Latest innovations and products in the building fabric section of the construction industry.

Leading window, door and curtain walling manufacturer and installer CMS Window Systems has boosted its aluminium division by adding one of the world’s leading systems to its portfolio and obtaining CWCT membership.

The company, which employs more than 200 people at its HQ and main manufacturing facility near Glasgow, has joined forces with Kawneer to become an authorised partner in a move which gives customers access to an even greater range of fenestration and building envelope solutions.

Since its launch almost a decade ago, CMS has enjoyed continued growth as one of Scotland’s market leading design manufacturers and installers of aluminium, PVCu and timber hybrid, window, door and curtain walling systems. The company works with a wide variety of commercial developers and main contractors delivering projects such as newbuild student accommodation, schools, hospitals and commercial offices.

Director of the Aluminium Division at CMS, Stephen Anderson says the decision to join the Kawneer authorised dealer network was born out of the company’s ethos of continual improvement:

“We are constantly investing in our manufacturing processes, design and technology resources to increase production efficiency and make life easier for our customers. We’re also committed to investing in our product range, and becoming part of the Kawneer dealer network reflects this commitment, giving our customers access to an even broader range of architectural aluminium building products and systems from a business that has a reputation as an innovator in the market.”

Strengthening its technical credentials further, CMS has also become a member of the renowned Centre for Window Cladding Technology (CWCT). This reinforces the company’s commitment to delivering the highest technical standards within the building envelope market and its dedication to continuous improvement.

CWCT uses various testing methods, which determine the level of serviceability of a window, façade or cladding system when subjected to various levels of water, air and solid object impact. The final level of certification depends on the pressure reached or the degree of damage caused after impact. The standards that make up the CWCT tests are calculated to give independent verification that windows and cladding designed for the building envelope, will achieve the values expected.

Its membership provides additional assurance to clients and main contractors and sits alongside a variety of key industry memberships and accreditations that CMS currently hold. These range from Investors in People and ISO 14001 at a business management level, right through to Constructionline, CHAS, Secured by Design and Energy Saving Trust recommended status which directly benefit clients

CMS operates from a 15-acre modern manufacturing and recycling facility in North Lanarkshire, with additional facilities in Fife, producing more than 100,000 window units and thousands of square metres of curtain walling every year. The firm provides a 360-degree building envelope solution from design through manufacture, installation and aftercare, an approach that has seen it work on some of the largest housing investment programmes and commercial building projects throughout the UK since its formation in 2006.

For further information visit

A new trade organisation has been established to represent all that’s best in the basement waterproofing industry, with benefits for homeowners, contractors, manufacturers, suppliers, architects and more.

The Basement Waterproofing Association is an independently managed organisation, set up by leading innovators in the field, with numerous industry-related goals at its core.

Collette O’Connor, Chairman of the Basement Waterproofing Association comments: “We know a great deal about effectively protecting underground spaces from water in the ground but that doesn’t mean we should stop learning. This organisation is all about research, shared knowledge, best practice and mutually beneficial relationships for all involved – particularly our customers.

“By choosing to work with one of our accredited member companies, homeowners are assured that they are dealing with one of the industry’s best-informed installers – one that will only start work once all applicable legalities have been met; only use approved materials and practices; and strictly comply to Building Regulations.

“Professionalism and ethics are at the top of our Code of Conduct. Where unscrupulous contractors put profit above all else, our ongoing concern is customer satisfaction – for years after the job is completed. To that end, we encourage and facilitate members to sign up to the Construction Guarantee Solutions Ltd. scheme, offering customers ten-year insurance-backed guarantees that will be honoured, even in the unlikely event that the original contractor should cease trading.”

Businesses can also access professionally designed promotional materials – incorporating their logo and company details – via an online marketing portal on the organisation’s website. “The Basement Waterproofing Association logo should be seen as a signpost for high standards and quality”, Collette continues; “and by helping our members to achieve a consistent, professional style in their promotions, we’re building both our brand and theirs at the same time.

“Our training offering has been designed for specialists from all areas of the trade – from architects to contractors – providing them with the knowledge to comprehensively survey underground spaces and identify appropriate waterproofing solutions. It’s a proactive way of promoting career development within member companies, offering employees an affordable means of furthering their expertise, with three-day courses run across the country, throughout the year.”

Besides detailing the benefits of working with a Basement Waterproofing Association-accredited installer, the organisation’s new website boasts a wealth of information for homeowners, including numerous considerations that might not be obvious to someone planning such work for the first time.

“Radon gas, party wall responsibilities and planning permission”, Collette explains; “they’re all things that can have a significant bearing on a basement waterproofing installation. Our website guides homeowners through matters like these, provides a useful search facility that pinpoints where their nearest accredited installers are based, and invites people to get in touch with their questions.

