Dustcontrol UK scoops sustainability award at Speedy Expo 2019

DUSTCONTROL UK’s commitment to practice environmental and social sustainability has seen the company win the Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) award at the Speedy Expo 2019.

The company, which has over 45 years of experience in developing dust extraction solutions and centralised vacuum systems to fit client requirements in a wide range of industries, was recognised for its core focus on creating a healthier working environment for businesses.

Dustcontrol’s environmental policy complies with current environmental legislation, rules, requirements, and standards and works to ensure continuous improvement across sustainability, financial stability, efficient and effective solutions, physical wellbeing and a safe working environment.

The company also strives for continued investment in adapting the business in relation to the environment and health internally, while pushing for a reduced environmental footprint in the production of its services and products externally.  

Inspired by the United Nation’s 17 goals for sustainable global development and as a leader in producing technology for healthy business, Dustcontrol’s products have been designed with repairability, recyclability and energy efficiency in mind, with many of its high-quality models featuring energy-saving motors with auto-start functionality to reduce energy consumption. Furthermore, when choosing materials and components, the company looks at local suppliers in order to reduce shipping costs and, more importantly, its environmental footprint.

James Miller, managing director of Dustcontrol UK, said: "We’re delighted to be recognised for our global sustainable efforts by Speedy Services. We supply total solutions not only in manufacturing but within the engineering, food processing, construction and demolition industries. Our dust extractors and source extraction systems make the working environment cleaner and safer. Ultimately, health is improved and production is more efficient, which we call ‘healthy business’.  

“The wealth of knowledge gained in these industries also means we are adept at knowing the very latest requirements, regulations and working conditions for different types of workplaces nationwide.

“We’re not satisfied with just selling products. We aspire to manufacture and customise high-quality portable dust extractors and industrial extraction systems with very high levels of filtration, in the most environmentally friendly and sustainable way possible.”

www.dustcontroluk.co.uk

'To go green, you must overhaul policies,' warns RICS

THE Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has launched its General Election 2019 manifesto, calling on the future Government to move past Brexit, and to overhaul current domestic policies to build a more sustainable country that future generations can be proud of, and to fulfil aspirations to be carbon-neutral.

A new approach for the built and natural environment, calls for any new Government to put the climate, sustainable construction, placemaking and future-proofed housing policy at the forefront of the agenda. It also includes a clear call to action for the next leading party to take stock of the UK’s top domestic issues and then refocus how the built and natural environment can play a crucial role in future-proofing the UK’s towns, cities and economy.

The manifesto offers over 35 recommendations focussing on three main topics impacting the built and natural environment and its professionals: climate change, housing supply and high street rejuvenation.

Some of the key asks from the manifesto include:

  • Level the stamp duty playing field - undertaking a full-scale review of stamp duty;
  • Make business rates fairer, and easier for small businesses - promoting and supporting a thorough review of the current business rates system to ensure that legislation matching the Non-Domestic Rating (Lists) Bill is reintroduced;
  • Level the playing field between our high streets and those businesses operating primarily on the internet. Government should evaluate the current state of play and assess whether an internet sales tax or similar could be employed to then fund high street renewal; and
  • VAT for repair should be cut - cut VAT for repair, maintenance and improvement works in existing buildings.

Hew Edgar, RICS Head of UK Government Relations and City Strategy, said: “Chartered Surveyors play a leading role in tackling our most pressing domestic issues in the UK; and in key areas of the housing crisis, adapting to our changing environment and mitigating against climate change, and working on our high streets and their rejuvenation. We are keen to see real change in the way government approaches these key issues.

“These sectors, and our professionals who operate within them, are vital to economic development, helping to support stable and sustainable investment and growth across the UK.

“We believe the next government, regardless of configuration, needs to provide a holistic approach to support the built and natural environments. Failure to address the issues highlighted within the manifesto in a planned, cohesive way will have a serious impact on the wider economy, which will exacerbate existing housing and infrastructure deficit, and hinder any aspirations to be one of the greenest countries in the world.”

Full commentary on the parties’ manifestoes and RICS’ full manifesto can be found at rics.org/GE2019

'More ambitious financial incentives needed to upgrade homes', say builders

A BETTER offer for homeowners is needed if we are to reduce emissions from buildings by 2025, according to the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) in response to the Liberal Democrats manifesto published today.

Ifan Glyn, FMB Senior Hub Director, said: “The Lib Dems' pledge to cut VAT on home insulation is a step in the right direction and is an area that we have been lobbying on for a number of years through the Cut the VAT campaign.

"However, I feel that it needs to go further and VAT should be cut on the labour element of home improvement work across the board. Doing so would simplify the VAT system and send a clear message that boosting jobs and consumer demand in this space is a priority. We know that homeowners are more likely to request energy efficiency upgrades as a bolt on to other building work being carried out on their homes. Cutting VAT across the board would therefore incentivise the de-carbonisation of our homes further."

Glyn concluded: “On a positive note, I strongly welcome the Lib Dems’ pledge to enforce big businesses and government agencies to adhere to the prompt payment code. Smaller building firms are being held back by the abuse of retentions and late payment practices that are rife. Getting tough on serial offenders will help small businesses get back to doing what they do best, which is delivering quality work and training the next generation of builders.”

www.fmb.org.uk

Stahlwille's premium design for confined spaces

MINI fine-tooth ratchets with a steel handle only nine centimetres long are the latest addition to the family of 80-tooth fine-tooth ratchets at Stahlwille.

Now reduced to take up minimum space, they allow access to fasteners where a thicker, longer handle would not have room to move. The ergonomically shaped, particularly slim handle lies securely in the hand and allows fatigue-free working.

The slim, space-saving design comes into its own where every millimetre counts. Use of this handy ratchet can be decisive when it is a question of whether panels and components have to be dismantled using clumsy, time-consuming methods or whether the fastener can be accessed directly and easily. Examples of typical applications can be found in servicing jobs on aircraft, cars and motorcycles, in many production processes and in repair work in the heating and sanitary sector.

As with the existing fine-tooth ratchets with two-component plastic handles, the ratchets with the steel handle provide a ratchet angle of 4.5 degrees. No less than eight teeth engage simultaneously. Despite the compact dimensions, this enables extremely smooth running and high power transmission without damaging the mechanical systems.

There are two versions of the Stahlwille mini fine-tooth ratchet with the steel handle. The 418QR has a QuickRelease safety lock that firmly locks insert and shell tools in place. They cannot inadvertently fall off inside inaccessible places. The technology still enables rapid tool changes. Thanks to its screwless design, it is also predestined for use in safety-critical and FOD sensitive areas. The 418B mini fine-tooth bit ratchet, which is otherwise identical, is intended for use with screwdriver bits.

Both mini fine-tooth ratchets are manufactured to the high precision standards for which Stahlwille is renowned. The drop-forged chrome vanadium shank is highly resilient and ensures a long service life. The fine internal mechanics are reliably protected from dust, dirt and moisture by a particularly resistant plastic cover.

  Mini fine-tooth ratchet 418QR Mini fine-tooth bit ratchet 418B
Length 90 mm 90 mm
Width of head 22.5 mm 22.5 mm
Shank diameter 12.5 mm 11.0 mm
Weight 74 g 70 g
Code 11111050 11133030

www.stahlwille.co.uk

Morris Site Machinery invests in young talent

LEADING manufacturer and distributor Morris Site Machinery has taken on two engineering apprentices as it looks to invest in and develop young talent.

The new apprentices will spend two days a week at its base in Four Ashes, Wolverhampton, gaining on-the-job experience. They will also study at college in Wolverhampton on a three-year course to work towards a Certificate of Advanced Apprenticeship in Engineering.

Managing director Allan Binstead said: “We are an established business that looks to the future. We want to give opportunities to young people to help set them on a career path and develop their potential. In Jacob and Sam we have promising candidates who are willing to learn and gain practical skills and experience; we wish them well.”

Jacob Davies, one of the apprentices said: “It’s a great opportunity for both of us. Morris Site Machinery have made us very welcome. We are learning so much already and enjoying the variety of work.”

The business is known for its SMC mobile lighting towers, which it sells worldwide, and for its range of other high-quality site equipment including generators, welders, pumps and pressure washers. It is also investing in its future production capacity with plans to move to a new purpose-built base on the i54 South Staffordshire high-tech business park.

Morris Site Machinery is part of Shrewsbury-based fifth-generation family business group Morris & Company which is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year.

www.morrismachinery.co.uk

Mercedes-Benz vans ‘hit the nail on the head’ for tools specialist

BRIGHTON Tools & Fixings knows all about premium-quality equipment – which explains why it is now running four new Mercedes-Benz vehicles supplied by local dealer Rossetts Commercials.

Three stylish Citan vans are allocated to Sales Representatives, who visit construction sites and other locations across much of East and West Sussex, and parts of Kent, to promote the company’s comprehensive range of power tools and manual tools, fixings and other site consumables.

The Citan is the smallest van ever to wear a three-pointed star, and offers exemplary comfort, practicality, reliability, and safety. It is also a big winner at the pumps. Packed with clever features, Brighton Tools & Fixings’ Long-bodied 109 CDI variants deliver outstanding economy in the combined cycle of up to 65.7 mpg, and CO2  emissions as low as 112 g/km.

The fourth vehicle, an X-Class pickup, is now the personal transport of managing director Matt Hyde. The imposingly styled four-door, five-seater combines robustness, functionality, strength and off-road performance, with the classical design, comfort, driving dynamics and safety characteristics of a true Mercedes-Benz.

A top-of-the-range X 350 d model, it is powered by a 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel which delivers a muscular 258 hp and 555 Nm of torque over a wide engine speed range, and is paired with a 7G-TRONIC PLUS seven-speed automatic transmission featuring steering wheel-mounted shift paddles.

Mr Hyde founded Brighton Tools & Fixings in 1991 with his father Arthur, who retired a decade ago but remains a director. The company, which operates from headquarters on the Centenary Industrial Estate, stocks a large range of power tools by some of the industry’s biggest names, together with laser and routing products, hand tools and consumables.

“The X-Class is exceptionally smooth to drive, with a refined and very well-equipped interior,” confirmed Mr Hyde, who also uses his pickup to visit sites, as well as to attend meetings with customers, and for general support purposes. “The substantial payload allowance of just under a tonne is useful too, as it means I can transport everything I need without having to worry about exceeding the weight limit.

“Our sales representatives are equally pleased with their new Citans. They were in car-derived vans previously, and the Citan represents a definite step-up in terms of prestige, comfort and all-round quality. It’s also a more practical vehicle in which to carry product samples, catalogues, literature, and the like.”

Equally important to Brighton Tools & Fixings is the Mercedes-Benz ServiceCare Plan arranged by Rossetts Commercials. As a truck and van specialist, the Dealer understands the importance of keeping businesses moving, so offers night-time vehicle maintenance and repair support.

Meanwhile, like all new vans sold through the official Mercedes-Benz Dealer network, the operator’s new Citans and X-Class are backed by three-year, unlimited mileage warranties, and came with MobiloVan cover, which includes free, 24-hour emergency roadside assistance.

“The back-up was a key factor behind our decision to switch to Mercedes-Benz,” confirmed Matt Hyde. “The business is going well and has been growing strongly, but we operate in a tough market. As an independent we have to differentiate ourselves from larger competitors by providing a higher level of service. That means our vehicles must be available for work when we need them, not laid up in a workshop.”

