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February 8, 2017

Freedom announces launch of new mortgage arm

Freedom Finance has announced today that it has agreed a deal to acquire Sensible Home Finance which will be rebranded as Freedom Mortgages. Freedom Mortgages will continue to be run by Andrew Fisher, the owner of Sensible Home Finance. A new Bridging and Commercial arm has also been created in

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Expansion for J Tomlinson

Construction services company J Tomlinson has moved its West Midlands office from Birmingham to larger premises near Sutton Coldfield. Above: Left to right are: contracts manager Andy Morris; office manager Toni Baker; business development manager Andrea Jones; construction MD Martin Gallagher; and operations director Pete Woods The move follows expansion

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Arcadis wins £30m contract as part of Wakefield strategic team

27 September 2016 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal Wakefield Council has appointed built asset consultancy firm Arcadis to deliver its property and facilities services. The deal is worth an expected £3 million per year over seven years, with the option of a three-year extension.  Arcadis is a part of Wakefield Council’s

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HMOs outperforming all other types of rental property

HMOs outperforming all other types of rental property The latest report from Mortgages for Businesses has revealed that although Vanilla BTL and HMO property offer fairly consistent yields, for the more experienced investor, HMOs are outperforming all other types of rental property averaging just below 10% since 2011. Buy to

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GSA Declares Their New Member on Committee

Mister Struan Robertson has been honored with being selected by GSA to become the newest person to be added to their executive Group Board and will equally be acting as the new Chairman of the company’s Investment Committee. GSA, which specializes in the building of residences for students all over

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Investing in Skills With Safran Nacelles

Safran Nacelles, a technology-driven conglomerate with high-profile focuses as varied and exciting as those of defense, security services and even aerospace technology, has started the second month of the new year well by investing in personnel by putting more than 100 of them forward for the Composites Assured Practitioner Scheme

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New Apprenticeship Academy is launched and welcomes 1000th Apprentice

Northumberland College has launched a new Apprenticeship Academy and welcomed its 1,000th Apprentice. Northumberland College has recently launched its new Apprenticeship Academy that will focus on meeting the needs of Apprentices and their employers. This new Academy sees Apprenticeship Support Officers and Assessors for all subjects working more closely together.

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Chelsea gets backing for major Stamford Bridge development

Hammersmith & Fulham Council have unanimously approved planning permission for Chelsea to redevelop Stamford Bridge. The proposed rebuild to increase capacity to 60,000 was presented in model form at a hearing at Hammersmith Town Hall on Wednesday. The council had already initially recommended that the application be approved and, after a three-hour

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Latest Issue

BDC 318 : Jul 2024

February 8, 2017

Freedom announces launch of new mortgage arm

Freedom Finance has announced today that it has agreed a deal to acquire Sensible Home Finance which will be rebranded as Freedom Mortgages. Freedom Mortgages will continue to be run by Andrew Fisher, the owner of Sensible Home Finance. A new Bridging and Commercial arm has also been created in a bid to bolster the company’s offering in these areas. Brian Brodie, CEO of Freedom Finance, said: “From the moment we started looking for a mortgage & loan broker to join the Freedom Group, we knew that we needed to find an organisation that shared our values and ambition. I believe in SHF we have found a highly respected team with a great business and they will be a hugely valuable addition to Freedom.   This deal enables Freedom to broaden the product range on its platform while becoming a more significant player in the second charge market. We are very excited about the future and believe that together Freedom Finance and Sensible Home Finance will make a significant impact on the consumer finance market.” Andrew Fisher, Owner of Sensible Home Finance, added: “This opportunity represents an exciting new chapter for Sensible Home Finance. We know that by joining the Freedom family we can take our business to the next level. Our customers will benefit from Freedom Finance’s online capabilities, loan platform and unrivalled breadth of finance options. We are confident that we can now help many more customers satisfy their lending needs easily and safely.” Source link

