BDC

Search
BDC Magazine

March 2, 2021

Glencar recognised by the FT as one of Europe’s fastest growing companies.

High profile FT1000 league table ranks Glencar within the top ten of all leading 1,000 European companies with the strongest revenue growth. Glencar, an expanding construction company specialising in the industrial, logistics, distribution, manufacturing, life science and pharmaceutical sectors has today revealed that it has been recognised by the FT

Read More »

Works start on key SEND schools in Lincolnshire as investment continues

Four Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) schools in Lincolnshire are set to be expanded as part of Lincolnshire County Council’s £86 million investment programme – to improve and develop special schools across the county – landscape architect Influence has announced. Working alongside contractor Willmott Dixon, Newark-based Influence is providing

Read More »

Lee Marley Brickwork Ltd Opens Scottish Scaffolding Division

Lee Marley Brickwork Ltd (LMB) has appointed Billy Dolan as Operations Manager of their new Scottish scaffolding division in Glasgow, the next step in the company’s national expansion plan.  Billy brings over 30 years of experience in the construction industry in a management position, he has worked for a spectrum of multi-national, national and local

Read More »
Mixergy Launches Heat-Pump Ready Water Tank

Mixergy Launches Heat-Pump Ready Water Tank

Mixergy, the smart hot water tank company, has upgraded its entire range of hot water cylinders to allow them to operate with a heat pump at any point during their working life. Once fitted, the multi-use cylinders, which can be used with a gas boiler, mains electricity or solar PV,

Read More »
New Technology Launch for Smart Building Projects

New Technology Launch for Smart Building Projects

The controllers and push-buttons of the KNX eTR series are switch-sized and flexible in their installation. The clear design language creates quick and easy access to KNX building technology. The real glass surface is elegant, hygienic and durable at the same time. The controllers and push-buttons may be installed on

Read More »
LSBU Estates Team Wins CIBSE Award

LSBU Estates Team Wins CIBSE Award

London South Bank University’s (LSBU) Estates and Academic Environment Management team has won (25 February) a prestigious CIBSE Building Performance award for efficient facilities management. The team won their award for improving overall energy efficiency and sustainability across the University’s estate. They employed energy efficient technologies to reduce overall electric,

Read More »

Latest Issue

BDC 319 : Aug 2024

March 2, 2021

Glencar recognised by the FT as one of Europe’s fastest growing companies.

High profile FT1000 league table ranks Glencar within the top ten of all leading 1,000 European companies with the strongest revenue growth. Glencar, an expanding construction company specialising in the industrial, logistics, distribution, manufacturing, life science and pharmaceutical sectors has today revealed that it has been recognised by the FT as one of Europe’s fastest growing companies in the FT1000. The FT1000 league table is published annually by the Financial Times and Statista, charting the 1,000 companies in Europe that have achieved the highest percentage growth in revenues over the past 12 months. Glencar is placed in an incredible fourth place and scores highly as an innovative and fast-growing company, part of the driving force of the European economy in the 21st century, generating jobs and sustaining industry. Commenting on the achievement, Glencar Managing Director Eddie McGillycuddy said: “We are incredibly proud to feature so highly in the FT1000 league table now in its fifth year, especially following our recognition in top spot in the annual Sunday Times Virgin Atlantic Fast Track 100 league table in December last year. Since founding Glencar in 2016 we have seen a dramatic increase in the growth of the logistics/industrial construction sector and we believe our strong growth path reflects the growing demand for our expertise together with our customer-centric delivery model which has really given us a competitive advantage. None of this growth would have been possible without our people and this fantastic accolade really is testament to the hard-work and dedication of the team which has allowed us to keep building on this success.  We are already experiencing a very busy start to 2021 with further announcements expected shortly and look forward to further growth this year. To view the FT1000 2021 list and for more information about the ranking click here

Read More »

