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More Than One Fifth Of British Homeowners Don’t Currently Have Home Insurance

October 16th, 2017 No comments

More Than One Fifth Of British Homeowners Don’t Currently Have Home Insurance

New analysis of the priorities of British homeowners suggests that more than 1 in 5 don’t currently have any insurance policy in place, with the majority admitting they simply want to ‘avoid the additional cost’ of taking out the policy.  What’s more, almost 1 in 10 have previously tried and failed to claim due to an invalid or insufficient policy.


As part of ongoing research into Britons’ understanding and perceptions of home insurance policies, a UK company has conducted a new piece of research that highlights the main issues homeowners face when insuring their properties. The study showed that a percentage of British homeowners simply cannot afford or find the correct cover relevant to their own unique properties.


The team at polled 2,256 participants aged 18 and over for the study, all of whom were in full time employment (35+ hours a week), and owned a UK property. The value of homes owned by participants taking part ranged from £150,000 to £850,000.


All those taking part were initially asked if they were in possession of home insurance, with just under four fifths (79%) revealing that they were. Of these participants, the majority (67%) told researchers that their existing home insurance policy had been put in place by a mortgage lender with a financial interest in the property.


Next, the 21% of respondents who didn’t currently have home insurance taken out on their properties were asked to reveal the reason(s) behind this decision, with ‘wanting to avoid the additional financial outlay’ revealed as the most popular answer (37%) followed by ‘forgetting to renew home insurance policy after the last expired’ (18%). A further 9% admitted that they’d ‘struggled to find the correct cover’ for their unique property, and as a result didn’t currently have a policy in place.


To uncover the areas of the UK with homeowners that were least likely to have invested in home insurance, researchers analysed answers to uncover the geographical breakdown of participants, with the number of those without home insurance in each UK region as follows:


  • North East – 14% (of those who didn’t have home insurance lived here)
  • West Midlands – 13%
  • Scotland – 12%
  • South West  – 12%
  • London – 10%
  • Wales – 9%
  • East of England -7%
  • East Midlands – 6%
  • Northern Ireland – 5%
  • North West – 5%
  • South East – 5%
  • Yorkshire and Humberside – 2%

Finally, all participants were asked if they’d ever tried and failed to make a claim through a home insurance policy they had taken out against a property they owned, with almost 1 in 10 (9%) stating that this had happened to them in the past. When asked why, the majority (55%) said it was due to incorrect information given to the insurance company and 39% said they didn’t have the right policy for their claiming needs (i.e. it was insufficient). Of these respondents, the majority (81%) confessed the experience had taught them ‘a valuable lesson’ for the future.

Rob Rushton, Head of says:

“Despite the fact that home insurance is more readily available and easily purchased than ever before, there is a worrying indication from the results of our study that many people in the UK are overlooking the importance of adequate insurance for their property and valuables.

“Of those who don’t have home insurance, the perceived high cost appears to be a key driver behind their avoidance of taking out a policy. Yet when you take into account that a standard policy can cost as little as a few pounds per week, insurance is very affordable for the majority of home owners.

“As for the growing number of consumers struggling to find correct cover due to owning a unique property, that’s where companies that specialise in non-standard home insurance can help out.”


Chancellor unveils extra £400m for transport in North

October 12th, 2017 No comments

Chancellor Philip Hammond will unveil an extra £400m for transport links in the Northern Powerhouse today.

At the Tory conference today, the Chancellor is set to pledge £300m to improve connections between cities in the north that are not directly on the HS2 high speed rail line.

This new funding is aimed at cutting journey times across cities such as Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds and York.

An extra £100m is also being announced to improve 33 road schemes – 10 in Yorkshire and Humber, 10 in the North East and 13 in the North West.

He said: “This investment will go towards ensuring HS2 infrastructure can link up with future Northern Powerhouse and Midlands rail projects – helping the towns and cities of the North reach their full potential.”

Details of individual schemes will be announced in due course.


UK Construction Week opens with a bang!

October 10th, 2017 No comments

UK Construction Week opened its doors this morning to thousands of visitors who are all here to see the largest free construction trade show in action. Nine separate events, over 650 exhibitors, hundreds of product launches, and hours of seminars from the biggest names in the industry will take place over the next few days.