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Expansion for J Tomlinson

Construction services company J Tomlinson has moved its West Midlands office from Birmingham to larger premises near Sutton Coldfield. Above: Left to right are: contracts manager Andy Morris; office manager Toni Baker; business development manager Andrea Jones; construction MD Martin Gallagher; and operations director Pete Woods The move follows expansion in the region on the back of several significant contract wins. “J Tomlinson has worked in the West Midlands for many years, and on the back of a growing portfolio of projects and an increasing reputation in the region, opened an initial base in Birmingham last year,” said J Tomlinson chief executive Mark Davis. “Since then, as a result of further expansion, the company has outgrown the space and we are delighted to have opened a new headquarters at Canwell near Sutton Coldfield, which will allow us to continue to serve our existing clients and to work with additional public and private clients in the West Midlands as we continue to broaden our portfolio.” The new office is headed by J Tomlinson construction managing director Martin Gallagher. J Tomlinson is based in Nottingham and works across the West Midlands, East Midlands and Yorkshire. It increased its turnover from £54m in 2014 to £84m in 2016 and now employs more than 400 people. J Tomlinson is working on a number of on-going contracts in the West Midlands, including being appointed to a four-year framework contract by Warwickshire Police and West Mercia Police which is now part of a joint property vehicle with four other public sector bodies known as Place Partnerships, covering servicing, maintenance, reactive repairs and minor building works. Last year, the firm won a five-year contract to replace kitchens and bathrooms in around 1,600 properties in Birmingham, Coventry, Stoke, Walsall and Wolverhampton for housing organisation Midland Heart, and has a gas servicing and repair contract with housing provider and social organisation Bromford, providing services to over 10,000 properties. The firm is also constructing a new 65-bed care home for Hamberley Development and a new building for Sutton Coldfield Conservative Club on the same site in Sutton Coldfield.           This article was published on 1 Sep 2016 (last updated on 1 Sep 2016). Source link

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Boiler sales increase is positive news for the industry, says HHIC

Boiler sales increase is positive news for the industry, says HHIC Published:  26 April, 2016 Figures released by HHIC show that the number of gas boilers sold in the UK, in the first quarter of 2016, grew by 1.9%. Boiler sales increased for this period from 427,533 in 2015 to 435,612 in 2016. “The increase may only be small, but it is positive news for the industry,” said Stewart Clements, director at the Heating and Hotwater Industry Council, HHIC. “Sales in January and February were very similar to 2015. The rise occurred in March, and whilst the fundamental drivers which impact on boiler sales have remained stable, the data available to date for ECO suggests that volumes have begun to pick up and so may help explain the increase.” Source link

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Arcadis wins £30m contract as part of Wakefield strategic team

27 September 2016 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal Wakefield Council has appointed built asset consultancy firm Arcadis to deliver its property and facilities services. The deal is worth an expected £3 million per year over seven years, with the option of a three-year extension.  Arcadis is a part of Wakefield Council’s strategic partnership team to deliver its property and facilities management services. It will work alongside Engie, the council’s recently appointed external partner to deliver its property and facilities services. It will also deliver project and professional services. Wakefield sought a partnership “which will help secure jobs for local people and enable staff, customers and services to benefit from private sector expertise and investment”. Arcadis will be supporting the council in its drive to generate up to £27 million in savings this year. It is hoped the appointment will help support economic growth in the area as well as helping the Council to improve infrastructure, create new jobs for the people of Wakefield, according to Arcadis.   Bill Green, Arcadis head of strategic partnerships, said: “Councils are under more pressure than ever before to deliver better outcomes using fewer resources, and that looks set to continue. “With less money available, public sector organisations are turning to long term partners to optimise the benefits from combining public and private sector capabilities.” Source link

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HMOs outperforming all other types of rental property