Timber industry resilient but Brexit brings trade friction, survey finds

Difficulties with logistics, trade with Northern Ireland, and the time and cost to fill out customs and due diligence paperwork are adding pressure to an already tight timber supply chain, a survey by the TTF has found.   Logistics is the most pressing challenge facing respondents, with a lack of haulage vehicles, inflated costs, and hauliers’ hesitancy to import and export goods in and out of the UK slowing down trade. The next most prominent issue for traders is the Northern Ireland Protocol, which 45% of respondents from Great Britain (GB) who are trading with Northern Ireland (NI) believe is detrimentally impacting their ability to supply the NI market. One respondent stated that it would be “more cost-effective for our business to cease trading with Northern Irish customers,” said one respondent. As timber from GB is subject to customs declarations, due diligence under UK Timber Regulation (UKTR), phytosanitary certificates and potentially duty under the Northern Ireland Protocol, GB suppliers are at a disadvantage compared to their European counterparts, as NI is for practical purposes still in the EU, and timber from the EU is not subject the same or similar requirements. However, NI exporters to GB do appear to have largely ‘unfettered access’, with 55% of respondents reporting that they were not experiencing trade restrictions while moving goods from NI to GB.  Additional administrative procedures, as well as some European companies unwilling or unable to share details of supply chains to help members complete the necessary due diligence under UKTR, is also affecting respondents’ businesses. “More paperwork required, resulting in additional costs and resources required to understand the new requirements,” said one respondent. There was also concern from the survey participants that they will face further challenges and uncertainties once the grace period for customs declarations comes to an end in July, and when UKCA marking is enforced next year. Encouragingly, the survey did find respondents well prepared for their new role as Operators under UK TR and the due diligence requirements this entails, as well as for the new rules for importing, as none of those surveyed mentioned any issues from a compliance perspective. David Hopkins, Chief Executive Officer of the Timber Trade Federation, said: “On the whole, this survey shows that our members are coping well with the changes brought about by Brexit. But, the new trade restrictions have come at a time when the market is experiencing unparalleled challenges as a result of the COVID pandemic. In December we released a market statement warning of tight timber and panel supplies into 2021. Now, the situation is exacerbated by increased administration and slower delivery times as a result of the Brexit trade deal.” “Looking ahead we see a variety of challenges besides logistics. Most concerningly is UKCA marking. This mark could raise considerable trade barriers for our members. The Government has yet to draw up the full framework for suppliers from outside the UK, so we foresee businesses struggling to prepare for the implementation of the new mark next year. “We are working with the Construction Products Association (CPA) to look for practical solutions to this situation. “However, it is positive to hear our members are optimistic for the year ahead as demand remains at an all-time high. People want to renovate their homes, and construction remains open for business during lockdowns. We are also extremely pleased that after almost half a decade of preparing members for Brexit, it is paying off as they feel confident they have the capability and knowledge to conduct trade successfully once the systems are up to speed. “There is still a lot of work left to do, but as ever the Timber Trade Federation will work with our members to prepare for the changes to come.” About the report The Timber Trade Federation Post-Brexit survey gathered thirty-six member companies’ responses, representing timber importers, merchants, agents, and manufacturers.  The survey was conducted between 11 January to 12 February. You can find the report HERE.

Read More »

