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20 Questions that need answers in light of Grenfell Fire

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on June 26, 2017 at 1:45 AM Comments comments (0)

20 Questions that should be answered quickly in the light of the Grenfell Disaster

(originally posted on twitter on 16th June 2017 by our MD Geoff Wilkinson @geoffwilkinson)


1: Can we see the Architects plans & specifications?

2: Were these approved?

3: Were the fire service consulted?

4: Can we see a copy of the consultation respons?

5: How many site inspections were made?

6: Can we see records of those inspections?

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What should landlords do in response to Grenfell Tower Tragedy

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on June 25, 2017 at 3:55 AM Comments comments (0)

Advice on what to do to reassure residents

Here is the current guidance for landlords in light of emerging findings from Grenfell Tower


  • Check that the fire risk assessment has been carried out within the previous 12 months and that the recommendations within the action plan of the assessment have been completed;
  • Check that there have been no material changes (to the building, the fire safety measures or the oc...
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From the flames of the Great Fire

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on September 5, 2016 at 1:15 PM Comments comments (0)

 

This week sees the 350th Anniversary of the 1666 Great Fire that devastated London and led to the introduction of the first proper system of Building Regulations in the UK


Laws had previously existed to reduce the risk of fire, prohibiting building with wood or roofing with thatch, but these laws had largely been ignored. Despite a number of previous fires timber-frame remained the most commo...

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Sponsored Water Pump

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on August 2, 2016 at 6:30 AM Comments comments (0)

We are pleased to provide an update on the Elephant Pump we sponsor in Africa in partnership with Aquaid Water Coolers

Our pump is now live and located in Zimbabwe in Manicaland – a province in the north eastern highlands of Zimbabwe.

 

An Elephant Pump is illustarted below and can easily provide safe drinking water for upwards of 300 people, so the impact on the community where the well is built is profound and far reaching.

 

These i...

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Theo Paphitis

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on August 2, 2016 at 5:15 AM Comments comments (0)

We are pleased to announce that we have been selected by Theo Paphitis as a winner of his weekly SBS competition on Twitter.

Theo is best known for appearing on Dragons Den on BBC Two, but is also Chairman of Ryman Stationery, Boux Avenue lingerie and Robert Dyas, as well as joint owner of Red Letter Days. Theo is also a mentor and investor to many other business acquainted via the Den including Wed...

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Party Walls

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on June 14, 2016 at 12:25 PM Comments comments (0)

A question we often get asked is can we cover a Party Wall Award as part of the service and unfortunately the answer is no.

As a Building Inspector we are being paid to check on the safety and conformity of the Building Owner's works from one side of the boundary.

We will not normally enter the neighbours property at any stage, certaintly not before works start and will not be able to assist with any damage claim.

Therefore it is important that you appoint your own party wa...

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Building Control vs Consumer Protection

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on June 14, 2016 at 11:50 AM Comments comments (0)

The role of Building Control is often assumed to cover consumer protection, especially in small domestic projects, where the Building Inspector is often the only professional involved in the project.

In fact Building Control do not offer consumer protection, and are there only to ensure certain minimum statutory rules are adhered to. Its easiest to think of Building Control in terms of a car where Building Control would be the equivalent of an MOT test rather than a 7 year manufacturer'...

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Edinburgh school closures

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on April 11, 2016 at 9:40 AM Comments comments (0)

You may have seen in the news that safety fears have forced the closure of 17 schools in Edinburgh, Scotland, leaving 7,000 pupils at home after the Easter break.

Ten primaries, five secondary's and two additional support needs schools have been shut due to concern over the standard of construction carried out under a public private partnership (PPP) contract approximately 10 years ago.

The alarm was first raised in January this year when a wall at one of the schools, Oxgang's Pr...

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Approved Documenty B Consultation

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on February 1, 2016 at 8:55 AM Comments comments (0)

The inquest into the July 2009 Lakanal House fire, in which six people lost their lives, heard that even the experts disagreed on the interpretation of Approved Document B.

 

The coroner’s “Section 43” letter to the then communities secretary Eric Pickles recommended a review of Approved Document B to improve usability which recieved much press attention in November 2015. See

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Ministers to pilot competition in processing planning applications

Posted by Geoff Wilkinson on January 7, 2016 at 5:15 AM Comments comments (0)

Planning minister Brandon Lewis has announced proposals to pilot competition in the processing of planning applications.

This move was signalled during the first session of the report stage of the Government’s Housing and Planning Bill.

The proposal will test whether planning could follow the lead from Building Control with  “alternative providers” handling planning applications.

Lewis said the proposals would give the Secretary of State the power to i...

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