HMOs outperforming all other types of rental property The latest report from Mortgages for Businesses has revealed that although Vanilla BTL and HMO property offer fairly consistent yields, for the more experienced investor, HMOs are outperforming all other types of rental property averaging just below 10% since 2011. Buy to let product numbers grew more slowly in the second quarter of 2016 compared to Q1. Products increased by an average of just 75 in Q2 compared to an increase of 142 in Q1. Much of the rise in Q2 was due to lenders creating separate offerings with differing stress test calculations for personal and limited company borrowers. The trend for remortgaging continued whereas purchase activity fell back to pre-Q1 levels when investors surged to get purchases completed ahead of the introduction of the SDLT surcharge. The average loan to value of HMOs increased from just 62% in Q1 to 75% in Q2 suggesting that investors are keen to stretch borrowing on this asset class due to the consistently high returns on offer. However, looking at the data over the last five years, LTVs on HMOs have remained fairly steady, averaging 69%. LTVs on vanilla BTL property have also remained steady, averaging 67% since the index began in 2011. LTVs for multi-units and semi-commercial property have travelled a more uneven path and, as might be expected with these more commercially underwritten properties, average LTVs are lower. The average LTV of a multi-unit stood at just 56% in Q2 compared to an average of 64% over the last five years. Average LTVs for semi-commercial property was 60% in Q2 2016 – the same as the five-year average. David Whittaker, managing director of Mortgages for Business said: “We now have five years’ worth of data against which investors can benchmark their portfolios. Both Vanilla BTL and HMO property offer fairly consistent yields. For the more cautious investor and for those who like a mix of risk within their portfolio, 6.1% average yield on a standard BTL still represents a good return. And for the more experienced investor, HMOs certainly perform better than all other types of rental property averaging just below 10% since 2011.” Average yields on multi-units grew to a very positive 9.5%, well above the five year average of 7.4% demonstrating that landlords can often achieve greater yields by taking on more complex property types. Semi-commercial property performed less well than expected considering these buildings are not subject to the residential stamp duty surcharge. Going forward it will be interesting to see whether any trends develop as more investors are expected to move into this niche. Source link

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GSA Declares Their New Member on Committee

Mister Struan Robertson has been honored with being selected by GSA to become the newest person to be added to their executive Group Board and will equally be acting as the new Chairman of the company’s Investment Committee. GSA, which specializes in the building of residences for students all over the country, is extremely proud to welcome such an experienced member of the housing and building industry through their doors. Indeed, with the greater demand for student places at university also comes the even greater and more pressing increase for building and designing new accommodation sites in order to house them. It is therefore clear that much-needed investment needs to take place in order to ensure that companies like GSA can handle the various demands for accommodation space in the years to come. With 20,000 individual accommodation residence space laid out across an expanse of no less than seven different countries, a business like GSA is forever committed to the idea of developing new and alternative forms of housing and construction that is able to cater and satisfy the increased demand for student space at campuses all over the world. Having succeeded the procurement to build 2,500 new beds in Japan, GSA are clearly paving the way forward as a prime example of a business that prides itself with over-seas projects and investment initiatives. Indeed, the building business has projects and initiatives planned for the year in countries as varied as Australia as well as Japan, and it is clear that with $1.5 billion in its investment strategy, Mister Struan Robertson will have his hands full in terms of helping to develop the company’s investing initiatives even more extensively than ever before. With a wide range of experience in investing in the hospitality sector, such as hotel and short-stay accommodation, Mister Struan Robertson is clearly very pleased to take on the challenge of becoming GSA’s new chief of investment strategy in the years to come.

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Investing in Skills With Safran Nacelles

Safran Nacelles, a technology-driven conglomerate with high-profile focuses as varied and exciting as those of defense, security services and even aerospace technology, has started the second month of the new year well by investing in personnel by putting more than 100 of them forward for the Composites Assured Practitioner Scheme (also known as the CAP). This initiative is designed to help assess workers’ own input against the development and construction strategies of the company itself, in order to determine what can be done to ensure long-lasting productivity between employer and employee. In order for this to work, employees complete a number of tests and initiatives, and are then awarded a criteria (Bronze, Silver or Gold) that the governing body feels that they meet. This ought to be of particular use to the building and construction industry, which has seen numerous reports in recent times of a shortage of competency and skill in those specific industries. It is therefore essential, one might argue, for the future of the industry itself that such tests such CAP be carried out by more companies in these sectors than ever so that these can determine what aspects they need to improve and work on in order to maintain the amount of skilled workforce in the United Kingdom. Through conducting such initiatives and assessment sessions as these, companies like Safran Nacelles will be given a greater idea of what they need to do in order to progress themselves into the future of the 21st Century. Indeed, their decision to put the Burnley branch to the test was an ambitious and brave move for the company to make, and Composites head of Safran Nacelles Mister Graham Banks has said that the scheme will be used in order to determine who will be the future leading forces of the company in the long term. It is a strategy that companies from all over the country are being encouraged to adopt.

