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Biomass power plants already receive government support, but the industry wants more. However, the type of technology used to convert coal-fired power stations to biomass is not currently eligible to bid for the new subsidies.

Smith Brothers Stores has launched an app, now available on either Google Play and the Apple Store, just search ‘Smith Brothers Stores’ on either platform to download the app.

Baxi Heating’s customer service division has scooped an accolade at the UK Customer Experience Awards.

Keyline has opened a new rail and geotechnics division in Leeds. This investment will reportedly deliver increased accessibility and support to those contractors who will be working on the upcoming High Speed Two (HS2) project.

The Geberit Awards 2016 is in its third year, and installers from throughout the bathroom, plumbing and heating industries will battle it out to be crowned the best in the business.

Gatic national sales manager Steve Mascall.

Independent specialist drainage distributor Stanley John Ltd (SJL) based in Greenham is one of the largest merchant stockists of Filcoten, the channel drain system from Gatic Civil Drainage. SJL added Filcoten Self, Filcoten Tec and Filcoten Pro to its range 12 months ago and is experiencing good sales.

The Bathroom Showroom team showing an installer the displays.

The Bathroom Showroom has launched a new rewards programme to offer loyal City Plumbing Supplies trade account holders the chance to earn points on showroom product purchases and business referrals.

Starrett is bringing its expertise in band saw machines and blades to a new demonstration zone in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire. Based on the Newton Trading Estate, within the facility of engineering distributor Tewkesbury Saw, the showroom will exhibit Starrett’s range of band saw machines. The area will be open to the public six days a week from 23 November.

Plumb and Parts Center has launched an online shower selector tool for installers.

MKM Building Supplies has climbed 69 places in the rankings of the latest Sunday Times Grant Thornton Top Track 250.

The doors are now open to Kent Blaxill’s new decorating centre in Chelmsford.

A new Kent Blaxill decorating centre in Chelmsford opened its doors last week, with Neil Ogilvie, chief executive of the Painting and Decorating Association, cutting the official ribbon in front of company customers, staff and suppliers.

An aerial shot of the Simmons of Stafford site.

Huws Gray has confirmed the recent acquisition of two companies, further expanding its branch portfolio.

Andy Williamson, group managing director of IKO PLC.

IKO PLC has completed its acquisition of Pure Asphalt Company, in Bolton, Lancashire, following regulatory clearance. The business is now being fully integrated into IKO.

Four Ashes Plumbing Supplies has joined the IPG, bringing the total number of members up to 129. The IPG works closely with its broad network of suppliers to negotiate deals, which ensure lower prices, lower minimum orders, group offers and improved terms for merchants.

Allan Orr, a sales coordinator at SIG Interiors in Glasgow, has recently become the first person to receive a diploma in British Gypsum Products and Systems Knowledge after completing both British Gypsum’s e-Learning for Resellers and the Pure Practical course with a score of 100%.

Naylor Industries plc, a Barnsley-based manufacturer of construction products, has pledged its commitment to a new venture to help Barnsley's youth become better learners and better workers of the future.

The Sutton branch of Champion Timber, one of the South East's leading timber suppliers, has once again invested in its local football team, Sutton United. The company is sponsoring the team's white and red away kit for the new 2016/2017 season.

The chief executive of trade-only builders' merchant Selco Builders Warehouse has revealed it will have more than 50 branches across the UK by the middle of next year.

Independent Welsh builders' merchant LBS has seen sales of SterlingOSB increase as a direct result of Norbord's recent promotional campaign.

PlumbStock, the dedicated heating and plumbing brand created by the Ridgeon Group, continues to expand its offering with the launch of a new standalone trade counter in Luton, Bedfordshire.

Every two years, construction materials manufacturer Naylor Industries holds a Safety, Health, Energy and Environment (SHEE) Day, with training sessions on topics as diverse as manual handling and fire prevention and aimed at spreading best practice across the Naylor group.

John Nicholls has strengthened its position as a leading independent builders' and plumbers' merchants in Oxfordshire and Warwickshire by opening its first supersite.

Specialist supplier Direct Heating Spares (DHS) is investing in a new Chorley-based head office and small parts pick warehouse to expand its stockholding and enhance availability to installers.