The opening ceremony was hosted by architect and broadcaster, George Clarke, who was also on hand to welcome a group of cyclists who made the trip from London to Birmingham to raise more than £5,000 for Construction Youth Trust, a charity helping young people build better futures by giving them access to training, education and employment opportunities in the construction industry.


Boasting more UK-first new product launches than any other show, visitors to UK Construction Week can expect to see over 10,000 innovative product launches, while networking and participating in learning events. Here are some of the reasons to attend, and what to expect over the next few days.


  1. Post-Grenfell: The latest advice. Over 100 free CPD workshops will cover everything from safety legislation and product safety guidance to fire prevention strategies.


  1. A stellar speaker line-up. UKCW 2017 boasts an impressive line-up of speakers, including George Clarke, Tom Dyckhoff and Steph McGovern.


  1. Emerging trendsetters. Head to The Material Lab Hub to discover the rising stars and cutting-edge brands shaping the world of surfaces.


  1. Offsite. UKCW will contain hundreds of offsite innovations, with more exhibitors in this field than any other event.


  1. If you are looking to further your career or for a job change, UK Construction Week is a must attend event. Find out about career opportunities and roles with leading UK construction firms at the event where the whole industry gathers. Meet recruiters, recruitment agencies, gain invaluable career advice and take up free CPD accredited education


  1. UKCW recognises the brilliant work the industry is doing and wants to reward it. This year will see a number of new, specialist awards. These include: Construction Enquirer Awards, Low Carbon Vehicles Awards, BIM Awards, Offsite Awards and WAN Awards


  1. And finally, it’s not all just work. Why not take the chance to show off at the Dodgeball tournament, relax at the Beer and Ale festival or place your cards at the Casino night alongside key industry professionals?


Consisting of Build Show, sponsored by EasyTrim, Timber Expo, sponsored by Steico, Civils Expo, sponsored by Finning CAT, Plant & Machinery Live, sponsored by AutoTrader Plant, Energy 2017, sponsored by G2 Energy, Smart Buildings 2017, sponsored by KNX, Surface & Materials Show, sponsored by BLFA, HVAC 2017, sponsored by Flakt Group, and Grand Designs Live, UK Construction Week caters for the entire spectrum of the industry from builders, architects, innovators and consultants, each show provides exhibitors with the opportunity to network alongside decision makers and purchasers while showcasing their services and products to thousands of visitors.


For additional information on the full programme of events, please visit


UK Construction Week offers insight into the rebirth in social housing

October 10th, 2017 No comments

UK Construction Week returns next Tuesday to the NEC, uniting over 650 exhibitors with 30,000 trade visitors in what is set to be the largest gathering of the built environment community. This year’s event, running from 10-12 October, is more topical than ever and guests to the free trade show can expect to hear how the industry plans to foster the rebirth in social housing.

The show’s Development and Regeneration Hub offers the perfect antidote to those who want to tackle this key topic, which is especially relevant after the government announcement of an extra £2bn pledged towards social housing. Featuring guest speakers such as Mark Jones from the National House Building Council (NHBC), Ayo Allu, Chairman of The Chartered Institute of Building, Bristol & Bath Regional Capital CIC’s Edward Rowberry, Paul Smith from Bristol City Council, Angharad Palmer of Pocket Living, and Simon Underwood from Elements Europe, there is a wealth of experience and insight ready to be had at the growth session.


What’s more, in light of recent tragic events, UK Construction Week has put together a free and comprehensive CPD programme that will tackle issues surrounding building quality, safety and fire prevention. With the repercussions of Grenfell set to change the landscape for all of us in construction, key topics up for discussion will be: Flammable Building Materials, Building Regulations, Fire Prevention, Improving Safety through technology, as well as Health & Safety. These completely unbiased and factual workshops will give visitors the opportunity to both broaden and share their knowledge, whilst valuable questions are put to industry experts.


Full timetables of the CPD workshops taking place on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday can be viewed on the UK Construction Week website here:


If you’re interested in attending one of the CPD workshops, please note that places are extremely limited, and you should confirm your place as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.


