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February 14, 2018

Top tips on staging your home to ensure a faster sale

Top tips on staging your home to ensure a faster sale Traditionally beige is the ‘recommended colour’ if you want to give your house ‘blank canvas’ appeal to a potential purchaser Staging is preparing your home to be seen at its best by potential buyers. It can help

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High yield bond funds suffer redemptions

©Dreamstime High yield bond funds suffered their first redemptions since June last week in a sign that investor nerves have been rattled by the rapid drop in the price of crude. The asset class, which had enjoyed a remarkable recovery after a turbulent first quarter, counted $1.9bn of withdrawals in

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MPs scold CarillionAmey over poor state of military homes

14 July 2016 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal The Ministry of Defence and contractor CarillionAmey are “badly letting down service families” by providing them with poor accommodation and often leaving them without basic requirements, according to a report by an influential body of MPs.   The Public Accounts Committee describes CarillionAmey’s performance

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Didcot: Joint statement from HSE and Thames Valley Police

“RWE has today presented a plan to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and Thames Valley Police (TVP) to commence work on the collapsed debris, ready to recover the missing men. “Starting today, large equipment and people will be arriving on site to start work to enable the recovery operation

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'Warmer, greener homes' with district heating

‘Warmer, greener homes’ with district heating Published:  30 June, 2016 Use of district heating should be increased in the UK to improve heating efficiency and affordability, according to a new report from energy firm SSE. According to the report ‘Sustainable Heating: Reducing Costs, Improving Comfort and Lowering Carbon Emissions’, district

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Iran nuclear buying goes on, say Germans

©Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz headquarters in Cologne Iran has attempted to acquire nuclear technology in Germany even after the atomic accord it reached with western powers in Vienna last July, according to the German domestic intelligence agency. The annual report of the Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz (BfV) said that

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Sika Saved a Towering Landmark

Sika has supplied a concrete repair system to refurbish the façade of Chatterton Water Tower in Spalding, a long-standing feature of the area’s landscape. The 30 metres high construction overlooks the local bus station and its distinctive tulip fascia makes it stand out. The construction has existed for 63 years;

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BDC 318 : Jul 2024

February 14, 2018

Top tips on staging your home to ensure a faster sale

Top tips on staging your home to ensure a faster sale Traditionally beige is the ‘recommended colour’ if you want to give your house ‘blank canvas’ appeal to a potential purchaser Staging is preparing your home to be seen at its best by potential buyers. It can help your property sell faster, and it can add thousands of pounds to your property’s value. If you’re planning to sell your home, then ‘staging’ it can give the process a real boost. Paula Higgins, CEO of HomeOwners Alliance explains how: Declutter This doesn’t necessarily mean hiring a skip. Strike a balance between emphasising the fantastic living space on offer and allowing some touches that show your house is a home. Fix it Look for the little flaws you don’t see any more: perhaps an old picture-frame hole in the hall wall, a broken tile, a well-worn patch of carpet. They’re not huge jobs, but they may put off a potential buyer who doesn’t want to have to fix your snag list. Clean it Make everything sparkle, remembering to remove limescale, clean tile grout, and wax any wooden floors. Clean windows inside and out. Don’t forget your house needs to smell good too. A bad smell is the single biggest turn off for potential buyers. Find and fix the source of the smell, ensure you clear drains, wash out your bins and air the kitchen to shift old cooking odours. If you’re a smoker place bowls of vinegar around the house. Leave these for three days, then remove and open your windows. The vinegar smell will disappear quickly, taking the stale cigarette whiff with it. Beige it Traditionally beige is the ‘recommended colour’ if you want to give your house ‘blank canvas’ appeal to a potential purchaser. Although this still works very well, grey is the new ‘on trend’ colour. If grey doesn’t work for you then white is always your friend. Both white and grey are inoffensive, very 2016, and will make it easier for your buyer to move in and use the rooms immediately and a neutral colour makes rooms lighter and larger. Monty Don it Gardens can be a huge draw for potential buyers. As with the interior of your home, you want your garden to be neat and tidy. Weed, cut back bushes, clean the patio/decking and any garden furniture, and cut the grass. A few flowers in pots, particularly in the front garden to boost kerb appeal, will make it as easy as possible for people to see themselves enjoying this space. Cast an eye over the kitchen Kitchens are important. More often than not, a kitchen is worth more per square foot than any other room. It can make the difference when buyers are unsure. Unless your kitchen is in a real state, it wouldn’t make financial sense to replace it when you have the costs of moving house to contend with – and some buyers will want to put in their kitchen anyway. However, resurfacing of worktops is worth investigating to give an instant lift.  Also, remove any bulky kitchen appliances, and declutter the surfaces. Cash in if you have the cash Think about any obvious conversions that could be made to your property: perhaps adapting a garage or a loft into a gym or an office or a spare room. If you have the money to carry out the conversion, you’ll see the benefits of the increased value to your home rather than gifting it to the new owners. If you don’t have the funds to do the work yourself, you can make your property more desirable by securing planning permission prior to putting your property on the market. Finally, know when to leave it to the experts Let your estate agent do their job. They know what to say (and what not to say), they’ll highlight and downplay as appropriate, and they have experience answering tricky questions. However, you can make their job easier by placing fresh flowers around the house, a bowl of colourful fruit in the kitchen, and fresh towels in the bathroom. But go for a walk during the viewings. Source link