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New Apprenticeship Academy is launched and welcomes 1000th Apprentice

Northumberland College has launched a new Apprenticeship Academy and welcomed its 1,000th Apprentice. Northumberland College has recently launched its new Apprenticeship Academy that will focus on meeting the needs of Apprentices and their employers. This new Academy sees Apprenticeship Support Officers and Assessors for all subjects working more closely together. Susan Goldstein, Director of the Apprenticeship Academy said: “Apprenticeships offer a fantastic opportunity for employers to recruit and further develop staff with the skills and expertise needed for their organisation’s success.” “For individuals, regardless of their age or background, apprenticeships offer access to structured industry-standard learning and qualifications. Successful apprenticeships are delivered by a robust and cohesive partnership between employer, apprentice and the College. The Apprenticeship Academy will ensure that each partner is clear about their responsibilities and opportunities within this process. Our aim is to support as many Apprentices as we can in achieving their career and educational goals and at the same time help employers to meet current and future skills needs.” Northumberland College is in a unique position to meet skills needs, offering as it does, more than 40 different Apprenticeships at Level 2, 3 and 4, one of the largest ranges of apprenticeship subjects in the region. The College has invested more than £10m in modern learning facilities, plus recently received further funding from the North East Local Enterprise Partnership for a £2.5m science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) centre, which will open later this year. Susan says: “We are constantly reviewing our offer to make sure that it meets the needs of apprentices and contributes to the economic well- being of our region.” National figures show that for every £1 of government investment in Level 2 or 3 apprenticeships, there is typically a return of £26 to £28 and that someone with a Higher Apprentice (Level 4) could earn £150,000 more on average over their lifetime.  The Apprenticeship Academy, working in partnership with the College’s Business Training Solutions team provide bespoke information, advice and support to employers and their Apprentices. With a history of delivering training over the last 60 years the College has now recruited it’s 1000th Apprentice, April Halligan.  April, aged 18 from Fenham, Newcastle, is a Bricklaying Apprentice with Newcastle City Council.  Newcastle City Council Apprenticeship Manager, Paul Maddison said: “Building and Commercial Enterprise and indeed Newcastle City Council as a wider organisation, has supported apprentices for many years and boasts a successful track record of providing opportunities for young people to develop skills and secure employment.  “More recently, in partnership with Northumberland College, to increase employment opportunities for local 16-18 year olds, April Halligan has been part of a new Apprentice Pathway Programme that has been developed to provide further placement opportunities for young people within the City, in particular those Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET).”  April said: “The programme has provided an excellent opportunity, opening new doors to my career. I’ve improved my skills and experienced different workplaces including maintenance and building sites. I’m a lot closer to my goal of becoming a qualified brick layer and gaining full-time employment thanks to this experience and the support from Northumberland College.”  April’s Apprenticeship Assessor, Ged Tait, plays a pivotal role of working with Construction Apprentices including April, on site and at College has a primary role in supporting the learners.  He said: “An assessor’s job includes supporting Apprentices while they are at College and in the workplace, by encouraging them and giving feedback to improve their performance and enhance their skills.  “Every eight weeks I go out to visit my apprentices for assessment and progress reviews and the learners are able to contact me any time if there is a problem relating to their NVQ qualification.  “April is the first female apprentice bricklayer I have worked with. She is making good progress with her qualification and I have received great feedback from her mentors at Newcastle City Works.”  Graham Charlton, Northumberland College’s Brickwork tutor said: “April is a model student with a 100% attendance record for her theory, practical and functional skills lessons, she has a fantastic attitude towards her programme of study, both in the classroom and workshop. She has settled in with the group right from day one.”  The College is also supporting employers through a range of Government changes to Apprenticeships. One key change is the move towards the use of Apprenticeship Standards.  Standards show what an apprentice will be doing in a particular job and the skills they need to demonstrate, in order to be considered competent. Standards were developed by employer groups called Trailblazers.  Another change, from 6 April 2017, is the government’s Apprenticeship Levy. This will see all employers with an annual payroll over £3million, contribute to apprenticeship training at a rate of 0.5%.  The College’s Business Training Solutions team is currently offering a series of free events for employers to guide them through the Levy and other Apprenticeship changes.  Employers wishing to find out more about apprenticeship training and the Levy may contact the College’s Business Training Solutions team on 0170 841 268 or email training@northland.ac.uk