Next Generation Design Brum set to be showcased at UK Construction Week

October 9th, 2017 No comments

The winning design from the Next Generation Design Brum competition by Scale Rule is set to be displayed at UK Construction Week’s Timber Expo from 10-12 October.


Scale Rule is a voluntary initiative that receives funding from the Institution of Structural Engineers and provides a unique insight into the engineering and architecture professions for the next generation of designers – school students. Over a two-day workshop, nine teams were asked to design a ‘fun outdoor pavilion’ which featured exclusively at Birmingham Weekender Festival last month, and is set to be showcased once again at UK Construction Week’s Timber Expo.


Led by a professional team made up of talented engineers, architects and designers from Arup, Curtins, Intervention Architecture and AKSward, the students developed a design concept that consisted of a dome like structure with a number of openings for access and light, while focusing on natural shapes and forms.


Nathan Garnett, Event Director at Media 10, which runs the show, said: “We’re proud to welcome Scale Rule to showcase a perfect example of collaboration by students, local authorities and the built environment profession. As a collective they are extremely passionate about inspiring the next generation of designers, something we support wholeheartedly and will be an area of focus at UK Construction Week. We hope that everyone gets an opportunity to see this remarkable structure in person at the Timber Expo.”


In line with supporting up and coming talent, UK Construction Week will also host Construction Careers Week. This is the perfect opportunity to explore career opportunities and roles with leading UK construction firms, including HS2, Thames Tideway, Morgan Sindall, Sir Robert McAlpine, Taylor Wimpey, Kier, as well as local authorities and housing associations and the UK’s leading architectural practices. Meanwhile, visitors can also participate in over a hundred CPD accredited workshops free of charge.


Consisting of Build Show, sponsored by EasyTrim, Timber Expo, sponsored by Steico, Civils Expo, sponsored by Finning CAT, Plant & Machinery Live, sponsored by AutoTrader Plant, Energy 2017, sponsored by G2 Energy, Smart Buildings 2017, sponsored by KNX, Surface & Materials Show, sponsored by BLFA, HVAC 2017, sponsored by Flakt Group, and Grand Designs Live, UK Construction Week caters for the entire spectrum of the industry from builders, architects, innovators and consultants, each show provides exhibitors with the opportunity to network alongside decision makers and purchasers while showcasing their services and products to thousands of visitors.


For additional information on the full programme of events, free registration, accommodation, and discounted Virgin train travel, please visit


Health & Safety North is coming to Manchester for its biggest ever conference and exhibition

October 6th, 2017 No comments

Health & Safety North is coming to Manchester for its biggest ever conference and exhibition

The Health & Safety North conference and exhibition will take place in Manchester for the first time on October 10th and 11th. The 2017 event has moved from Bolton to the larger EventCity venue in Manchester, where it is expected to attract 2,000 visitors and 200 exhibitors.

The move to the centrally-located EventCity, the second largest venue outside London, also enables the inaugural Fire Safety North event to run alongside Health & Safety North.


Running from 10 to 11th October 2017, the event, the biggest of its kind in the north of England, is set to attract professionals from across the region for two days of educational seminars, industry debates, networking opportunities and equipment displays.


The main conference programme, curated by the event’s educational partner the British Safety Council, promises invaluable presentations from a line-up of industry leaders. Highlights will include a session on the results of a new Britain’s Healthiest Workplace survey and a legal update from legal firm Clyde & Co. Meanwhile, the Safety Dialogue Theatre, sponsored by 3M, provides a forum for panel debates on topics including fall protection, hearing and respiratory health.


Leading industry organisations will be represented at the event, including the National Examination Board for Occupational Safety and Health (NEBOSH), the Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), the British Safety Industry Federation (BSIF), the Energy Institute and the International Institute of Risk & Safety Management (IIRSM).


Tim Else, event director at Western Business Exhibitions, which organises the event, said: “After 10 excellent years at the Bolton Arena, the growing volume of exhibitors wanting to participate and the growing need to satisfy the educational requirements for the visitors to the event was such that we had to seek a larger venue. By moving to Manchester we have more space to meet that demand.


“There is no other event in the north of England providing this level of education, debate and networking for professionals whose job involves health and safety. With thanks to our partners and sponsors, we’ve put together another great programme and look forward to welcoming the safety and health community to our new home in the north.”


