News

Law firm notes rise in asbestos deaths

The latest statistics from the HSE show that asbestos is the biggest killer of work-related diseases caused by past working conditions.

Calling all apprentices

Pronto Plumber is hosting an apprentice meet-and-greet day on 10 September at Bedford College's Plumbing Centre.

Driving U round the bend

HomeServe's drainage engineers recovered over 5,000 pairs of pants, knickers and socks from the nation's pipes last year.

Glasgow contract worth £120 million available for subcontractors

A Scottish building contractor is looking for subcontractors for a two-year framework covering up to £120 million-worth of work across Glasgow.

Installers should wait and see before registering for 'confusing' renewable schemes

Lack of information on the installer schemes that form part of the Green Deal is likely to cause confusion, according to the Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors.

Construction survey reveals private and public sector split in fortunes

A survey by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors has revealed that private sector construction rose in Q2 this year, while government cuts saw public sector work fall.

One month left to declare unpaid taxes or face higher penalties

HMRC has warned plumbers have until 31 August to tell HMRC about any tax they owe, and to make arrangements to pay any interest and penalties.

Football clubs can compete to be the best loo-ser

Football fans can enter their club into a competition to win a £100,000 makeover for the fans' loos from some of the industry's leading bathroom companies.

Travis Perkins announces 54% rise in turnover

Builders' and plumbers' merchant Travis Perkins has reported turnover up 54% to £2.3 billion in its latest six-month financial statement.

Find out how fitting an Oxyvent tank can improve existing central heating systems

Watch the installation of an Oxyvent tank in a gas boiler system in East London to find out the benefits the new technology can provide.

Plumbing company charges £40 a minute

A plumbing company has come under fire by a customer for charging over £200 for a five-minute callout, according to a local newspaper.

HVCA plans new employment framework for plumbers

HVCA is in dialogue with a group of major UK building engineering services contractors to introduce a new employment framework for plumbers.

Coroner calls for boiler safety law after death

A coroner has called on the government for legislation to minimise the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning after the death of a tenant was attributed to a boiler leak.

'Hard graft' will see plumbers succeed in a tough economy

Despite difficult economic conditions and rising costs, 'hard graft' is the key to plumbing success, claims Pimlico Plumbers founder Mullins.

Employer fined for harassing plumber

Employer Martyn Crute has been handed a restraining order by Lincoln Magistrates Court, Lincolnshire, for sending threatening texts and voicemails to a former plumbing employee.

Plumbing contractors could soon face health and safety bills of £133 an hour

Plumbing contractors and other companies that contravene health and safety laws could have to pay £133 an hour for Health & Safety Executive (HSE) inspectors investigating their offences, under government plans to recover costs.

Rising fuel prices are holding back plumbing businesses

The high price of fuel is badly affecting plumbing companies as customers refuse to accept higher prices, warns the Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors.

Merchant campaign calls for reduction in MCS paperwork

A campaign by the heating and plumbing sector, spearheaded by merchant Mick Williams, is urging government to reduce the amount of administration required for the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS).

Metal thefts are costing local authorities millions

Metal theft is rising nationwide as thieves are attracted by the rising prices of scrap metal, costing local authorities millions as police reports indicate a surge in plumbers reporting pipe theft.

Vandals torch B&Q car park display

Vandals set light to a wooden summer house display at a B&Q branch in Bolton town centre, in what the store manager called a "very dangerous" act.

B&Q sales fall by 6.7%

B&Q sales fell 6.7% during the three months to 16 July as a result of the demise of the Focus DIY chain, according to a trading update by parent company Kingfisher.

Asbestos warning for heating and plumbing trades

Plumbers and heating engineers must know their responsibilities or risk serious illness when it comes to dealing with asbestos, Kevin Wellman, acting chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Plumbing & Heating Engineering, has warned.

Mixed reaction to government's renewable heating funding

There has been a mixed reaction from the heating industry to the government's announcement of up to £1,250 funding for the Renewable Heat Premium Payment Scheme.

Wolseley UK sells Build Center to Jewson

Wolseley UK has agreed to sell its Build Center division to Jewson. Build Center has 155 branches across the UK and employs 1,600 people.

