Latest innovations and products in the sustainability sections of the construction industry.

UK Construction Week is pleased to announce that Green Party leader Natalie Bennett is the latest name confirmed to speak at the inaugural Energy 2015 event this October.

Speaking alongside Adam Chase – Director of E4tech (UK) Ltd, Stephen Joseph – Chief Executive at Campaign for Better Transport and Claire Haigh – Chief Executive Officer at Greener Journeys, Natalie will discuss the future of sustainable transport at 12:00pm on 7th October at the Energy Hub. Exploring the social, economic and environmental considerations of greener transport, Natalie will bring significant knowledge and experience to the discussion, providing a high-level insight to a politically charged and timely topic.

Natalie commented: “It is important to provide consistent, predictable, long-term support for the development of the construction industry and in particular the uptake of greener and more environmentally friendly methods of building and retrofitting. Of all the components of the construction supply chain, transport has one of the greatest potentials to offer significant savings and improved performance if we invest in the right initiatives.”

Richard Morey, Group Events Director at Media 10, the event company producing UK Construction Week, commented: “We are thrilled to have such an influential political figure as Natalie Bennett speaking at this year’s UK Construction Week. The seminar content at the show will be right at the cutting edge of political debate about the construction industry and will provide an inclusive environment for high level discussions that will have real influence on the way we trade, build, learn and live.”

Natalie has been the elected leader of the Green Party since September 2012, previous to which she was the Coordinator of Camden Greens and founding chair of the Green Party Women’s Group. Born in Sydney, Australia, Natalie has lived in London since 1999 and originally began her career as a journalist, working for several national titles. Natalie has worked on a wide variety of policies for the Green Party and, with a degree in agricultural science, is the only political leader in the country with a scientific background.

In addition to Natalie’s contribution Energy 2015 will be supported by an extensive seminar programme of debates, practical workshops and panel discussions. Drawing on the knowledge of the show’s event partners, such as the British Photovoltaic Association (BPVA), the content schedule will cover key industry topics including securing investment, renewable technology, energy storage and energy efficiency.

Taking place at the Birmingham NEC from 6 – 11 October (with the trade only days from 6 – 8 October), UK Construction Week will be the biggest construction trade event the UK has seen in years. Bringing together nine shows under one roof, the event will unite 1,000 exhibitors with more than 55,000 visitors.

As well as Energy 2015, visitors will be able to attend the Build Show incorporating Civils Expo, Timber Expo, HVAC 2015, Surface & Materials Show, Kitchens & Bathrooms Live, Plant & Machinery Live, Smart Buildings 2015 and Grand Designs Live.

For more information please visit or follow @UK_CW on Twitter.

The listed 19th Century former Schoolhouse overlooking the Dublin mountains was renovated and extended to create a new energy efficient residential family home.

So that the exterior facade of the existing property was not altered in any way, internal insulation was installed to the interior of the stone walls of the original house.

Due to the build up of condensation behind conventional insulation when applied to single leaf construction, it became apparent that a “breathable insulation system” would be required. Remmers IQ Therm was chosen as it has the highest level of insulation for given thickness of breathable systems.

The original U-value of the wall was approx 3.3W/m2K and was improved to 0.33W/m2K.

Remmers IQ Therm is a complete system of fixing/insulation and finishing available in 3 board thicknesses.

The renovation was followed on RTEs “Room to Improve” house renovation show with Architect Dermot Bannon.

A stunning sustainable roof installation has been completed by roofing specialist Bracknell Roofing at Center Parcs’ new £250m Holiday Village in Woburn Forest, Bedfordshire.

The team was commissioned to carry out the roof works due to its expertise in sustainable roofing solutions and the recently completed project, which was shortlisted in the Roofing Industry Awards 2015, saw the Bracknell team install Western Red Cedar Shingles as an alternative to traditional roof tiles to the site’s main centre building.

Housing a number of restaurants, the structure sits at the heart of the site’s ‘Village Square’ and the innovative roof has been installed to deliver optimum aesthetic appeal, as well as boost the building’s sustainability credentials.