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Boon Edam provides secure and stylish entry solution technology for The Francis Crick Institute

Boon Edam, a global market leader in entry solutions has unveiled a quality, engineered solution technology for a brand new, state of the art building in St Pancras; now home to The Francis Crick Institute. The biomedical discovery organisation, required an entry solution to seamlessly integrate with its new building’s modern design. The research centre, a flagship for UK biomedical science and one of Europe’s largest biomedical research facilities, is a base for 1500 scientists and staff, whilst housing technology to help create discoveries for illnesses such as cancer and heart disease. Therefore, the entry solution required advanced security to ensure staff, visitors and equipment could be kept safe and protected, whilst complimenting the design. With 140 years’ experience with manufacturing entry solutions, Boon Edam ensures its products technology meet the strictest quality standards. The building is serviced by five Automatic Crystal Tourniket’s. This product was selected following an assessment of everyday use including analysing the number of visitors and size of luggage expected to be carried into the building whilst creating a user friendly and attractive gateway into the building supporting the green principles that were embedded into its design and carried through to its operation. The revolving doors use a combination of laminated and toughened glass, which results in a reduction in the traditionally framed elements of the door. The minimalistic, all glass revolving doors provided a stylish solution which complimented the new building’s façade. They also met the security requirements; with each Crystal Tourniket supplied with an external night locking door. Finished in stainless steel, the additional feature provided a further layer of security for the building. The night locking door was mounted onto a stainless-steel track fixed to the glass soffit and provided with fully integrated locks. Ian Goldsmith, Head of Sales at Boon Edam Ltd commented, “We are thrilled to have provided the entry solutions for this building. The cross-border project between Boon Edam BV (Netherlands) and Boon Edam UK was successful in meeting the precise requirements of The Francis Crick Institute. The Crystal Tourniket’s have provided the new building with the secure, eye catching solution desired whilst utilising the environmental benefits of installing a revolving door.”

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Chelsea gets backing for major Stamford Bridge development

Hammersmith & Fulham Council have unanimously approved planning permission for Chelsea to redevelop Stamford Bridge. The proposed rebuild to increase capacity to 60,000 was presented in model form at a hearing at Hammersmith Town Hall on Wednesday. The council had already initially recommended that the application be approved and, after a three-hour meeting attended by Blues chairman Bruce Buck and director Eugene Tenenbaum, permission was granted for the development. The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan now has 14 days to call in the verdict, should he wish to, on a stadium expected to cost more than £500m and take three years to build. We are grateful that planning permission was granted for the re development of our historic home. In a statement, Chelsea said: “We are grateful that planning permission was granted for the redevelopment of our historic home. “The committee decision does not mean that work can begin on site. This is just the latest step, although a significant one, that we have to take before we can commence work, including obtaining various other permissions.” Stamford Bridge’s current capacity is 41,600+, making it the ninth largest club ground in England behind Manchester United, Arsenal, West Ham, Manchester City, Liverpool, Sunderland, Newcastle United and Aston Villa. Rather than move site and build from scratch, though, the club have decided that redeveloping Stamford Bridge is their preferred option. he main point of discussion is likely to be the ground’s proximity to transport, with the new prospective capacity of 60,000 making the distance of underground and railway lines paramount and the main challenge facing the project. The project will also mean that the club will need to find a temporary home due to the complex nature of the build, with a lowering of the arena and excavation likely to achieve the desired capacity on the 12-acre site.

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