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September 24, 2019

What You Should Keep In Mind Before Purchasing Equipment

Starting a construction project can be a daunting task. There are so many things that you need to consider to complete your numerous building tasks. On that note, often big jobs require the use of a wide array of equipment. These pieces include road sweepers, dumpers, telehandlers, rollers, shovels, and

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Balfour Beatty Wins Public Service Award

Balfour Beatty Living Places has secured a prize at this year’s Public Service Excellence awards. The firm along with partner Southampton City Council won the Best Public / Private Partnership Working Initiative award at the annual event. These awards recognise the very best in local government frontline services across the

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Government Announces Renewable Energy Projects

The UK government has announced the next round of renewable energy projects under the flagship Contracts for Difference scheme. The Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme is the government’s primary method of supporting low-carbon electricity. It encourages investment in renewables by providing projects with a stable income while protecting consumers from

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Changing Attitudes to Senior Housing

It appears that there is a bewildering gap between the supply and demand of retirement housing. Research by property consultants Bidwells shows there is a current demand for 30,000 new rental retirement homes but only 2,000 have been built. The number for sale is marginally better with a requirement for

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BDC 318 : Jul 2024

September 24, 2019

What You Should Keep In Mind Before Purchasing Equipment

Starting a construction project can be a daunting task. There are so many things that you need to consider to complete your numerous building tasks. On that note, often big jobs require the use of a wide array of equipment. These pieces include road sweepers, dumpers, telehandlers, rollers, shovels, and attachments. FGS Plant is a UK based construction company that has a wide range of utilities available for quick order. With our competitive hire rates, flexible hire periods, free site survey, and telephone support, we are the premier destination for purchasing or considering equipment for your constructional needs. Despite the wide variety of construction companies in the UK, FGS plant is specific in the fact that we are dedicated to providing you with quality service to fulfill your personal and professional goals. We have a broad range of plant available to hire. Whatever your requirements, FGS Plant guarantees to meet your needs and surpass your requirements.  Things to Consider When Looking For the Plant Hire Services:  Most companies have come to understand that there are many benefits associated with selecting to work with a plant hire service. Employing a plant hire service can help them save money because they can rent as opposed to buying expensive constructional equipment. Despite the apparent economic benefit of hiring a plant hire service, one must consider additional factors when looking to purchase equipment. With that said, purchasing any piece of equipment comes with obligations that we all need to be made aware of.  The first thing to do before hiring a plant hire service, is to do your research. Before purchasing equipment or engaging in a professional plant hire service you must understand what your end goals are. By doing this, you can prevent yourself from pairing with a company that does not have the skills or resources to meet your constructional needs.  Also, credibility is another factor to consider. You must ask yourself, “How do the majority of people rate this plant hire service?” If you discover that a majority of people have had a negative interaction with the company, you can save yourself a lot of time and stress. If you’re looking to engage with a plant hire Kent company then consider FGS Plant.  On that note, the age of equipment and delivery time are also things to consider. Old building equipment can be a hazard to you and those around you. The state of the material you are receiving can also be the difference between establishing a safe environment or a hazardous one. Having the latter will lead to countless lawsuits and inconvenience on your company and its employees. Furthermore, depending on when you want your project completed, a plant hire service’s delivery time is a significant element. It is best to avoid companies that will not respect your time in regards to completing projects. Understanding the relationship a company has with time-sensitive projects is something to consider strongly before hiring a plant hire service.  Requirements Every Plant Hire Services Should Meet: Not many people know this, but there are some aspects that all plant hire services should meet. One of these requirements states that all equipment must have a risk assessment or method statement carried out before being used. This risk assessment component is to ensure the safety of everyone involved with the construction process. All building equipment must have a qualified person in charge of the operation to ensure that the project is running smoothly without situations that could harm people. Finally, all equipment must have sufficient insurance cover for all personnel involved, members of the public, machinery and for each item being used.  Conclusion: Since 2004, FGS Plant has become a leader in the South East but supplying a wide range of equipment to major contractors throughout the area. We are not like other suppliers; our goal is to exceed your expectations so that you can produce the best results. More ever, besides providing top-notch service, our equipment and staff meet the highest standards demanded by the Construction industry. When working with FGS Plant, you are guaranteed to receive professional service that promptly meets all of your building requirements.