Timber shingles supplied by John Brash Limited were chosen for the roof covering due to the site’s location in Woburn Forest and, being a low carbon material, met the demanding sustainability requirements.

Bowmer & Kirkland was the main contractor on the new build and appointed the specialist Bracknell Roofing team. Steve Marsh, contracts manager for Bowmer & Kirkland, comments: “On a high profile project such as this we needed a roofing expert we could rely on completely. We have worked with Bracknell Roofing before so knew it had the in-house skills to tackle a high profile project of this scale. Shingles are often a complex roofing material to work with, due to the natural variation in colour and grain, which is another reason we appointed Bracknell as a specialist partner.”

The success of the project has been reflected in its shortlisting in the Roofing Industry Awards 2015, which are led by the National Confederation for Roofing Contractors to recognise outstanding workmanship and safety across the roofing industry.

Dave Cook, regional contracts director at Bracknell Roofing, adds: “At Bracknell Roofing, we’re committed to delivering bespoke services and solutions to meet our customers’ individual needs. For this project, due to wooded surroundings at the site, it was important that we created a roof space to complement the natural vernacular, as well as deliver sustainable results. We were delighted to work alongside Bowmer & Kirkland to achieve just that.”

Bracknell Roofing is part of the Etex Group, a major European construction company, and is committed to the ongoing investment of skills and development across its national network of branches. The company works as both a principal contractor and sub-contractor, depending on customer needs.
To find out more about how a project could benefit from Bracknell Roofing’s specialist skills, call 08705 626800, or visit 

With the recent introduction of the heat network (Metering & Billing) regulations for District and Communal heating systems, building owners, developers and Housing Associations must now ensure meters are installed in each dwelling to accurately measure energy use for residents. Prior to these regulations it was common place for residents to pay a flat rate for heating and hot water, which was not based on usage but just divided equally by all dwellings.

Evinox Energy offer a simple solution to meet the regulations with their PaySmart® pre-payment technology, which is inbuilt in every ModuSat® Heat interface unit. Not only is the technology integrated, it can also be activated remotely at any time, providing a flexible billing approach.

The Evinox Energy range of ModuSat® heat interface units is the only product available that features integrated pre-pay ready billing technology. Other pre-payment systems require additional hardware to be installed in the dwelling, which can add cost to the project. In addition, many other solutions are also wireless, which may sound attractive, but can bring a host of issues especially where there is an unstable connection. Unlike our hardwired Bus or Ethernet system, which is not susceptible to any of these wireless connectivity issues.

The PaySmart® system enables residents to be in control of their own energy bills by paying in advance and therefore removing any burden of building up unpaid bills or debt. Unlike traditional pre-payment systems, the process of adding energy credit to the PaySmart® system is automated so there is no requirement for the resident to insert a card for activation. Residents can purchase their energy online using our Residents Website 24hrs a day, at a local Payzone outlet, by monthly Direct Debit or Standing Order, using our Web App on a smart phone or tablet any time or over the telephone.

Evinox Energy offer various metering & billing solutions for heat networks. Contact us today on 01372 722277 or visit for further information.

St Modwen & WDS call on Panasonic for great energy savings

Panasonic was called upon by Woodhouse Environmental Services Ltd to provide equipment for call centre giant, WDS, to retrofit its busy offices with an energy-efficient Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system. Working against strict time and space constraints, Panasonic’s VRF systems coupled with large ducted and wall mounted indoor units were specified for a quick, simple and energy efficient install.

WDS negotiated with the building owners, St Modwen Properties PLC, a multi-million pound property development and investment company, to redevelop one of three buildings at the Discovery Court Business Centre in Bournemouth.

With the brief to remove and replace the old, existing system with a high-performance, easy-to-install HVAC system, the design and build contractor, Woodhouse Environmental Services Ltd, required a product that offered a large selection of different units, providing a maximum performance system to cater for this large building.