Tarmac's building products division has announced that it is to boost manufacturing of Durox aerated blocks by reopening the second of its two existing factories at Linford, Essex, due to open in late 2017.

Howarth Timber and Building Supplies reports huge numbers of people registering for the merchant’s trade day at Elland Road on 24 November.

The h&b buying group reported strong individual results at its largest ever annual supplier event last week.

Architects, specifiers, building contractors, clients and their architectural ironmongery advisers and suppliers across the world can nominate projects for the 2016/17 Architectural Ironmongery Specification Awards from now until 28 October.

New research has revealed that commercial buildings are more likely to be breaking fire door safety regulations and putting people at risk.

Covers Timber and Builders Merchants in Chichester celebrated the launch of its renewed timber mill on 16 September.

Steve Willis Training has been celebrating the tenth anniversary of its Portchester Training Centre in Hampshire with a Worcester boiler cake.

Over 1,500 installers across the UK and Ireland have already signed up to the Keylite Switched2 Reward’s promotion, and due to popular demand, Keylite has extended the promotion until 31 December.

For the seventh consecutive year, Worcester, Bosch Group, has come out top in the Which? boiler report having achieved Which? Best Buy status across every boiler it makes.

Jewson has joined up with On the Tools as the headline partner of its inaugural awards.

Wolseley UK has announced a major transformation programme for its plumbing and heating business, which the company said is likely to result in 80 branch closures and up to 800 redundancies.

Construction material manufacturer Naylor has moved to a new head office at Wombwell‎, near Barnsley.

Chandlers Building Supplies' customers are being urged to down tools and get puzzling to help raise funds for a new therapy farm to support children with disabilities across the UK.

Shane Knight, category director for heating at F & P, Primaflow & Connections.

One year on from the introduction of the EU Energy related Product (ErP) directive, the heating industry has made significant progress in meeting goals – in terms of existing and new technologies.

SCA Timber Supply UK has announced that it has acquired Swedscot Timber, a timber distribution business in Cumbernauld Scotland, for an undisclosed sum.

Runners from CRASH Patron companies joined the thousands of athletes of all abilities to take on the 34th Windsor Half Marathon on 25 September.

The construction sector is being urged to create more apprenticeships and find ways to attract workers to the sector after new research found that over half of the UK population are struggling to hire a tradesperson.

Mayor Sarfaz Anjum opens the Kent Blaxill Saffron Walden branch.

Saffron Walden Mayor Sarfaz Anjum officially opened a new decorating centre for Kent Blaxill on the Saffron Walden Shire Hill industrial estate on September 22.

Following the successful launch of its newly updated HiB Novum furniture collection, HiB has opened its doors to its very first showroom – enabling customers to experience the innovation behind each design first hand.

Encon Insulation appreciates how difficult it can be for independent builders’ merchants to compete with larger national chains. That’s why the business has introduced a dedicated and experienced merchant team as part of an ongoing commitment to become the “distributor of choice” for independent merchants.

On 12 October, Frank Howard Tools and Fixings is hosting the Festool Roadshow 2016 at its Braintree branch. The Festool tour truck, packed with products, will then be travelling across Europe, bringing the latest products to its customers.

JG Speedfit has been awarded membership of the Builders Merchants Federation (BMF). Membership of the BMF entitles associates to a number of benefits including access to relevant industry reports, advice on how to maximise profitability and free legal guidance.

After reporting steady growth in sales via its online shop in the last few years, and record months in the first half of 2016, Parker Building Supplies has announced a refurbishment of its online store.

The Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) now has more companies in its membership than at any time in the last 20 years.

Knauf Insulation has been awarded the inaugural Peter Buttle Trophy by h&b Group for Supplier of the Year. The award recognises excellence of merchant suppliers, and was presented by Nick Lander, managing director of h&b, and Peter Buttle, chairman of h&b.

A new survey by Worcester, Bosch Group has revealed worrying statistics around the habits of homeowners and their heating systems.

Merchant partners of National Buying Group (NBG) continue to demonstrate strong and continued growth, with new branch openings and expansion into new business areas. Three independent merchant partners – PGR, Beers and TG – have contributed recently to significant development in the sector in their own localities across the UK.

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