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High yield bond funds suffer redemptions

©Dreamstime High yield bond funds suffered their first redemptions since June last week in a sign that investor nerves have been rattled by the rapid drop in the price of crude. The asset class, which had enjoyed a remarkable recovery after a turbulent first quarter, counted $1.9bn of withdrawals in the week to August 3, according to data provider EPFR. It marked the largest withdrawal in seven weeks and drained junk bond fund inflows for the year to less than $1bn. More On this topic IN Markets Scrutiny of the energy sector has come to the fore after US oil prices briefly dipped below $40 a barrel, sliding into bear market territory. The threat of rising inventories of gasoline — which slipped after three successive weeks of increases — as the driving season in the US winds to an end has weighed on the energy sector. Bonds issued by a swath of lowly-rated groups have weakened since oil began its slow and seemingly silent decline. While West Texas Intermediate, the US oil marker, has advanced for two consecutive days — the first time it has done so since mid-July — it remains 19 per cent below the year’s peak. Debt sold by oil exploration group Murphy Oil, offshore drilling servicer Rowan Companies and oil and gas servicer Weatherford International, have all weakened over the past two weeks, data from electronic bond trading platform MarketAxess shows. “People watch oil pretty closely with high yield given what has happened over the past 18 months,” said Marc Bushallow, managing director of fixed income at Manning & Napier. Mr Bushallow noted that the drop in bond prices was far more moderate than slides seen in January and February, when fears swelled that many junk-rated energy groups were on the verge of default. “You have not yet seen a lot of forced sellers,” he added. “It remains pretty well bid on a day like today when equities are unchanged.” The search for income sent buyers instead to US corporate and emerging market debt funds, which have been appealing destinations for foreign investors. Bond-buying programmes from the Bank of Japan and European Central Bank, as well as fresh stimulus from the Bank of England on Thursday, has depressed sovereign bond yields across the globe and driven many investors out of their home markets. Emerging market bond funds counted $2.1bn of fresh additions in the last week, lifting inflows over the past five weeks to $16.4bn, according to the EPFR data. Funds that invest in highly rated US corporate bonds counted $735m of inflows in the last week, more than doubling the prior week’s haul and extending its streak of inflows to 10 weeks. European equity funds remained under pressure as investors assess the fallout from Britain’s vote to leave the EU. Investors withdrew $3.9bn from funds invested in stocks across the continent, lifting outflows since the Brexit vote to $24.5bn. eric.platt@ft.com Twitter: @ericgplatt Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2016. You may share using our article tools. Please don’t cut articles from FT.com and redistribute by email or post to the web. Source link