SCAPE BECOMES FIRST FRAMEWORK PROVIDER TO JOIN GOOD HOMES ALLIANCE IN MOVE TO DRIVE POSITIVE CHANGE IN HOUSING SECTOR

SCAPE, the UK’s leading public sector procurement authority, has become a member of the Good Homes Alliance (GHA), making it the UK’s first framework provider to join the Alliance. The GHA aims to promote the building of quality sustainable homes that enhance the communities they are part of through a range of social, economic and environmental benefits.  As a member of the Alliance, SCAPE will collaborate with more than 80 organisations – ranging from industry contractors and suppliers to local authorities and universities – to support the aim of net-zero emissions homes along with higher standards in comfort and health for occupants. The GHA has an ever-growing Vanguard Network of forward-thinking local authorities and has recently launched a new Pathfinder Network for housing associations. Members of the GHA – such as Pollard Thomas Edwards, Hoare Lea and Bioregional – are driving innovation and improving standards across the housing sector, including actively supporting progress towards the government’s 2050 Net Zero carbon target. To aid that, the GHA is supporting the Building for 2050 research project, funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, which aims to inform UK policy on delivering low carbon homes in England and Wales. SCAPE champions the development of sustainable low carbon homes through its procurement frameworks for public sector projects and has recently published its own comprehensive environmental policy – alongside recommended environmental standards for projects – approved by the UK Green Building Council. The policy sets out a range of objectives that will match the environmental objectives of our most ambitious clients. Featuring in its recently published Social Value: More Than Metricsresearch report, SCAPE has also outlined a series of recommendations to encourage sustainable development across the UK. Mark Robinson, group chief executive of SCAPE, said: “If the past year has taught us anything, it’s that collaboration is essential to driving meaningful and impactful change. As a collective of the private and public sector’s most forward-thinking organisations, the GHA is spearheading the effort to create exemplary homes that set a benchmark for sustainability – not just in the UK, but across the world. The Alliance’s work is vital to developing the homes that we need to live in a greener world. “We currently work very closely with our delivery partners to improve project standards and ensure that benchmarks are not only met but surpassed, so we know that outstanding things happen when we pool knowledge, resources and commitment to the same cause. By joining the GHA, I’m confident that we can achieve more together as we actively contribute to its work for championing change and best practice and generating the sustainable outcomes that local communities deserve.” The GHA is led by a board that includes council representatives, sustainable design experts and architects. The Alliance operates within four key themes to embed sustainability into the mainstream: exploring alternative housing models that address the housing crisis; introducing measures that improve people’s health & wellbeing in homes; identifying techniques to support carbon neutral and carbon positive homes; and encouraging the adoption of robust standards that yield high-performance housing. Julian Brooks, Programmes Director at Good Homes Alliance, said: “We’re delighted that SCAPE has joined our Alliance. Developing the supply chain to enable the delivery of net zero new homes is a critical part of the journey and experience from client groups is suggesting that a greater focus is needed around verifiable and real net zero outcomes. Working with organisations such as SCAPE opens up this much needed discussion directly across the supply chain and we are optimistic that we can accelerate the delivery of net zero homes as a result.” 

Read More »

Works start on key SEND schools in Lincolnshire as investment continues

Four Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) schools in Lincolnshire are set to be expanded as part of Lincolnshire County Council’s £86 million investment programme – to improve and develop special schools across the county – landscape architect Influence has announced. Working alongside contractor Willmott Dixon, Newark-based Influence is providing landscape design services to Willoughby School in Bourne, Eresby School in Spilsby, St Bernard’s School in Louth and The Priory School in Spalding. The council’s investment strategy seeks to create an extra 500 SEND school spaces across the county, to meet the increasing demand and to combat families having to make long journeys to school. Of the improvement works at the four schools, Willoughby, Eresby and St Bernard’s achieved planning permission in 2020 to construct extension buildings to existing sites, enabling more school places for pupils, as well as additional space for improved facilities. Works are now progressing on the £6.5million expansion plan for Eresby School in Spilsby, which will deliver five new classrooms, a hall, IT and science spaces, small group rooms, meeting spaces and hygiene facilities. Works also include enlarging the school’s car park, installing a canopy link, introducing new vehicle access points and fencing and landscaping around the site.  The £4.25 million works to Willoughby School in Bourne will see 74 new car parking bays provided, along with capacity for 20 minibuses and a new drop off and pick-up point at the start and end of the school day. New fencing, lighting and CCTV security systems will also be installed, with safe, segregated vehicular and pedestrian access routes included as part of the site design. Works at St Bernard’s School, Louth, will see the demolition of two existing buildings and construction of a new two-storey building, remodelling of existing buildings and the creation of additional car parking and hard play areas. Construction on the schools is due to begin early this year, with completion expected by early 2022. Plans for The Priory School, Spalding are nearing completion and are expected to be submitted for planning shortly. Shona Hatton, associate director at Influence, said: “We are proud to be managing the landscape designs of the extension and improvement plans for Willoughby, Eresby, St Bernard’s and The Priory Schools, in partnership with Willmott Dixon and Lincolnshire County Council and alongside their architects Kier Specialist Services. “The building works are part of the council’s ambitious investment plans to improve and expand SEND schools in the area, offering more places and improved facilities to children who will benefit hugely from having safe, engaging and enjoyable spaces to learn and interact.  “We have worked on a number of schools in the East Midlands, including other SEND projects, and it is especially rewarding to see plans come to fruition that positively impact the services and quality of education available within our local communities.” Nick Heath, director of delivery at Willmott Dixon, said: “We’re incredibly proud to be working on these amazing schemes. With only 20 special education schools currently operating in Lincolnshire, we want to do everything we can to increase school places across the county to allow students of all ages easier access to the education they deserve. Despite currently being in a national lockdown, the team will continue to operate by adhering to stringent safety procedures and enhanced social distancing measures. This optimisation of risk management means that we will be able to deliver the project to the agreed timescales and improve educational facilities for students across Lincolnshire as soon as possible. At Willmott Dixon, we pride ourselves on leaving a legacy in the local communities we work among; therefore we are delighted to be working in collaboration Influence to help Lincolnshire County Council establish a school system that provides education that is accessible to all who need it.” Cllr Mrs Patricia Bradwell OBE, executive member for children’s services, said: “We want to ensure that all children can access high-quality education, as near to their family and local community as possible. To help achieve that, we’re investing £86m in improving our special schools over the next few years. “Our ambitious programme will mean more pupils with SEND can attend a local school rather than having to travel large distances for their education, which will be of great benefit to both the children and their families. “I’m delighted to see construction getting underway at Eresby School and Willoughby School, and I look forward to seeing the projects progress.”