Notify for free with HETAS this summer

HETAS is offering 10 free job notifications for all new applications before the end of August this year. The offer applies to anyone applying to join the HETAS competent persons scheme for solid fuel, wood and biomass installations.

OFTEC launches one-year registration

OFTEC has launched a 12 month registration option for both individuals and companies. The new annual registration offers a flexible short-term alternative to the existing five-year registration, which is still available.

Teach your customers basic plumbing

West London plumbing contractor Staunch & Flow is launching plumbing courses for absolute beginners this autumn to help its customers avoid call out fees.

Copper thieves strike in Southampton

Police in Southampton have warned plumbers to be on their guard against thefts of copper piping after two similar incidents in one night.

Plumbers face "survival of the quickest"

Plumbers must adapt quickly to the changing business climate, says Charlie Mullins of Pimlico Plumbers.

Newspaper looks into plumbing call-out fees

The Guardian newspaper has highlighted what it describes as "ridiculous overcharging" by some plumbing companies for emergency work.

Carbon monoxide alarms will be included in the Green Deal

The Green Deal will now require a carbon monoxide (CO) alarm to be fitted in every home whose residents are at risk of CO poisoning.

Asbestos causes death of heating engineer

Asbestos caused the death of a heating engineer in Southend, a coroner has ruled.

APHC vows to tackle industry red tape

New APHC president John Breakell has vowed to tackle the "unsustainable" problem of industry fragmentation, red tape and over-assessment.

Careers speed dating for Stoke Newington pupils

Four Hackney Homes apprentices recently went careers 'speed dating' at Stoke Newington School in Hackney.

Plumbing excluded from DIY social housing maintenance pilot

Plumbing and heating are excluded from plans that see tenants rewarded for maintaining their homes, even though unblocking drains are part of the DIY scheme.

Fuel poverty statistics 2011 announced

Statistics from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) have been published, revealing that fuel poverty in the UK has risen by more than 20%.

SkillPIPE announces finalists for competition

SkillPIPE 2011 has named the finalists who will compete in September to be named the competition's UK champion.

Gas fitter fined for 'dangerous' installation

Leamington Magistrates have fined an installer £4,000 for an 'immediately dangerous' gas fire installation.

Wolseley UK sells Electric Center

Wolseley UK has announced it is to sell its Electric Center business to Edmundson Electrical.

Thousands of construction firms gone in two years

Plumbers reeling under the loss of work will not be surprised that 5,000 construction firms have closed since 2009.

British Gas announces price increase

British Gas has announced it is increasing its domestic tariffs for gas by an average 18% from this August.

Revealed: What Brits really get up to in the bathroom

Escaping the family, getting ready for a date, recovering from a hangover or having a romantic rendezvous are just a few of the things we get up to.

Apprentice receives royal nod

Matt Taylor has been presented with a prestigious City & Guilds Medal of Excellence from the Duke of Edinburgh at the recent Lion Awards Ceremony in London.

Bathroom firm administrators make 600 people redundant

The administrator of a collapsed kitchen and bathroom firm has made nearly 600 people redundant.

Late payments still a 'serious problem' for small firms

Late payment remains a serious problem for small firms, the Federation of Small Businesses has warned.

Green Deal trials begin across the UK

Businesses such as Homebase and B&Q will soon begin home insulation trials to gauge the likely consumer takeup of the Green Deal.

Chemical water treatment gets official EST backing

The domestic heating chemical water treatment industry has achieved a real boost to its energy-efficiency credentials with the announcement that the Energy Saving Trust will endorse chemical inhibitors from Autumn 2011.

Homeowners 'improve rather than move'

Increasing numbers of homeowners are deciding to improve rather than move home, according to new research from The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, which could provide new opportunities for tradesmen.

Ed Miliband weighs into solar feed-in tariff fight

Labour leader Ed Miliband has called for the government to rethink its plans to reduce the tariffs available for solar panels.

More focus should be on SMEs for microgeneration

Mick Williams of plumbers' merchant Williams & Co is urging government to recognise the role of small business for microgeneration.

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