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Balfour Beatty Wins Public Service Award

Balfour Beatty Living Places has secured a prize at this year’s Public Service Excellence awards. The firm along with partner Southampton City Council won the Best Public / Private Partnership Working Initiative award at the annual event. These awards recognise the very best in local government frontline services across the UK and provide an opportunity for best practice to be shared with other local authorities and organisations. “We are delighted to have received the Best Public / Private Partnership Working Initiative award for our considerable efforts to deliver a digitally focused Highways service for Southampton City Council. The award is testament to our commitment to driving innovation and embedding new practices across our business and also to our people who work tirelessly to provide an exemplary service for our customers,” said Brian Hammersley, Contract Director, Balfour Beatty Living Places. Balfour Beatty Living Places was awarded a five-year Highways Services Partnership contract extension by Southampton City Council in 2017 following a history of good performance and collaborative working with the local authority. The extension further builds on the 10-year contract which commenced in October 2010, extending it until the end of September 2025. The firm’s digitally focused approach led the team to success; identifying, trialling and implementing systems and technological innovations such as 3D laser scanning and BIM to support and enhance the delivery of its Highways service. The ‘Digital by Design’ initiative has been implemented across its Southampton City Council Highways Services Partnership contract, resulting in improved customer satisfaction, enhanced quality and accessibility of information while also delivering significant cost efficiencies. “It was fantastic to accept the award for Best Public/Private Partnership Working Initiative on behalf of our highways team. This is well earned recognition of the hard work that staff at both Southampton City Council and Balfour Beatty put in every day to deliver for our residents,” added Cllr Jacqui Rayment, Cabinet Member for Transport & Place at Southampton City Council.

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It’s a Shocker: Leading Industry Figure Warns of the Perils of ‘Cowboy’ Electricians

Stricter regulations within the electrical industry would have a significant uplift on the economy while also driving massive improvements in public safety, a leading industry figure has said. Speaking yesterday morning (Thurs Sept 19) on BBC Radio Scotland, Fiona Harper, The Secretary of the Scottish Joint Industry Board (SJIB), welcomed moves by the Scottish Government to publish a consultation on the regulation of electricians. She told the BBC’s Andrew Black why change must come sooner rather than later. “In Scotland at this moment in time anyone can call themselves an electrician and carry out electrical work,” Fiona said. “Even if you decided tomorrow, Andrew, that radio is no longer for you, you could buy a van, call yourself an electrician, and it wouldn’t be against the law. “But electrical installation is what is described as a safety-critical activity. It’s always important that installations are safe, because if not, they can result in injury or death.” News of the consultation contained in the 2019-20 Programme for Government released earlier this month was immediately endorsed by SJIB and SELECT, the electrotechnical trade association. Both are among bodies campaigning to raise public awareness about the need to use registered electricians. “Some faults lie hidden for years, lurking behind a socket, under a floorboard or hidden in a wall, just waiting for a combination of circumstances for a flashpoint to occur,” said Fiona, who is also Head of Employment Affairs at SELECT. SELECT has estimated that as many as 16% of all domestic electricians operating in this country are either unqualified or under-qualified. They and others want the title of electrician protected in law, helping to ensure that anyone claiming to be an electrician would have the necessary qualifications, knowledge and experience to carry out work. “We would estimate that upskilling training would cost around £1,000 per person, so if that meant 10,000 unqualified or under-qualified people, that’s about £2million,” Fiona said. “But the benefit to the Scottish economy would be huge. We have made a cautious estimate of the net benefits to Scotland from proper, recognised, regulated electricians of around £58million. “By upskilling the workforce and regulating the playing field we would inevitably reduce damage caused by faulty work, there would be fewer injuries and deaths and better-functioning installations – but most importantly, happier and safer consumers.”