Read More »

Think tank’s construction skills gap report highlights need for more MMC, says Actis

A new report warning that skills gaps in the construction industry threaten the UK’s 2050 net zero target highlights the importance of training and embracing new methods of construction, says insulation specialist Actis. It was responding to a report by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) which calls for leadership from the government and collective action from industry to upskill and retain the existing workforce and encourage recruitment. Skills for a Green Recovery – A call to action for the UK construction sector points to a skills drain, with 750,000 construction workers due to retire within the next 15 years and only 20% of workers under the age of 30. Actis UK and Ireland sales director Mark Cooper, whose company works with many timber frame manufacturers, says this latest report is yet another reminder that, while employment levels and green skills training need to be increased, so does adoption of more energy efficient, consistent and quicker methods of construction. “Houses produced offsite can be built up to 30% more quickly than traditional brick and block, delivering much needed homes at a faster rate and using fewer man hours per unit. And costs can be reduced by as much as 25%. “But their ability to offset a smaller than desirable workforce is not the prime driver to increase the use of this method of construction. Because they are factory produced, quality consistency is far easier to control. They can be thermally superb, cutting carbon emissions and saving money for the occupier. “Timber framers choose our Actis Hybrid system because it offers a thermally superb envelope with no thermal bridging. The products can also be installed quickly, cleanly and effectively with ease by someone who has had minimal training, possibly via our snappy on-line tutorials. Installing Actis insulation can take half the time of solid board alternatives, adding further time savings to the overall build process to help counter the skills gap.” The report’s message has been backed by industry heavyweights including government MMC champion Mark Farmer and bodies such as the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB), the Federation of Master Builders and the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) who are calling on Chancellor Rishi Sunak to support the sector to get the green skills it needs. Mark Farmer, author of the 2016 Farmer Review and 2020’s Build Back Better, added: “The IPPR has set out in this report a refreshed challenge to government and industry to make sure we make the most of our current and future workforce, equipping them with the right skills in conjunction with broader objectives to increase MMC and associated technology adoption. Without this approach, plans to Build Back Better and enable a green recovery could be scuppered from the start.”  (caption) Mark Cooper, UK and Ireland sales director for insulation specialist Actis, says increasing use of offsite is vital to help offset the skills gap identified in the latest IPPR report (caption infographic) Installing Actis insulation can take half the time of solid board alternatives, adding further time savings to the overall build process. This goes some way towards countering the skills gap identified in the IPPR report which has been backed by Mark Farmer, the CITB, FMB and CIOB

Read More »