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MPs scold CarillionAmey over poor state of military homes

14 July 2016 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal The Ministry of Defence and contractor CarillionAmey are “badly letting down service families” by providing them with poor accommodation and often leaving them without basic requirements, according to a report by an influential body of MPs.   The Public Accounts Committee describes CarillionAmey’s performance as “totally unacceptable” and says it is right that the MoD is considering terminating the contract.   In some cases, warns the committee, frustration with the failure to carry out repairs “may be driving some highly trained personnel to leave the military, wasting the investment made in them”.   Among its recommendations to the government, the committee says the MoD must explain what it will do to improve the way it consults with families “when setting policies and agreeing contracts that will impact upon their lives”.   It should ensure CarillionAmey or any replacement contractor “meets or exceeds” its estate maintenance obligations for the lifetime of the contract.   Steps must be taken to ensure that future contractors are capable of delivering the agreed service at the agreed price, and that an effective penalty/incentive regime should be put in place.   The MoD should also write to the committee promptly when a decision is made whether or not to continue the contract with CarillionAmey, setting out the evidence on performance supporting this decision.   Daniel Easthope, managing director of CarillionAmey, said: “Our housing service is now performing well against key contract indicators following the delivery of an aggressive improvement plan, and we are sustaining that performance. We are also working closely with the Defence Infrastructure Organisation to improve service families’ experience by delivering improvements to the housing stock and through engaging with service families and the family federations to discuss how we can further support their needs.”   Source link

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New restaurant & private members club on the menu for Mayfair's Shepherd Market

Shepherd Market Holdings, represented by international real estate advisor Savills, has let 2 – 4 Shepherd Street in Mayfair, London to ITALIANS CLUBHOUSE LTD. The privately owned Italian operator plans to create a new public restaurant and private members club at the property. ITALIANS CLUBHOUSE LTD is backed by i2i (Italians to Italians), the venture capital firm of a leading London- based Italian family office. The operator, which is currently launching similar venues in Notting Hill and Shoreditch, will develop an Italian wine bar managed by the award-winning Vini Italiani plus a ground floor restaurant and an invitation only members club on the first floor. The second floor will feature gaming facilities, private dining options, a barber, tailor and spirits lounge. Matteo Cerri, CEO of i2i, comments: “We are extremely excited about this latest venue which we wish to transform into our group’s ‘gem’. ITALIANS CLUBHOUSE aims to be a place where you can fully immerge yourself in the quality of an Italian lifestyle, whether for a business meeting or for relaxing. It is a place where our successful format #EatDrinkLoveItalian can be enjoyed every day.” Oliver Green, director in the Central London retail team at Savills, comments: “Shepherd Market has a rapidly growing reputation as an established hub for high quality, independent restaurants, clubs, retail stores and art galleries in Mayfair. This new venue will complement the existing retail and leisure mix well, and we are now working with our client to let the final two available units.” Thomas Pain & Company acted for ITALIANS CLUBHOUSE LTD. Source link

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Didcot: Joint statement from HSE and Thames Valley Police

“RWE has today presented a plan to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and Thames Valley Police (TVP) to commence work on the collapsed debris, ready to recover the missing men. “Starting today, large equipment and people will be arriving on site to start work to enable the recovery operation to resume at the weekend, sooner if possible. “Progress with the plan over the coming days will be closely monitored by HSE and TVP. “Our priority remains the recovery of the missing men so they can be returned to their families and to understand what caused this incident. Specialist officers from Thames Valley Police continue to support the families and are providing them with regular updates on the progress of this work.” (ends) Source link

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'Warmer, greener homes' with district heating

