Federation of Master Builders (FMB) is launch its biennial Master Builder Awards
The national competition celebrates the high-quality craftsmanship, exceptional customer service and building excellence delivered by Master Builders across the UK. “The Awards are the Oscars of the building industry showcasing the brilliant work that Master Builders carry out across the UK,” enthuses Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB.” Isuzu UK is thrilled to be providing the grand prize of the awards – an Isuzu D-Max pick-up worth almost £40,000. “The outstanding quality, passion and level of professionalism of Master Builders across the UK, and their dedication to craftsmanship and customer service, are second to none and I am very much looking forward to reviewing this year’s entries,” reveals George Wallis, Head of Marketing, Isuzu UK.
Band of Builders tops £1m of project delivery value
Band of Builders and its community of volunteers and supporters has delivered a milestone £1m worth of projects to help tradespeople battling illness or injury. The estimated delivery value of an average project stands at more than £37,200. And reaching the milestone has involved 772 volunteers giving up their time for free on projects that took a total of 203 days and involved 18,087 hours of labour.
CHAS offers guidance on preventing injuries to muscles, bones & joints
The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) has recently focused on the issue of muscular skeletal disorders (MSD’s) in the construction industry with an inspection campaign. Alex Minett, Head of Products & Markets at CHAS, is urging workers and employers to implement the simple steps that can prevent injuries on site. This includes avoiding manual handling altogether, supplying the right equipment, training the workforce, and the proper implementation of risk assessments.
PPE buyers urged to Check-Select-Protect by the British Safety Industry Federation (BSiF)
Under PPE Regulations, buyers of PPE and safety equipment have a responsibility to ensure that the products they buy are compliant, but many buyers don’t have the knowledge and resources to validate suppliers’ claims. The simple solution is to ensure that your supplier is a member of the BSiF’s Registered Safety Supplier Scheme.
To watch a BSiF video that explains the Check-Select-Protect process visit (153) The BSIF Registered Safety Supplier Scheme: What you need to know when buying PPE & Safety Equipment – YouTube
For a full list of Registered Safety Suppliers, visit www.registeredsafetysupplierscheme.co.uk
Tradespeople lose almost £1,500 a week if they are unable to use their van
Tradespeople lose, on average, £1,427 every working week from lost business when their van is stolen, damaged, or written off, according to research by Direct Line business insurance. More than three quarters (78%) of tradespeople say their ability to work would be negatively impacted by the loss of their van, losing on average £285 every day. Direct Line business insurance provides small courtesy vans as standard to support tradespeople whose van is stolen, damaged, or written off.
For more information on Direct Line’s van insurance products visit: https://www.directlineforbusiness.co.uk/van-insurance
WARMING TO THE TASK
Online interest in home insulation up almost 600%
New analysis from MediaVision has revealed that UK consumers are looking for low-cost ways to keep themselves and their homes warm this winter, using less energy, as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite. Online searches for ‘home insulation’ were up by 590%, for example. The analysis was carried out using the online search expert’s Digital Demand Tracker tool that analyses UK search data four times faster than any other platform.
EASY AS EPC
UK homeowners speeding up energy efficiency journey to dodge surging bills
The latest research from NatWest and S&P Global has revealed that almost half (40%) of consumers looking to buy a property in the next decade considered a property’s EPC rating a very important factor – a 10 percentage point increase year on year. The Greener Homes Attitude Tracker found that around half of homeowners stated that the rise in the cost of living had made them more likely to implement energy saving measures over the next year. Over two thirds (68%) plan to upgrade their property over the next 10 years in a bid to reduce energy bills. This stat has grown by 16 percentage points since last summer (52%).
Could you be the Johnstone’s Painter of the Year 2022?
Any projects completed from January to December 2022 that have used PPG coatings either on new works, refurbishments or redecoration can be entered, and there are no restrictions on the size of the project. Professional painters and decorators can submit as many projects as they want, with each entry submitted on a separate entry form before the closing date of 16th December 2022. The awards ceremony will be hosted at the spectacular Royal Hall in Harrogate, on 6th May 2023.
