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Latest ONS figures reveal dip in construction output

The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reveal a 4.3% fall in construction, the first year-on-year fall since May 2013. In August 2015, output in the construction industry was estimated to have decreased by 4.3% compared with July 2015 and by 1.3% compared with August 2014. All new work decreased in August 2015 compared with July 2015 by 3.6%, repair and maintenance (R&M) decreased by 5.6% over the same period. There have been falls in all work types in August 2015 with infrastructure reporting the largest decrease. The figures also reveal that new housing output fell by 3.0% in August from the previous month. Both private and public new housing output fell by 1.6% and 9.9% respectively over the same period. In comparison with August 2014, new housing output fell by 5.8%, with public housing providing all of the fall, down 28.9%, while private housing increased by ...

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Fenestration challenges

Jon Palethorpe, commercial director at Technal, looks at current trends in fenestration design and specification, as well as key considerations for the specification of high performance windows.

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Second renewable energy firm to enter administration sparks industry alarm

Calls for the Government to rethink its green policies have grown louder following the collapse of two leading Green Deal and renewable energy installers. Climate Energy has become the second UK-based energy efficiency solutions provider to enter administration, following yesterday’s announcement by Mark Group that it too had called in the administrators, leading to the combined loss of over 1,000 jobs. Less than three months ago Mark Group, installer of energy saving measures including insulation and solar panels, was bought by SunEdison. But yesterday, SunEdison confirmed it was scaling back its UK presence and Mark Group managers confirmed they had repurchased the business, taking the “regrettable decision to put the business into administration”. Neil Marshall, chief executive of the National Insulation Association today repeated his call for the Government to fast track the development of its new long term, sustainable policy framework for home energy efficiency and introduce urgent transitional ...

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Sustainable fabric

The envelope design of a new Tesco ‘eco’ store in Suffolk was required to meet exacting environmental criteria, whilst still remaining visually sympathetic to the local surroundings. Building Products reports.

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Marshall-Tufflex extends its aluminium trunking range

Marshall-Tufflex is further expanding its cable management range with the launch of a sleek new 170 mm aluminium profile. Elegance 170 Aluminium (170 x 55 mm) is designed to be hard-wearing and lightweight, making it suitable for office and educational projects where a robust yet stylish cable management solution with extra mechanical strength and a higher cable capacity is required. The Cat 6, 6a and 7/Part M compliant dado/skirting profile has rounded corners, can be used as a single, double or triple compartment and utilises a single cover. It is finished with a high quality powder-coat for a modern, blemish resistant surface. Pre-punched dividers deliver quick installation. The new profile builds on the success of established Elegance 110 Aluminium (110 x 55 mm) a small dado trunking system with a single cover. It is particularly useful for workshop or laboratory installations, or in commercial environments where extra mechanical strength is necessary. The Elegance range ...

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On the Table: Information Technology

With the Government’s deadline for Level 2 Building Information Modelling (BIM) just around the corner, we asked our panel of BIM-compliant manufacturers how they have approached adoption of the technology in its infancy, and how engagement has benefitted them and the industry so far.

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Re-vamped Manchester Victoria station revealed

The re-vamped Manchester Victoria station was unveiled today, following a £44m upgrade. The station, once dubbed Britain’s worst train station, features a new roof built from 410 ETFE cushions, which is the same material used at the Eden Project in Cornwall. The roof was designed to allow natural light into the station and is held up by 15 giant steel ribs up to 96 m long. The upgrade, which was built by Morgan Sindall and designed by BDP, also includes a bridge linking the station to the neighbouring 21,000-capacity Manchester Arena. The station concourse has been fully refurbished and there is a new restaurant, first-class lounge, shops and ticket barriers. It has also incorporated the Metrolink tram network into the redeveloped station, with four new tram platforms and three new tracks. The scheme, which was carried out while the station remained operational, is part of a £1bn investment made by ...

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Payment procedures

Jahanara Hussein, senior associate, and Tom Botterill, trainee solicitor at Pannone, part of Slater & Gordon, outline the importance of adhering to agreed payment procedures, in light of two recent cases which saw expensive disputes ensue from disagreement over contract payment terms.

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Manufacturer optimism remains high, despite weaker Q3 product sales

Weaker product sales during Q3 has not dampened optimism over future prospects, according to the Construction Products Association’s latest State of Trade Survey. The survey found that construction product manufacturers’ sales increased for a tenth consecutive quarter, but growth was held back by weakness in exports. This dip, however, hasn’t impacted growth forecasts, as 64% of heavy side product manufacturers and 79% of light side product manufacturers reported that they anticipate a rise in total sales over the coming year. Rebecca Larkin, CPA economist, said: “We have now seen ten quarters of sustained growth reported by construction product manufacturers, led by demand from the private housing, industrial and infrastructure sectors. “On the downside, compared to a year earlier, 27% of heavy side firms and 67% of light side firms reported a rise in sales in Q3. These balances were lower than those reported in Q2 and the lowest for the heavy ...

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Seal of approval

With clients continually demanding more from window sealant products, Peter Thompson, general manager, ISO-Chemie UK, explains why solutions need to deliver both high levels of performance and ease of installation.

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