“It’s great to see our hard work coming to fruition with this organisation. The Basement Waterproofing Association is the authority base that our industry needs and we look forward to it growing and developing as more and more members get involved.”

With PropertECO and 12 branches of the Peter Cox chain having already signed up, other companies interested in learning more about the Basement Waterproofing Association, its various membership options and the latest news from around the industry should visit:

Flat roofing specialists Bauder have once again been awarded the prestigious Investors in People (IiP) Gold status, which recognises high performing organisations that put their people at the heart of their success.

This is the second time that the company, based in Ipswich, has been awarded the highest accreditation of Gold, an accolade that is awarded to only 7% of applicants each year; which is particularly impressive considering over a third of the UK’s workforce used IiP this year.

To achieve this standard, Bauder was rigorously and objectively assessed against a framework of 10 criteria to determine performance; Business Strategy, Learning and Development, People Management Strategy, Leadership and Management, Management Effectiveness, Recognition and Reward, Involvement and Empowerment, Learning and Development, Performance Measurement and Continuous Improvement.

Now in its 24th year, Investors in People has long been acknowledged as the most successful framework for business improvement through people, and its accreditations are regarded as a mark of real organisational excellence around the world. The primary objective of IiP is to optimise workforce performance by championing best practice in people management and equipping organisations with the tools to succeed.

Family-owned company Bauder, who deliver flat roof, green roof and photovoltaic solutions, possess a workforce of over 130 employees located throughout the UK and Ireland; however they are all frequently brought together to participate in many employee engagement and personal development initiatives. Earlier this year, the company also achieved, for the third time, a place in the Sunday Times Top 100 Best Small Companies To Work For, together with a 3 star status accreditation for outstanding workplace engagement.

Commenting on the success Angeline Barnes, HR Manager stated “We truly believe our people are our greatest asset. The accolades provide us with a framework to benchmark and measure our practices and people strategies to ensure we continue to develop, improve and ultimately preserve our inherent cultural ethos.”

BS5534:2014 highlights the role of a roofing underlay’s wind uplift resistance in protecting against stormy weather and preventing costly damage. The considerations it outlines (based on a combination of meteorological, geographical and building physics data) not only establish the minimum standards in the new code of practice, but are also essential to long term peace of mind.

However, while much is being made by various underlay manufacturers and suppliers of achieving BS5534:2014 compliance, the picture may not be quite so straightforward – especially when you consider that a key part of the revised standard refers to altitudes not greater than 100m – and that large areas of the UK are at often surprising heights above sea level.

For example, one might expect parts of Cumbria, Wales and Scotland to exceed that benchmark… but how about Milton Keynes? Or swathes of Essex, Surrey, Nottinghamshire and Northern Ireland? Could this factor expose some unsuspecting developers and contractors to unnecessary risk and make them vulnerable to falling short of the code – and therefore potentially liable in any insurance claims?
Many parts of the UK & N. Ireland are at an altitude that exceeds the 100m above sea level benchmark stated in the new BS5534:2014 code of practice, which may affect compliance and requires very careful choice of roofing underlay.
With world weather looking increasingly unpredictable (and litigation on the rise) anyone specifying a membrane would do well to ensure that, like their project’s roof, everything is covered by a membrane with proven reliability and compliance with all conditions, altitude included.

All underlays are required to clearly state, in literature, certification and on roll labels, the declared wind uplift of the material, and on this basis, the end user can determine the suitability of the material for the site’s location. BS5534 splits the UK (including Northern Ireland) into 5 zones, and to be “fully compliant” at a batten gauge of 345mm, the following test parameters must be met:

  • 1,600 N/M2 when a well sealed ceiling is present
  • 1,900 N/m2 when no ceiling or no well sealed ceiling is present
  • 2,350 N/M2when no ceiling or no well sealed ceiling is present and a permanent dominant opening is present on an external face of the building

But, is it that simple? The new standard also requires compliance with the following conditions:

  • Ridge height not greater than 15m
  • Roof pitch between 12.5° and 75°
  • Site altitude not greater than 100m
  • No significant site topography

Clearly, comprehensively meeting all the requirements of BS5534:2014 could prove challenging for contractors also looking for a reliable, easy-install, trouble-free solution. Fortunately, however, there are products which allow unrestricted use anywhere in the UK, in all building characteristics and under all site conditions. Unsurprisingly these come from a name well-known for over 25 years for proven quality, durability and service: DuPont™ Tyvek®.
Peace of mind: All 3 BBA approved DuPont™ Tyvek® roofing underlays are fully BS5534 compliant, allowing unrestricted use anywhere in the UK & Northern Ireland for all building types under all site conditions.
All three BBA approved underlays in the group: DuPont™ Tyvek® Supro, DuPont™ Tyvek® Supro Plus (with integral tape) and DuPont™ Tyvek® Enercor roof offer unrestricted application when tested in accordance with BS5534:2014 – and with no counter battens required in any zone. This allows contractors to be confident that they in are full compliance, not only with the code, but with all the weathering and thermal performance expectations of an advanced breather membrane.