Lee Marley Brickwork Ltd Opens Scottish Scaffolding Division

Lee Marley Brickwork Ltd (LMB) has appointed Billy Dolan as Operations Manager of their new Scottish scaffolding division in Glasgow, the next step in the company’s national expansion plan.  Billy brings over 30 years of experience in the construction industry in a management position, he has worked for a spectrum of multi-national, national and local businesses over his career. Billy comments: “I am delighted to join the Lee Marley team in Scotland and to work alongside Michael Carr. We are extremely excited that we can now offer our clients a full package service of scaffolding and brickwork, as well as being flexible to offer them as standalone services.” Michael Carr, Commercial Manager – Scotland comments: “Billy is a great addition to our team in Scotland.  In the five years that we have been operational in Scotland it has been an ambition of mine to offer a masonry and scaffold solution that mirrors our set-up south of the border.  Billy’s wealth of experience in this sector allows us to offer our customers the same high standard from a scaffold perspective that we have become known for through our masonry side of the Scottish business.” Billy is excited to be part of the company’s continued expansion plans and with the investment that LMB have put into the Scottish market, he has high hopes for the future. As of next month, LMB will be working on several projects in Scotland that cover new build housing and social housing. The team are delighted to announce they will be working on a scaffold and brick package for Morrisons on their Winchburgh schools project. In Scotland, Lee Marley Brickwork Ltd are working on many brickwork projects including:  Edinburgh: Longstone, Edinburgh St James – Edinburgh, Springside, Dundee Street, Longniddry and Ropeworks 7 Glasgow: New City Road, Clydebank Health Centre, Ropeworks 7 and Daragvel Primary  LMB Joint Managing Director Dan Clarkson comments: “Having worked closely with Bill over a number of years it is great to have him join our team in Glasgow. His technical and safety knowledge is second to none and his appointment allows us to replicate the combined brickwork and scaffolding offering that has proved so successful in London and the South East. It will also allow us to offer scaffold only services to a wider range of clients on new-build, refurb and maintenance projects across the Central Belt” Lee Marley Brickwork (LMB) is one of the UK’s leading integrated brickwork, scaffolding and stone sub-contractors. For more information, please visit: www.leemarley.com. 

Read More »
Mixergy Launches Heat-Pump Ready Water Tank

Mixergy Launches Heat-Pump Ready Water Tank

Mixergy, the smart hot water tank company, has upgraded its entire range of hot water cylinders to allow them to operate with a heat pump at any point during their working life. Once fitted, the multi-use cylinders, which can be used with a gas boiler, mains electricity or solar PV, now give consumers the option to install a heat pump without having to replace the tank. The Mixergy tank is made from high-grade stainless steel to ensure that it lasts at least 25 years. The design team was determined to avoid product obsolescence and prepare the householder for a low carbon future whether using direct electric heating, heat pumps or hydrogen boilers.  Mixergy’s smart hot water tanks use innovative technology to optimise energy use. Using thermal stratification to prevent hot water mixing with cold, Mixergy tanks heat only the water required instead of the whole tank at once when operating with direct electric, gas or PV. This approach, combined with the use of AI techniques that learn to heat water only when it is needed, can save consumers up to 20% on their hot water bills. When connecting a heat pump, installers simply fit the Mixergy Heat Transfer Module (HTM) , which uses an external plate heat exchanger assembly and circulation pump to achieve a more efficient heat transfer and improved volumetric performance. The HTM boosts the heat pump’s coefficient of performance (COP) by up to 10% for water heating whilst the tank is able to store up to 20% more hot water within the same installation volume compared to a coil heated tank. “The government has set a target for 600,000 heat pump installations per year by 2028, which the industry agrees is a challenging goal,” said Dr Pete Armstrong, chief executive officer and co-founder, Mixergy. “By developing a heat-pump ready cylinder, we are offering householders a way to upgrade their water tank now, connect it to their existing boiler and be ready if they choose to install a heat pump in the future. The same tank will continue to work if the gas boiler is upgraded to work with hydrogen or if the customer decides to go all-electric with PV and a smart tariff. Fundamentally, we believe that there are multiple paths to net zero and we are determined that our tanks should be equipped for all without needing to be replaced. This saves money and hassle whilst eliminating the environmental impact of product obsolescence.” The Mixergy cylinder is also available as a slim-line version, which is the smallest heat-pump cylinder on the market, and comes with a 25 year warranty. As well as its multi-use features, Mixergy tanks offer smart scheduling controls through an app and are internet-connected to enable them to work with smart time-of-use energy tariffs, so that consumers have the option to heat their water when electricity prices are low or even negative. Mixergy’s solution was the first domestic hot water product to be certified by National Grid to provide grid flexibility services. Mixergy is working with Centrica to deploy thousands of smart hot water tanks as part of Centrica’s 2.5GW virtual power plant. Mixergy tanks already deliver more than a megawatt of Demand Side Response (DSR) service to the National Grid, time shifting demand to help balance the grid and facilitate the uptake of renewable energy generation.