WDS Call Centre (a part of the Xerox group) provides customer service solutions to some of the world’s best known technology and communications brands including Tesco mobile, Google and many other blue-chip brands.

This complete system would need to cater for the high density office, providing exceptional heating and cooling efficiencies whilst maintaining close conditions, introducing continuous fresh air and removing stale exhaust air, ensuring a comfortable work environment at ideal temperatures. The install was to be undertaken whilst the tenants were still in residence. This meant that it was imperative for staff disruption levels to be kept to an absolute minimum.

Woodhouse Environmental Services initiated a fast track install programme between June 2013 and October 2013, splitting the renovation into three phases to cover each ‘zone’ of the building, satisfying a tight budget, and remaining within the allocated time.

In the first phase, Panasonic’s integrated VRF and heat recovery ventilation systems were installed to replace the existing air cooled chilled water system operating on R22 along with a ducted fan coil system, which no longer provided the efficient and reliable service in this demanding application. Specifying Panasonic’s VRF unit made for an all-round easy-to-use system, whilst it’s clever, innovative integrated technologies meant wasted energy was avoided and significant savings could be made on the buildings annual energy bills. Additional extras including an energy monitoring touch screen control with multi-zone temperature adjustment, making this Panasonic system the efficient, ideal replacement that was so desired.

As part of the second and third phases, Panasonic’s ducted indoor and wall mounted units were also incorporated in the building refurbishment. Not only were these systems integrated to provide fresh air input and stale air removal, but they also fitted the outlined noise criteria. Panasonic was able to supply all of this equipment on short notice so as not to delay the project.

As a result, Panasonic proved to provide the most energy efficient units on the market, suitable for this large-scale project. With approximately 250 members of staff based in each zone, the quick turn-around, replacing the old systems and fitting brand new Panasonic equipment, meant staff were able to move straight back into the refurbished offices immediately on completion.

For further information please visit

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Solar Windows completes window replacement project for Wales and West housing

Leading commercial fabricator Solar Windows has just completed a large scale project for Wales & West Housing (WWH) under a framework agreement which represents the latest phase in a successful twelve year association between the two organisations.

Originally ‘partnered’ together in 2002, Solar Windows remains a key supplier to WWH and continues to manufacture and install REHAU PVC-U windows and doors for the housing association’s ongoing maintenance and replacement programme.

Most recently, Solar has installed 450 casement and tilt and turn frames in the REHAU TOTAL70C system in the West Lee housing complex in Cardiff, to replace single glazed aluminium windows which were in place previously.

This was part of a major refurbishment project designed to improve both the energy efficiency and security of the 130 flats and maisonettes within the complex. Alongside cavity wall insulation, the double glazed windows are key to improving the comfort levels for residents and reducing their energy costs.

The windows have been foiled in a Rosewood woodgrain finish and those which overlook the busy Cowbridge Road East in Cardiff have been fitted with acoustic glazing to reduce the internal noise levels.

As well as the windows, Solar Windows has also manufactured and installed fire doors for the communal areas and stairways. These feature an intumescent material which expands in heat to create the barrier required to achieve a 30 minute fire rating.

They have also supplied their ‘Solardor’ GRP composite external doors with improved security to provide extra reassurance for residents.

Solar Windows and WWH marked the completion of the project with a joint visit to the West Lee complex where WWH Chief Executive Anne Hinchey thanked all of the team involved for their efforts and hard work.

Ms Hinchey said: “Our West Lee scheme has undergone extensive refurbishment work and energy efficiency improvements over the past year for the benefit of our residents. The WWH team, Solar Windows and our further partners have worked incredibly hard throughout the project to deliver this work to the highest standard, for which I want to thank all involved.

“I’m pleased to say that feedback from our residents living at West Lee has been fantastic. We hope that they will enjoy the benefits of the improvements for many years to come with warmer homes, improved security and substantially reduced energy costs.”

Further information

Solar Windows is one of the UK’s largest commercial window and doors fabricators specialising in work across the public sector. Further details are available at

Further reading