Free registration is now open. To register and view the full educational programme online, visit:


Welsh businesses raise thousands in aid of male suicide awareness with charity triathlon

October 4th, 2017 No comments

More than 150 Welsh property professionals from across the country downed their tools and swapped their suits for swimming goggles, cycling shorts and running shoes to raise over £12,000 to tackle male suicide at this year’s Wales Property Triathlon.

The annual triathlon, now in its fifth year, organised by family firm Jehu Group, took place in aid of male suicide prevention charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably), in a bid to help stop male suicide, the leading cause of death for men aged 20 to 49 across the UK.  Jehu has chosen to support the charity following the loss of a respected and popular co-worker in July of 2016

Staff from the Jehu Group and Waterstone Homes, together with many of their clients including Principality Building Society, Berry Smith and Coastal Housing Group took part in the sprint triathlon, which involved a 500m pool swim, 20k bike ride and 5k run.

Taking first prize was Jamie Best, from Melin Consultants while the fastest female was Sarah Smith. The fastest team was Spring Design, made up of Alun Brown, Ian Boobyer and Sion Evans.

Jehu has taken part in a number of fundraising activities throughout the year in support of CALM, its chosen charity for 2017, including a property band night held in Cardiff’s popular music venue, Tramshed.

Anna Jones, Fundraising Director at CALM, said: “We are extremely proud and thankful that Jehu Group have selected CALM as its charity of the year and will help us to raise awareness of the fact that suicide is single biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK.  It was great to see such a fantastic turnout today and the money raised will help make a difference to the lives of men who need support.”

This year’s event, hosted at Pencoed Pool and Rugby Club in Bridgend, included individual competitors as well as teams of three, with separate members swimming, cycling and running.

New to 2017, the property triathlon saw the introduction of a ‘Buddy Up’ scheme, designed by Jehu to partner up individuals looking to complete just one leg of the race with their very own team mates to form a full squad. The novel initiative meant that professionals could still take part even if they did not have a team ready or did not want to complete the full triathlon themselves.

The scheme saw individuals sign up and buddy up with others through social media by requesting which leg of the triathlon they would like to complete. Teams were created from companies such as Trivallis, TC Consult, Linc Cymru and the Building Engineering Services Association.

Lydia Jones of Working Word, is one of the people who chose to #BuddyUp for the triathlon, keen to help raise awareness for the charity after losing a close friend to suicide herself, the actor and singer Dafydd Dafis, in April this year.

Lydia said: “Dafydd sadly suffered with depression most of his life, and it breaks my heart on a daily basis that I’ve lost him, so I was very keen to join Jehu’s triathlon and help raise awareness for CALM’s good work and its helpline.”

Jehu’s original Property Triathlon was started in honour of former Jehu Group employee, Hugh Walker, who sadly lost his life aged 46, just four months after being diagnosed with a brain tumour. The family-run construction and property firm has also supported Llamau the homeless charity prior to its support of CALM.

Managing Director of Development at Jehu Group, Simon Jehu, said: “It’s truly humbling to see our triathlon continue to grow and this year has been our biggest event to date. We are thankful to everyone that has shown their support for CALM, both those who took part in the race and those behind the scenes making valuable donations.

“As a family company, we have always tried to support charities that have a connection to our company in one way or another. Following the tragic loss of a colleague last year to suicide, for us, there was no question in supporting CALM as our charity of the year. As we have seen first-hand, suicide can affect anyone, and so it’s important to us that we can do all we can to support CALM in improving its services, raise awareness and promote understanding of the issues surrounding male suicide.

“The money we have raised is a real reflection of the hard work, dedication and generosity of people working across Wales’ property sector.”

Further donations:

CALM’s helpline is 0800 585858 with webchat available on


Discover the unique Innovation Trail at UK Construction Week

October 2nd, 2017 No comments


UK Construction Week, the largest gathering of the UK’s built environment community, is set to return to Birmingham NEC from 10 – 12 October. The show promises to be the largest and most impressive yet, with an anticipated 35,000 visitors and more than 650 market-leading exhibitors aiming to showcase the most pioneering products, services and working practices.