Read More »
New Technology Launch for Smart Building Projects

New Technology Launch for Smart Building Projects

The controllers and push-buttons of the KNX eTR series are switch-sized and flexible in their installation. The clear design language creates quick and easy access to KNX building technology. The real glass surface is elegant, hygienic and durable at the same time. The controllers and push-buttons may be installed on the wall with or without a switch box. All devices of the eTR series are supplied via the KNX bus voltage, so only the KNX TP line is necessary for connection. At 82 mm × 82 mm and 12 mm installation depth, the size corresponds approximately to a normal switch. A temperature sensor is integrated in all devices of the eTR series, so that no further sensors need to be installed for room temperature control. The KNX eTR M touch buttons are flexibly programmable. For example, as a light switch, for dimming, to raise and lower shades or to call up scenes. The LEDs in the touch surfaces can be set individually, as feedback to a touch operation or as ambient lighting. KNX eTR M is available as a single, double or quadruple push-button. The area function is an extra for the multiple push-buttons: When several fields are touched, for example by wiping over them or briefly placing the hand on them, another function is called up. The area function is often linked to the main function for a room, e.g. to switch on the light when passing by. Printed icons immediately show that the KNX eTR MultiTouch push button is used to set light, temperature and shading. Three times three areas are available in total. For light, the following could be set: Dim darker on the left, dim brighter on the right and switch on the lamp icon in the middle. The scene control included in the KNX device application offers further possibilities. The call-up of the scene can be assigned to one of the areas, e.g. “Dimming and ambient lighting” when tapping on the blind symbol. In the temperature area, thanks to the LEDs, it is immediately visible whether one has set cooler or warmer than the standard setpoint temperature. Also heating is visualised by a red LED and cooling by a blue LED. If the thermometer flashes, frost or heat protection is active. The control software for the heating and cooling system is included in the KNX device application. The PI controller can control single- and two-stage heating and cooling systems and switch between heating and cooling in combined systems. The reference is always the comparison between the measured actual temperature and the desired setpoint temperature. The individual feel-good temperature is the focus of the heating/cooling controllers KNX eTR 101 and KNX eTR 201/202 Sunblind. The setpoint temperature is displayed in luminous digits and can be changed using the intuitively understandable “Plus” and “Minus” buttons. Here, too, the controller for heating and cooling is included in the KNX application. Models 201 and 202 have additional up/down touch surfaces for positioning sunshades or blackouts. sun protection or darkening. LEDs in the touch surfaces provide visual feedback, e.g. as long as a drive is moving. So while the user interface of the KNX eTR series convinces the user with simplicity, many individual settings are possible in the application. Another helpful functionality is the mixed value calculation of the temperature sensor, which takes the value of another sensor if required and processes it into a room average. Logic modules enable simple AND and OR links. For example, the feedback of the LEDs in the touch surfaces can be prevented at night. And open window contacts can switch the temperature control to frost/heat protection mode. The great flexibility at a manageable price level qualifies the series not only for private residential buildings, but also in particular for offices, buildings used by the public and hotels with a KNX building bus system.

Read More »
LSBU Estates Team Wins CIBSE Award

LSBU Estates Team Wins CIBSE Award

London South Bank University’s (LSBU) Estates and Academic Environment Management team has won (25 February) a prestigious CIBSE Building Performance award for efficient facilities management. The team won their award for improving overall energy efficiency and sustainability across the University’s estate. They employed energy efficient technologies to reduce overall electric, gas and water consumption. “LSBU’s Estates team is very proud to have won this CIBSE award for efficient facilities management across the University’s campus. It’s recognition of the commitment we’ve given to upgrading our campus facilities and improving the performance of buildings, while reducing our impact on the environment. LSBU’s commitment to renewable energy sources has resulted in a carbon emissions reduction of 85% since 2010,” said Chris Barnes, Maintenance & Energy Manager for Estates & Academic Environment at LSBU. The CIBSE Building Performance Awards 2021, now in their 14th year, recognise the people, products and projects that demonstrate engineering excellence in the built environment. Fifty-five international projects were shortlisted for 14 awards, demonstrating global achievements in exceptional building performance within engineering.

Read More »