‘Warmer, greener homes’ with district heating Published:  30 June, 2016 Use of district heating should be increased in the UK to improve heating efficiency and affordability, according to a new report from energy firm SSE. According to the report ‘Sustainable Heating: Reducing Costs, Improving Comfort and Lowering Carbon Emissions’, district heating can increase homeowner comfort levels, cut carbon emissions and create jobs and economic value for the UK. District heating systems use hot water to heat multiple homes from a central boiler, rather than each individual home producing its own heating requirements. Advocates of the technology claim it is greener, producing considerably less carbon emissions than more conventional forms of heat, and also a more energy efficient way to keep homes warm. Nathan Sanders, managing director of SSE Enterprise Utilities, said: “This report comprehensively tells us the impact district heating systems can make on residents and their homes from the jobs created through its construction, the improvements in home comfort and the positive benefits to address fuel poverty. “And, of course, district heating is more efficient than individual boilers because for every unit of primary energy both electricity and heat are generated – thereby delivering more energy ‘bang for buck’ and significantly reducing emissions in the process. As we continue efforts to decarbonise the heat sector, we believe district heating will play a leading role and we hope today’s report is a helpful contribution to the debate about how we heat our homes in the future.” The report highlighted examples of where district heating is already proving beneficial to local communities. In 2012, for example, Cube Housing Association partnered with SSE to install the new heating system at the Wyndford estate in Maryhill, Glasgow. It aimed to improve comfort levels and the energy efficiency of almost 1,800 homes; mainly social housing with a small number of privately-owned houses. The estate has seen a 62% reduction in CO2 emissions since district heating was installed. The report also says tenants and homeowners of Cube Housing Association, at the Wyndford estate in Maryhill, Glasgow, not only had warmer homes and lower bills, but less worries about making ends meet. Working with the University of Edinburgh, the report concluded: 81% of tenants and 90% of owners said they felt warmer with a new district heating system 60% fewer tenants and 80% fewer owners reported going to bed early to keep warm Tenants cutting back on food expenditure fell 50% Tenants borrowing money for heating fell 60% Tenants putting off paying other bills due to heating costs fell 40%. Construction of the scheme also delivered a £10m boost to UK Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to the report, supporting 176 job-years of employment. David MacKenzie, Cube Housing Association director, said: “The district heating scheme is already making a huge difference in Wyndford. Our tenants and factored homeowners are enjoying the benefits of living in warmer, more energy-efficient homes and saving money on their fuel bills. That puts more money in people’s pockets in these tough economic times and helps us address fuel poverty at the same time. We are delighted to have worked with SSE on this innovative project.” As well as contributing to climate change targets, district heating can also play a central role in making progress towards the UK’s 2020 energy efficiency target to reduce energy consumption by 20% compared to 2007 levels. Tim Rotheray Director of The Association for Decentralised Generation, said: “Well designed and operated district heating can make a tangible difference to our communities. This scheme from SSE shows how cutting energy waste can lift residents from fuel poverty; improving their comfort while also cutting carbon. The Scottish government has an opportunity to develop a regulatory investment framework to create more schemes just like this one that can change many more Scottish householders’ lives.”   Source link

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Iran nuclear buying goes on, say Germans

©Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz headquarters in Cologne Iran has attempted to acquire nuclear technology in Germany even after the atomic accord it reached with western powers in Vienna last July, according to the German domestic intelligence agency. The annual report of the Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz (BfV) said that illegal Iranian attempts to procure technology “continued on a quantitatively high level by international standards” in Germany in 2015. “This was particularly the case for merchandise that could be deployed in the field of nuclear technology,” the report said. There was also an increase in Iranian efforts to buy parts for missiles that could be fitted with nuclear warheads, it added. In last year’s landmark agreement, Iran agreed to roll back its nuclear programme in exchange for the lifting of western economic sanctions, ending a 12-year stand-off with the west. So far, the signs are that Iran has kept up its side of the bargain, shipping thousands of pounds of enriched uranium — almost all of its stockpile — to Russia and deactivating its heavy water reactor at Arak. In January, the UN nuclear watchdog certified that Iran had fulfilled its initial commitments under the agreement and some sanctions were lifted as a result — although Tehran has complained that it has not received the economic benefits it was initially promised. Tehran has always insisted that its nuclear programme was for peaceful civilian means. Iranian officials could not be contacted for comment on Thursday, a public holiday in the Islamic Republic. The disclosures by the BfV will be welcomed by opponents of the nuclear deal, such as Israel, which says Iran cannot be trusted to give up its ambition of building an atomic bomb. A more detailed assessment of Iran’s activities in Germany was contained in the annual report of the BfV in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s most populous state, which was published on Monday. It said that counter-intelligence agents had recorded 141 attempts to acquire technology for “proliferation” purposes in 2015 — nearly twice as many as in the previous year. Two-thirds of these — or nearly 100 — were traced to Iranian entities. But the report said Iran’s main focus was to procure parts for its missile programme, rather than for nuclear purposes. German officials have used that detail to stress that Iran is not necessarily in violation of last year’s nuclear accord. “The agreement with Iran was about nuclear capabilities,” said one. “It has nothing to do with the ballistic missiles that Iran is in possession of.” There was also an increase in Iranian efforts to buy parts for missiles that could be fitted with nuclear warheads – Annual report of the Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz Neither report gives a breakdown of how much of the 2015 activity took place before or after the summer deal, but they make clear that some attempts to acquire equipment were made after July. A UN resolution agreed as part of the July deal called upon Iran not to carry out work on missiles designed to deliver nuclear weapons. In March, Iran provoked Israeli protests after its Revolutionary Guard conducted a new round of ballistic missiles tests. The BfV in North Rhine-Westphalia said Iran often targeted so-called “dual-use” technology that could be used for both civilian and military purposes. It said Iranians, as well as other “proliferation” states such as Pakistan, were acquiring merchandise under the pretext of “deploying it in civilian research, or in the oil, gas and steel industries”, and were often using “forged end-use certificates, or other seemingly official documents”. The BfV also said that Iranian agents often used front companies in countries such as the United Arab Emirates, Turkey and China to conceal the final destination of the merchandise. Volker Beck, a German MP from the opposition Green party who is also chairman of the German-Israeli Parliamentary Group, said the BfV reports were disturbing. “If we can ensure that Iran is not trying to obtain nuclear weapons, then last year’s deal with Tehran is a success,” he said. “But if the agreement is not working then that presents a big danger for the security of the region, of Israel, and of Germany.” Additional reporting by Stefan Wagstyl Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2016. You may share using our article tools. Please don’t cut articles from FT.com and redistribute by email or post to the web. Source link

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Is the UK’s housing crisis more than a supply and demand issue?