The construction industry is one of the most innovative industries, with new ways of working, sustainable products, collaboration and continually evolving technologies. UK Construction Week is set to prove this once more with the Innovation Trail – a trail that will bring together the very latest products and services that are changing and will change the way we build.


The Innovation Trail will include the latest in Mobile Mapping from Central Alliance. Central Alliance is the first surveying company to offer the ground-breaking ROBIN LiDAR mapping system that provides three alternative mounting options rolled into one solution, allowing the user to map a variety of areas via walking, driving or flying.


Graphene will showcase its 3D printed graphene shoe with pressure sensor.  This is an example of how adding graphene to pre-existing materials can increase its functionality.  At the least, this demo needs a lap to count the step on the pressure sensor.


Texo Drone will introduce advanced UAV services for construction surveying – the world’s first UAV integrated survey-grade LiDAR system.


Solisco will showcase its innovative Solar EV-Port Systems that offer a balanced solution to power cars with renewable energy whilst helping to balance the grid.


On display at UK Construction Week is the Clevertouch Pro 4k interactive touchscreen, which is tantamount to having a large tablet on the wall encompassing a digital whiteboard, annotation app, browser, access to files and documents, as well as a save and email function. It produces a stunning image incorporating 955% more pixels than a data projector. It’s a display you won’t be able to miss.


Designer and manufacturer of heating and hot water systems, Ecovolt will be showcasing its JouleTherm CeP product, in which technology turns a standard plasterboard wall into a very efficient radiant heater using a special conductive paint. The company will also be exclusively launching its JouleTherm H20 Hybrid Hot Water System that can turn waste heat into stored hot water through mechanical ventilation. If that’s not enough, Ecovolt will also display its JouleTherm JTR Electric Ceramic Heating System with multizonal central control technology.


Potterton Commercial, division of Baxi Group Ltd, will showcase its new ‘Assure’ range of boilers for social housing. Visitors can learn about how the product was developed in partnership with landlords and contractors, which resulted in the boilers incorporating useful safety and energy-saving features, while remaining quick and easy to install.


Introducing the new living comfort control system LUXORliving is the new ?exible comfort control from Theben, offering all-round home comfort without the complexity of many smart home systems. Switching and dimming lights, regulating the heating and controlling shutters, blinds or curtains are just a few features.


ZIP panelling, a technical revolution in construction. The product is a lightweight composite panel board designed for use in building construction for external walls, party walls, internal walls, cladding and flooring.


And last but by no means least, 3THERMO will showcase the world’s first hybrid concealed heating system at HVAC 2017.


Other companies confirmed to participate in the Innovation Trail include Kirona, Durisol, PowerCem Technologies, Safety Point and Sound Impact.


Consisting of Build Show, sponsored by EasyTrim, Timber Expo, Civils Expo, Plant & Machinery Live, Energy 2017, Smart Buildings 2017, Surface & Materials Show (featuring Kitchens & Bathrooms Live), HVAC 2017 and Grand Designs Live, UK Construction Week caters for the entire spectrum of the industry from builders, architects, innovators and consultants, each show provides exhibitors with the opportunity to network alongside decision makers and purchasers while showcasing their services and products to thousands of visitors.


For more information and free registration visit


Research Indicates Incorrect Home Insurance Could Be Costing Britons £125m A Year

September 28th, 2017 No comments

A new analysis of government statistics undertaken by a specialist home insurance provider highlights the fact there could be over three million unoccupied homes in the UK at present, with 1.3m properties without the correct home insurance.


As of April 1st 2016, there were 23,928 properties recorded as vacant and owned by local authorities in England. This number has declined significantly since the turn of the millennium, where local authorities in England recorded owning 87,200 vacant dwellings.

Of the 24,000 empty buildings currently owned by Councils in England, 3,152 are properties within highly desirable London Boroughs, which have been vacant for over six months and are not currently available for letting on the property market.

Figures published in August 2017 by the Resolution Foundation have shown that between the years 2000 and 2014, the number of people with privately-owned, multiple properties in the UK, has risen from 1.6m to 5.2m. The analysis suggested that the majority of these owners were not landlords, with perhaps as many as 3.4m people having an empty property that was not being used to let.