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Government Announces Renewable Energy Projects

The UK government has announced the next round of renewable energy projects under the flagship Contracts for Difference scheme. The Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme is the government’s primary method of supporting low-carbon electricity. It encourages investment in renewables by providing projects with a stable income while protecting consumers from paying increased support costs when electricity prices are high. “The UK is leading the way in the fight against climate change, and it’s great news that millions more homes will be powered by clean energy at record low prices. Seizing the opportunities of clean energy not only helps to protect our planet, but will also back businesses and boost jobs across the UK,” said Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Twelve new renewable energy projects have been unveiled, which are set to provide power for over seven million homes at record low prices. They will provide around 6GW of capacity – 2.4GW more than the last round. The costs of offshore wind are now around 30% lower than the second auction held in 2017, with projects now being delivered for as low as £39.65/MWh. These improvements are part of the government’s work to reach net zero emissions by 2050. “Offshore wind is a British success story, with new projects at record low prices creating new opportunities for jobs and economic growth as we leave the EU. The support we’re announcing today will mean that over 7 million more homes will be powered by renewable energy as we decarbonise our energy system – crucial as we continue on the road to net zero emissions by 2050,” added Energy and Clean Growth Minister Kwasi Kwarteng.

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Changing Attitudes to Senior Housing

It appears that there is a bewildering gap between the supply and demand of retirement housing. Research by property consultants Bidwells shows there is a current demand for 30,000 new rental retirement homes but only 2,000 have been built. The number for sale is marginally better with a requirement for 30,000 and have built 8,000.   As attitudes towards senior and retirement living are changing, Mike Derbyshire, Head of Planning at Bidwells goes into some of the reasons why it is time to bring policy agenda for senior living housing, out of retirement: Changing attitudes to senior housing Landowners and land promoters are now taking a keen interest in this market and having to recognise the Oliver Letwin report whilst also acknowledging the desire of Lasting power of attorney (LPAs) to speed up delivery. Previously, local authorities have been single issue entities. Most of the discussions within any authority in the South East are about the quantum of affordable housing and how much social rent can be provided. Everything else is simply lip service. The need for more senior living is undeniable but is mainly ignored along with the myriad of benefits that would follow. Retirement living leads to revitalising town centres One reason to provide more retirement living is that it can lead to the revitalisation of town centres and provide new and wonderful opportunities for policy makers that actively encourage senior living in town centres. These include accessibility to services, public transport and leisure – all of which are the key motivators for downsizers. Following the event, the government issued what was headlined as a significant update to the NPPF housing for older and disabled people. However, the update, which was nothing more than a generic list not fit to solve a growing healthcare crisis, left LPAs with the decision of whether to provide provision or not. One of the key issues relates to suitable housing and care. This is one of the greatest challenges the UK will face over the coming years and has been the subject of multiple studies and a recent Select Committee report. At present only a fraction of older households live in senior housing despite research finding far more people are interested in such options than actually live in them. This is an issue for the individuals involved, their families and capacity in the wider housing market. There are no short term fixes and the unfolding position will require we engage with alternative housing and lifestyles personally, but more importantly will demand change in fiscal structures and institutional initiative to drive new financing models for the future. According to the research, there are currently 12 million people over 65 in the UK with accelerating growth in these numbers over the coming years as healthcare advances progress. Official population forecasts suggest that there could be another 8.6 million by 2066, with more people living well into their 90s or beyond.  Nearly 75% of the over 65s in the UK are homeowners and therefore any intervention to support the senior housing sector needs to tackle the issues facing this growing cohort of the population.   The need for radical solutions for an emerging senior housing crisis is critical. The forecasts estimated the number of senior household (65+) over the coming 25 years will be equivalent to the household base of Inner London. Over the same period there will be an estimated five-fold increase in owner occupied specialised housing senior housing demand. This clearly presents opportunities for the senior developer and care sector but will depend on a fit for purpose fiscal and investment backdrop.

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