Rossetts Commercials took back the company’s three previous vans and its MD’s former pickup in part-exchange against its new Mercedes-Benz vehicles. “Van sales executive Martin Gearing was very attentive, and I was pleasantly surprised by the competitive cost of the package he put together,” recalled Mr Hyde.

“For less than I expected we’ve been able to upgrade to better vehicles that can only enhance our image in the eyes of established and prospective customers, and hold out the promise of proper, commercially-focused aftersales support.”

www.brightontools.co.uk

‘Tis the season to be jolly with the KNIPEX advent calendar

CHRISTMAS is just around the corner and KNIPEX knows just how to give the festive season even more cheer! The pliers specialist is launching its fantastic advent calendar on 1 December - and there’s a prize to be won every day.

Just follow the KNIPEX Facebook or Instagram page to answer a question every day throughout December. All correct answers will go into a draw and a winner will be selected at random. There will be up to two prizes awarded each day which will include the KNIPEX Twistor16®, KNIPEX CoBolt, KNIPEX Cobra ®, Cable Shears, Diagonal Cutters and many more favourites. And the big prize, to be won on December 24, a KNIPEX Tool Case Big Basic Move, Electric.   

To be in with your chance to win, follow KNIPEX on Facebook and Instagram and answer the questions each day from 1 December.

The KNIPEX advent calendar is ready to make the festive season a very jolly one.

www.knipex.com

A brace of Volvo six tonners for M M Miller

HOUSEBUILDING and ground working contractor M M Miller Ltd of Wick, Caithness, is one of the first to take delivery of the all-new Volvo EC60E compact excavator, launched earlier this year at Plantworx.

The pair of machines have been supplied by SMT GB’s utility equipment dealer for the north of Scotland – CS Machinery Sales Ltd.

M M Miller are no strangers to owning and operating Volvo Construction Equipment products. The company has larger excavators in its plant fleet, as well as two Volvo A25G articulated haulers. “They’re good machines,” is the verdict of managing director David Miller. “We’ve been operating them for a good while and they represent good value for money. They are reliable and appreciated by our operators, as far as creature comforts go. They also hold their value very well, with high residuals when we do decide to change them out.”

The new six tonne arrivals are being deployed to support the company’s main activities, which include housebuilding and ground working projects. Particularly for the latter, one of the EC60E’s has been equipped with a Steelwrist Tiltrotator, making it a highly adaptable and flexible machine for this purpose.

The Volvo EC60E is powered by a Volvo 2.6 litre Stage V low emission engine, producing 58 hp. The machine’s engine is also fitted with a load sensing hydraulic system, which provides fast cycle times and smooth control.

The machine offers a generous horizontal reach of 6.4 metres, a dig depth of 4.0 metres and a lift capacity of 650kg at full reach across carriage in the worst position. The EC60E follows on from the tradition of the EC55 it replaces by boasting a comfortable, spacious cab with a wide and uncluttered floor that is unrivalled in its size class. The instrument panel provides operators with at-a-glance monitoring of all key functions. Operator fatigue is also reduced through the inclusion of easy-grip, high response joystick control levers. The rubber-mounted cabs reduce whole-body vibration and external noise, minimising the rigors of the jobsite. Air conditioning, with well positioned vents, is also a standard feature on these machines.

Operating throughout the Highlands, M M Miller is one of the most successful building and civil engineering contractors in the north of Scotland. The company has its headquarters located in Wick, Caithness, with a regional office based in Inverness. Founded by Callum Miller in 1964, the company is now in the hands of Callum’s son David, who is backed by a strong team of experienced professional surveyors and contract managers.

Working on a diverse range of projects, from minor maintenance works to complex design and build developments, M M Miller has built a solid reputation for itself over the course of the 55 years that it has been in business. The company has also secured street lighting contracts for the local authorities that cover the north of Scotland.

Headed up by managing director Calum Shaw and based at Longman Industrial Estate, Inverness, CSM Sales Ltd is SMT GB’s utility dealer for the whole of northern Scotland.