For further information visit www.johnstonespoty.com
RIGHT ON COURSE
Keystone Lintels and Keyfix are supporting apprentice bricklayers
The Mentor Me initiative is an addition to a successful skills-enhancing scheme run by specialist masonry contractor Lyons & Annoot. Mentor Me offers a host of theoretical and practical learning opportunities in specialisms related to the high-performance masonry solutions offered by Keyfix and Keystone Lintels. “Mentor Me is a very detailed training programme,” explains John Duffin, Managing Director at Keyfix. “It covers a wide range of masonry building skills and techniques.”
UK safe digging industry experiences a ‘searching surge’ reveals LSBUD
Record-breaking numbers of people in the UK are checking for underground pipes and cables before they start digging projects, according to Line Search Before you Dig (LSBUD). There were over 33,500 new registrations on LSBUD’s central search portal between January and September. This represents an 18 percent increase over the same time period last year and is 37 percent up on 2020, highlighting how much more committed the UK has become to safe digging.
For more information about LSBUD, visit http://www.lsbud.co.uk/
Real benefits to joining new Polypipe Building Products network
Polypipe Underfloor Heating’s Approved Engineer (AE) programme will give members access to expert advice and extra support on design and quotation – with direct contacts on hand from the manufacturer’s team. There will also be unique training opportunities covering all aspects of underfloor heating installation, from auto balancing manifolds to smart controls. As an approved installer your customers will be reassured that you have the backing of the UK’s market-leading manufacturer and supplier of underfloor heating products.
STOCK AND TRADE
The Construction Products Association provides its latest insights on product availability
All regions are reporting the best product availability in two years, according to the CPA, both in the range and volume of products available and delivery/lead times. Availability of bricks has significantly improved and deliveries of aircrete blocks are being managed. Aircrete block manufacturers report strong sales of foundation blocks. While longer delivery times for gas boilers remain and early ordering is recommended, availability is more positive than for some months.
REGISTER OF INTEREST
Cost of rogue plumbers’ poor work revealed
The average cost to put right shoddy plumbing work is £285, according to a new survey by WaterSafe, the UK’s register of approved contractors working with drinking water. The survey, which questioned 2,000 UK consumers, also revealed more than a quarter of people have employed a plumber who did not carry out the task properly. In most cases, they had to employ another plumber to fix the poor work. Director of WaterSafe, Julie Spinks, provides a solution: “If a contractor is a member of WaterSafe, the customer can be reassured they are qualified, belong to an approved contractors’ scheme and carry Public Liability Insurance.”
To view a film that explains the register visit https://bit.ly/3MLOGo6
Prime Minister Sunak must stimulate British productivity
“It has been a very complicated three years for the construction industry and we would caution that with less than two years until the next general election, the previous three years – which saw modest attempts at business enabling policy reforms – need supercharging.” That’s the view of Richard Beresford, chief executive of the National Federation of Builders (NFB). The organisation’s forthcoming manifesto will promote a strategy that increases productivity and unlocks opportunity through fair regulation and long-term thinking.
WELL-BEING AT WORK
British Safety Council is offering free help to SMEs and micros
In the face of pressures following Covid, and in light of a worsening economy, British Safety Council is offering any organisation employing up to 500 staff the chance to get free support to improve the wellbeing of their workplace through a series of free workshops. Any employer with to up to 500 staff can apply here: Keep Thriving Free Workshops | British Safety Council (britsafe.org)
CHECK IT OUT
BT announces new partnership with Checkatrade
Specifically designed for micro-businesses with up to five employees, BT’s partnership network delivers perks to customers across broadband, mobile, connected devices, and digital marketing. Checkatrade members can get discounts on mobile business plans, access to EE’s range of exclusive Smart Benefits as well as Apple Music, Video Data Pass, BT Sport Ultimate, Microsoft 365 Personal or 500 international minutes to call Europe and Business Zone countries from the UK.
Three quarters of small builders support a national retrofit strategy, says FMB
The latest State of Trade Survey from the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) reveals that 74% of members are in favour of the UK Government introducing a long-term plan to reduce energy consumption by making existing homes greener and more energy efficient. The FMB State of Trade Survey, which is released quarterly, is the only survey of its kind to track the experience of small to medium-sized (SME) construction firms in the UK.