For further information, literature is available to download at and expert technical assistance is available on Tel. 01275 337 660, option 2 (in Northern Ireland and ROI please call: 087 922 2740)

One of Europe’s leading manufacturers of architectural aluminium systems, Hueck, has been selected by the housebuilding company Berkeley Group as a preferred supplier of window, door and façade applications.

The collaboration will see Hueck’s aluminium systems specified for Berkeley’s residential and mixed use developments in London and the South East.
The recommendation was made by Berkeley’s Supply Chain Task Force after the careful consideration of Hueck’s products and manufacturing capacities of its UK fabricators, as well as the bespoke design services and advanced testing facilities offered by the building envelope specialist.
Leon Friend, project development director for Hueck UK, commented: “Berkeley Group were looking for trusted suppliers they could recommend to their constituent companies for effective integration in future projects in order to add value and reduce risks.
“As one of the most experienced providers of aluminium window, door and façade systems in Europe, Hueck are able to ensure great construction flexibility and a truly bespoke approach in order to provide our clients with a perfectly tailored solution for their projects.
“We’re delighted to have been named as preferred suppliers, and we look forward to our collaboration,” added Leon.
Hueck is a globally active company, and one of Europe’s largest and most innovative aluminium extruders, with a 200 year track record of groundbreaking engineering. A specialist in both bespoke solutions, as well as standard systems, the company offers a wide choice of profiles, all of which are designed to integrate with each other. Hueck’s Lambda range alone consist of 13 different window systems, and 7 door systems. In addition, the company offers the innovative Trigon range of façade systems and the Volato sliding door system.

For more information please visit

Cembrit has developed a Fibre Cement Slates guide to provide specifiers, craftsmen and trades people with the relevant information for the successful design and installation of pitched roofing with the ever popular fibre cement slates.

The book demonstrates how all forms of slating and fibre cement technology offers users peace of mind not available from other suppliers and highlights the wide range of slates and accessories the company offers. The 80-page document, entitled ‘A Guide to Double Lap Slating with Fibre Cement Slates’ provides a full explanation on technical specification, design considerations, colour availability and installation advice.

“Cembrit has been manufacturing fibre cement products for over 80 years” explains Ged Ferris, Marketing Manager of Cembrit. “The content of the brochure draws on that depth of experience to offer detailed advice to anyone wanting to specify and install fibre cement slates. Fibre cement man-made slates continue to grow in popularity due not only to the cost and installation benefits but also aesthetic advantages over concrete tiles. Our aim is to support this move by providing a useful document that covers the key aspects of fibre cement specification.

The Cembrit range of fibre cement slates has grown over the years and now includes Westerland, Moorland, Zeeland, Jutland and Diamond, all offering their own unique appearance. The slates are complemented by matching ridge, ventilation and fixings. Manufactured to the highest European standards using Portland cement together with a formulation of superior blended synthetic and cellulose fibres, Cembrit fibre cement slates are finished with a high quality, semi-matt acrylic coloured coating to the face and edges and a tinted, high performance binder to the back face. Cembrit fibre cement slates are the most accredited on the UK market.

To download the brochures and to find out information on all other Cembrit products, visit

Morris Blitz Court is a residential housing estate located in Hackney that has recently undergone an extensive amount of refurbishment works as part of the Decent Homes Programme. Included within the approved scheme was the refurbishment of all of the building’s balconies and walkways, as well as the transformation of the 1,000m2 concrete podium deck located above the car park into an aesthetically pleasing social space.

Prior to any work commencing on site, Hackney Council hosted regular consultation meetings with all Morris Blitz residents where plans were presented and discussed. Upon receiving approval for the proposed refurbishment works the building was surveyed by flat roofing specialists Bauder to investigate the options available for improving the aesthetics and functionality of the podium deck, and to determine what course of action needed to be taken to ensure the building was watertight. The client’s main priority for the podium deck was for it to be totally free draining so that there was no standing water, which had previously caused problems. Various waterproofing system options were explored, however it was decided that Bauder’s cold liquid applied systems would be the most suitable solution given all the requirements.

One of the major challenges for this project was the low door thresholds connecting to the podium deck, which couldn’t be raised, meaning that the entire build-up for the majority of the cold liquid waterproofing and landscaping elements would need to be less than 100mm in height. Because of these restrictions the only drainage and protection board suitable within the system was Bauder’s Versicell 20, which is just 20mm in height but can withstand extremely high loading. The LiquiTEC system also incorporated 140mm of Bauder’s JFRI insulation in sunken areas of the podium, ensuring a level surface across the deck and combining thermal efficiency with environmental friendliness. The surface of the deck consists of three distinct finishes; permeable paving on the ground floor patios and walkways, artificial turf featuring fibreglass planters to serve as a communal garden and rubber mulch to create a play area for children.

The cantilever style balconies and communal walkways were waterproofed with Bauder’s LiquiBALKON system; demanding a high degree of workmanship from Bauder approved contractor Armour Group due to the amount of intricate detailing requirements. This waterproofing system features PMMA resin technology that provides exceptionally fast curing times and can in fact withstand foot traffic within an hour of being installed. This was essential as the residents of Morris Blitz remained in situ throughout the installation and working hours had to be scheduled between 10am and 2pm to accommodate for school hours. Despite the various design, technical and installation challenges encountered all waterproofing and landscape works were completed on time and to budget much to the delight of all project stakeholders.

Harsha Amin, Project Manager from Hackney Homes, stated “The required refurbishment works at Morris Blitz Court were by no means straight forward. However Bauder were able to deliver a comprehensive, single source waterproofing solution of the absolute highest quality; providing expert technical support throughout the project and demonstrating exceptional levels of workmanship. They caused minimal disruption to residents and have successfully transformed this housing estate in terms of appearance and functionality; creating a visually appealing and inviting communal space where residents of all ages can relax and socialise.”

For more information please visit

Freefoam, a leading manufacturer of a wide range of innovative products for the building industry in Ireland, the UK and Mainland Europe, has made a valuable addition to its popular cladding range and launched Fortex Pro, a new style double shiplap board.

The new product features an increased width of 333mm and thickness of 9mm creating a stronger board through improved profile design and offers greater coverage at 1.665sqmt per board with a quick and easy calculation for specification purposes. Colour choice is important for any exterior building product and as colour specialists Freefoam have now added four new colours to this product range, Misty Grey, Cement Grey, Slate Grey and Cappuccino, making a total of ten. The combination of all these new features and the addition of superior colourfastness and weatherability properties using advanced skin technology makes Fortex Pro the perfect choice for all building professionals.
The Fortex® cladding range includes a double shiplap plank format 300mm wide, a weatherboard style at 170mm wide both with an attractive embossed textured wood effect finish and a 250mm wide board with an authentic render finish.

PVC-U cladding requires minimal maintenance once installed, a major benefit for property owners and a compelling feature for any property developer or public sector housing provider. With significant environmental credentials, being awarded an A+ rating from the Building Research Establishment’s (BRE) ‘Green Guide To Specification’ when installed with standard components, the range makes a real alternative to timber and fibre cement products.

Aidan Harte, Managing Director, Freefoam, comments: “We’ve seen a surge in our Fortex cladding with sales doubling last year. Now is the right time to augment our existing range with a product specifically manufactured for the professional trade market. A robust board with an attractive finish and impressive range of colours will give our customers a valuable addition to their portfolio of products and a real opportunity to develop new business streams”

Systems from Fermacell are now available through bimstore.

Systems from Fermacell, manufacturer of the “ultimate building board”, are now available through bimstore.

Downloadable in the Revit format, more than 30 Fermacell systems for walls, floors and ceilings are now available through the UK’s largest BIM portal,, as well as through

The Fermacell BIM components include steel and timber stud partitions, steel and timber wall linings and SFS wall systems as well as dry floor screed and steel frame and timber ceilings.

Fermacell’s BIM models provide 3D digital replicas of the products as well as the critical COBIE data which an architect will need about them to guide them through the whole design and construction process.

The 3D images complement the drawings and details that are the legal documents in the design and construction process when the information model is a basis for tenders and proposals.

Fermacell general manager Gary Carter said: “Fermacell sees BIM as an integral part of the strategy to maximise the construction process from inception through to completed construction.”

With higher standards of thermal efficiency and security now top priorities for commercial door specification, Jack Aluminium’s high performance Jack Door offers a cost effective solution due to its value engineered design.

The requirement for external doors with advanced locking solutions has been driven in part by three new Secured by Design Guides published in the last year. High energy performance is also increasingly important to building users. Commercial door and window specialist Jack Aluminium Systems has developed its thermally enhanced Jack Door TD68 in standard hook lock, anti-panic and Mag Lock variants. All 3 doorsets have achieved PAS 24 and the system is BM TRADA Q Mark certified so fabricators can easily produce doors that meet Secured by Design approval.

Jack Aluminium designed Jack Door TD68 from scratch to provide a best in class product that is highly competitive. “For low volume applications, system suppliers often adapt an existing product and this adds extra cost for the fabricator that often can’t be passed on,” explains Jeff Pearson, Sales and Marketing Director at Jack Aluminium. “Adopting value engineering principals has helped us innovate products that improve performance without adding unnecessary cost.

“Jack Door enables fabricators to deliver energy efficient doorsets with enhanced security benefits, and remain competitive in the price sensitive construction market.”