SMT GB markets Volvo Construction Equipment products, which include: wheeled loaders, articulated haulers, hydraulic excavators, Volvo utility equipment and Volvo road equipment products in Great Britain. There are eight strategically placed customer support centres, a dedicated National Used Equipment Centre and a network of utility equipment dealers, to ensure high quality customer support is maintained throughout the country.

www.smt.network

GAP’s gold excavator raises money for charity

THIS year marked 50 years of GAP Group, and the hire company has been celebrating this golden anniversary throughout 2019 in a number of ways, including being generously gifted a custom-painted gold excavator by Kubota.

GAP’s gold excavator, named “Goldie”, has played a prominent role in the festivities, initially being revealed for the first time at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow for the company’s annual sales conference, which was especially turned into a 50th anniversary celebration this year. Goldie also joined a team of GAP employees at the 2019 Plantworx showcase event, and now the excavator is being put to use to fundraise for charity. 

Goldie is being hired out to GAP’s customers and, for the first whole year, half of all hire revenue generated from the excavator will be donated to charity. To add to this, Kubota will match the amount donated by GAP each month, doubling the final total. The chosen charity is the Lighthouse Club – the Construction Industry Charity; the only charity that provides financial and emotional support to the construction community and their families, raising awareness of mental health in the workplace.

GAP is a long-time supporter of the Lighthouse Club, through which GAP promotes the Construction Industry Helpline to all staff. This is a confidential 24/7 helpline which offers assistance to all construction workers and their families seeking support in the UK and Ireland. The charity doesn’t receive any public funding and relies on the generosity of those within the industry to help them continue their important work.

GAP has always placed huge importance on raising funds for various charities for all kinds of causes and continues to do so. The fact that the Lighthouse Club gives such vital support to those so close to home for GAP has helped to establish the close relationship between the organisations and cement the huge amount of support the hire company gives to the charity.

Keep an eye out for GAP’s gold excavator and get in touch with GAP’s Peterborough Plant & Tools depot by phone (01733 555 516) or email ([email protected]) if you want the chance to hire out Goldie and help GAP raise money for a worthy cause.

www.gap-group.co.uk

'Brexit election must address housing crisis,' says FMB

THE urgent need to build more homes for everyone should be a key priority for all the political parties during the General Election campaign, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB).

The FMB is calling on all the political parties to make house building a national infrastructure priority, along with 11 other key policy areas in its ‘Programme for Government’ published today. 

The programme calls for the political parties to commit to the following:

Housing

  • Make house building a national infrastructure priority and build 1.5 million new homes 
  • Free up more public land for housing and break it up into small plots for small builders
  • Invest in local authority planning departments to speed up the planning process 

Skills 

  • Promote vocational education and invest in Further Education 
  • Reform the UK Apprenticeship Levy so it works better for small companies
  • Introduce a fair and balanced post-Brexit immigration system 

Quality 

  • Licence all UK construction companies
  • Introduce mandatory warranties for building control-approved work
  • Create a new ‘General Builder’ qualification 

Net Zero Carbon

  • Create a National Retrofit Strategy 
  • Invest in upskilling builders to build and upgrade homes fit for the future
  • Cut VAT on home improvement work to 5% 

Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, said: “In this Brexit election the main political parties mustn’t lose sight of the big issues facing the UK such as the current housing crisis. We are still not building enough new homes, and this has led to an affordability crisis and over-crowding. This election is an opportunity for all parties to publish ambitious plans to turn this situation around. Small builders stand ready to help the new Government not only to build more new homes but also make our existing homes more energy efficient.

“Small building companies will also be instrumental in helping the future government tackle other major challenges facing the UK, from helping to tackle the climate crisis to helping to building the hospitals and schools of the future. Our Programme for Government gives 12 clear policies for each of the political parties to adopt to support SME builders. Politicians must not only give the country the gift of resolving Brexit this Christmas, but also a vision for the future of our built environment.”

www.fmb.org.uk

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