Anybody who follows the news must be aware that the UK is in the throes of a housing crisis.   Press and broadcast media lead on it, politicians debate it and Prime Minister Theresa May has declared building more homes to be her personal mission.   She did this because there’s near universal agreement that the driver of high house prices, which are pushing home ownership beyond the reach of young people, is lack of supply. The consensus is that it’s a question of demand outstripping supply and therefore we have to build more homes.   I say `near universal agreement’ because there was some debate about this supply and demand analysis in the last quarter of 2017.   On the one hand, economist John Kay argued powerfully that, to fix a `broken’ UK housing market, we have to expand house building and, like any good economist, he could quote some compelling figures to support his case.   He pointed out that immigration has driven an acceleration in population growth while the size of households has been declining. To meet that underlying growth in demand and to replace ageing stock, Kay reckons we need to be building at least 300,000 houses a year – a figure that hasn’t been achieved for the past 40 years and, in fact, in the last decade we’ve only managed about half of that.   Kay says that the inevitable result of this supply and demand mismatch is a price hike and, lo and behold, since the early 1990s, house prices have more than doubled in real terms, despite the 2008 crisis.   His solution is simple: to build more houses.   This diagnoses didn’t go unchallenged. Writing in the FT, Nathan Brooker says that Kay is wrong and that to `build yourself out of a housing crisis is like trying to dig yourself out of a hole’. In fact, Brooker seems to deny there’s a housing shortage, arguing that prime central London is full of empty houses and that the capital is oversupplied with homes that are too expensive.   This is Brooker’s point – that it’s not largely a problem of supply and demand, but of homes being too expensive. He blames this on high land values, a cumbersome planning system and the fact that house owners generally like high house price and worry when they fall. Easy credit and low interest rates have also played a part in increasing demand and pushing up prices to the extent that UK homes, at least in London, have become attractive assets for foreign investors.   It’s true – for people with money, homes have been one of the most attractive forms of investment, even if they never intended living in them themselves. Investors in buy-to-let have reaped massive returns, gaining on average 1,400% since 1996 — four times more than equivalent investments in commercial property, government bonds or shares. The enthusiasm for investing in housing has been fuelled by correspondingly poor returns from other forms of investment. The stock market by February 2015 had only just recovered to its peak of the end of 1999 before the dot.com bubble burst, so that the total real return of the FTSE 100 over that period was close to zero.   So, for a variety of reasons, not necessarily connected to demand, house prices are high and there is little point in building more if people cannot afford to buy them. Subsiding building doesn’t necessarily help either as Spain, Ireland and Portugal all tried that, but it achieved little for them other than large stocks of unwanted houses. It’s not true, by the way, that our European neighbours rely more on subsidised social housing than the UK, where it accounts for about 18% of all homes. Only three European economies rely more on social housing than we do: the Netherlands, where it accounts for 32% of all homes, Austria at 23% and Denmark at 19%.   There is a further point that a number of observers have made, namely that there can’t be a shortage of houses in the UK when so many are sitting empty. Less than a year ago it was reported that the number of empty homes in the UK was at its highest for 20 years. Government figures showed that there were more than one million additional homes above those required for households in the UK, prompting at least one economist to say that this suggested building more homes would do little to bring prices down. In truth, these figures on empty homes are, in themselves, misleading. On their own, they don’t give a full picture because they include second homes, or properties which are empty because they are awaiting for tenants or home owners to move in.   But, looking at the big picture, all of this suggests that the UK housing market is more complicated than might appear at first sight. One thing that is clear is that the problem is different in different parts of the country – London being one obvious and extreme example. It doesn’t really address the issue to take the UK, or even England as a whole, and attempt to balance the overall national supply with the overall national demand. Even Kay points out that we should not just build houses, but that it matters where we build them.   The mid 1990s should serve as a warning. Then – as ever – prices in London and the South East were climbing steeply, but houses in many parts of the UK were relatively affordable. In less prosperous areas there were even signs of housing markets collapsing and, in some places the falls were dramatic. Research in the North West suggested that the cause there was oversupply of new housing on peripheral sites, with more housing having been built or given planning permission than the household projections suggested was needed. This decline was only halted with the introduction of policies to reduce the level of building.  

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PPSPower provides N+1+1+1 UPS solution at The Sharp Project for Manchester City Council