During 2017, the team at specialist home insurance company, have noticed a large increase in the number of home insurance policies taken out for properties with no occupants and not intended to be sublet.

Rob Rushton, Head of CoverBuilder said:

‘‘In recent months we have seen a significant rise in the number of home insurance policies that require insurance for an unoccupied property. A second home can be acquired for various reasons: through inheritance, people working abroad, properties purchased for holiday homes, or purely used as an investment’’.

Insurance providers will define ‘unoccupied’ as a building that is vacant for over 30 days. Unoccupied properties are at much higher risk of damage, particularly as a result of vandals and thieves.

CoverBuilder surveyed 574 owners of unoccupied properties and were alarmed to find out that only 219 (38%) were protected with insurance that covered unoccupancy.

Damian Downey of CoverBuilder said:

“The number of properties incorrectly insured is concerning. With the statistics that we’ve been analysing, there could be 1.3m empty houses with insufficient home insurance across the United Kingdom. If 12% of UK houses are unoccupied for over 30 days, then in line with current, domestic house insurance claim statistics, £125m is potentially being dismissed due to insufficient insurance each year.

He continued

“As one in ten of the UK adult population is a multi-home owner, I would urge anyone with an unoccupied property to check their policy documents and make sure that they have the correct home insurance cover for their property’’.

For more information on unoccupied house insurance, visit



September 27th, 2017 No comments

Bentonite, a clay substance which is often generated from the alteration of volcanic ash, is renowned for its water absorption. These properties make it a valuable material for a wide range of uses and applications, particularly as a waterproofing material in construction of belowground structures such as basements.

Bentonite’s availability in the marketplace in various product forms is well-known – it’s been around for hundreds of years. However, the appearance of natural sodium bentonite in Sika BentoShield MAX LM, a fully-bonded, needle-punched membrane and integrated polyethylene flexible laminate, represents a unique offering. The polymer-modified product, which is applied to external surfaces of belowground structures exposed to ground water, is the only bentonite system that’s BBA-approved to BS EN 1928:2000 standard relating to flexible sheets for waterproofing.


The sealing technology of Sika BentoShield MAX LM combines the superior swelling performance of the sodium bentonite with high strength polypropylene geotextiles. The two geotextiles are interlocked by a needle-punching process forcing fibres from the non-woven layer through and beyond the woven layer. This process forms a physical link between the geotextiles and locks the bentonite granules in between, keeping them contained. The system is finished with a polyethylene membrane which is laminated to the back which gives an additional level of protection.


Fully Bonded

During installation, the woven geotextile layer bonds to the fresh concrete due to the non-woven layer that is pulled through and beyond from the needle punching process.
When the polymer-enhanced natural sodium bentonite granules get wet they form a dense waterproof gel protecting the structure.

Sika BentoShield MAX LM is designed for use in below ground construction. It differs from other BBA-accredited geosynthetic clay liners as it contains specially formulated polymers to enhance performance in contaminated land with a high salt concentration. As well as basements, it is used in cut-and-cover tunnels, backfilled walls and in a variety of more demanding applications, depending on whether water is to be kept in or out.

The seams for vertical applications of many bentonite membranes are vulnerable to failure. Sika BentoShield MAX LM laps, however, are sealed with a tape to provide a watertight solution as well as protect against debris and water intrusion during backfilling the system. The seams on horizontal sections can be lapped and protected with a bed of paste created by mixing BentoShield granules with water. Alternatively, tape can be used on higher risk sites.



Sika BentoShield MAX LM can also be post-applied to concrete structures where pre-applying is not possible. The membrane is securely held in place with a robust fixing system.

Tested and approved to the latest industry standards, Sika provides a 10-year guarantee or 15 when it is used as part of a dual system from Sika.

Sika also provides, free of charge:

  • Full specification and detailing support
  • Sika tool box talk training
  • Site support and inspection

Easy to install, flexible and robust, Sika BentoShield MAX LM doesn’t require a primer or protection board. Its ability to mechanically bond with the concrete, which in turn virtually eliminates water tracking in the event of damage, makes it the ideal membrane for belowground structures dependent on retaining long-term watertightness.

For more information visit: