and silica is 0.1 mg/m3, meaning workers can only be exposed to a small amount before the substance potentially becomes hazardous to health. If such substances are identified in the working environment, employers must be familiar with the relevant exposure limit figures.  If a substance does not have a published WEL, it doesn’t mean it is safe and exposure should be limited to as low as is practicably possible.

Personal monitoring in the form of personal dust sampling pumps is the preferred method to measure dust exposure levels in the workplace, allowing employers to remain compliant with government safety standards with a completely accurate record of individual exposure levels.


Personal sampling pumps offer a more enhanced monitoring system that can always provide data records.  Data can be collected throughout seasonal and weather changes - in the summer months, there may be better ventilation, where windows might be open, as opposed to winter months, where lower ventilation can make for a dustier environment.  Based on the findings, further practices for dust control can be modified. Workers may be required to wear additional respiratory protective equipment, or the location may need to be fitted with ventilation systems.  When new processes are introduced,

including new machinery and ventilation equipment systems, the sampling pumps enable tests to keep exposure limits to a minimum. Ultimately, this allows workforces to become more engaged, with more insight than ever on the steps being taken to measure and improve their health in the workplace.

Casella urges businesses to put measures in place to protect employees from hazardous exposure as occupational lung disease continues to impact the lives of workers in Great Britain.
To advertise with Health & Safety Update get in touch with one of the team today 020 805 09659 Health & Safety Update
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