For many years both the National Grid and the government have reported concerns over the resilience of the UK’s electrical system. The risks associated with power outages can be critical for businesses, with downtime leading to lost data, missed deadlines and huge financial implications. These concerns, combined with the growing demand to store data, make it understandable why more companies are investing in their backup systems, and looking to increase reliability and resilience. The Sharp Project, a unique office space recently acquired by Manchester City Council, previously utilised an N+1+1+1 resilience over four 120kv UPS systems. The council required a cost-effective solution that offers N+1+1 on its A&B supplies. Following a visit to the Sharp Project, PPSPower established that an N+1+1 is achievable with only three of the 120kVA UPS’s. The client requested a further two units, enabling the team to provide three UPS systems covering the A supply, and three covering the B supply. The works required PPSPower’s engineers to decommission and disconnect one of the council’s units and relocate it to another room in the building alongside two new 120kVA units. Each UPS system has its own string of batteries. The units were installed, and load bank tested at 100%, with each unit switched off one by one, to ensure that the N+1+1+1 configuration works as it should, before putting the client’s equipment online. There are notable benefits to having the building’s mains power supply coming through the UPS set up. For example, during a loss of supply, the UPS system can notify the relevant person that there has been a power loss, and the equipment being supported will not be affected until the UPS’s batteries run flat. Also, A UPS system converts the incoming AC to DC so that it can charge the batteries. It then converts it back to AC, to support the equipment it is connected to. This therefore, ensures a stable, and consistent supply, and helps to reduce any potential equipment damage due to unexpected surges. Stephen Peal, Director of PPSPower, said: “At PPSPower we offer a wide range of UPS systems to protect our clients’ mission critical systems. All of our solutions are customer-focused and cost-effective, and can be tailored to individual business’ needs. There are a number of initiatives ongoing to help balance supply, and demand, including Demand Side Response, which we can help businesses participate in. “This UPS solution will provide Manchester City Council with absolute reliability, and retain N+1 in the event of a unit failure, and during service visits. Our engineers worked extremely hard to ensure there was no effect on the building’s essential operation, and planned works carefully to meet the timescales of the project, minimising disruption. Feedback from the client has been excellent, they are delighted with the solution provided.” Mike Farrington, Technical Operations Manager at Manchester City Council, said: “We have been very impressed with the PPSPower team’s professionalism and commitment to this project. They were careful to communicate all aspects of the work to us, which helped reduce the impact on our work. They have provided a solution that gives our team peace of mind in knowing that our power supply is protected.” PPSPower is a successful and well-established national provider of back-up power service and maintenance solutions. The company’s core services include: generator sales, installation maintenance and repair, load banking, UPS sales, installation, repair and maintenance, fire pump maintenance and repair, fuel polishing and Oftec Tank inspections. For more information visit https://www.ppspower.com/

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Sika Saved a Towering Landmark

Sika has supplied a concrete repair system to refurbish the façade of Chatterton Water Tower in Spalding, a long-standing feature of the area’s landscape. The 30 metres high construction overlooks the local bus station and its distinctive tulip fascia makes it stand out. The construction has existed for 63 years; therefore the time and erosion had an impact on the tower’s surface, leading to minor repairs such as the removal of flaking and algae growth. The principle contractor Barhale, together with specialist contractors Concrete Repair Ltd, turned to Sika for a proved, durable concrete repair, protection, and anti-carbonation system. The refurbishment work started in March 2017 with the tower’s 4,000 m2 surface getting cleaned of dirt and other impurities. After breaking out defective concrete and cleaning the exposed reinforcement, Sika Monotop-610, a high-performance, one-component, cementitious, polymer-modified slurry was then applied. Its advantage is that it only needs mixing with water to provide a superb reinforcement corrosion protection coating and bonding primer. The concrete repairs were then done with Sika Monotop-615, which is the perfect reinforcement mortar for delaminated, weak, damaged, and deteriorated concrete. The following step was applying Sikagard-675 W GB ElastoColor, which prevents water ingress and is suitable for a range of concrete structures as an anti-weathering, two-way vapour permeable solution to stop pollutants and water penetrating into the concrete matrix, while protecting the internal reinforcement. “The Sika products were superb in repairing and protecting the tower’s surface. They were very easy to use, and provided the perfect base with which to restore the tower’s aesthetic qualities. We were very pleased,” said Olu Ogunwale, Senior Contracts Manager at Concrete Repair Ltd. Thanks to the Sika solution, the tower now looks just like it did in 1955 when it was built and the dual concrete protection system will ensure that the Chatterton Water Tower will remain Spalding’s pride for many years to come.

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