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HPS sales are up 16.2% in the first half of 2013 (1 January to 30 June) against the same period in 2012. Encouragingly, excluding the new branches, the existing branches were up 8.8% in the same period.

A joint strategy named Construction 2025 was launched last week, setting out how industry and government will work together to put Britain at the forefront of global construction over the coming years.

SIG Roofing Supplies warns of rust-risk slates that are being badged and sold as T1 slate.

An increase in incorrectly marked, inferior slate coming into the UK market poses a worrying threat to merchants and contractors, SIG Roofing Supplies has warned.

Kitsons and GRM have been been re-launched as SIG Technical Insulation.

Two of the leading thermal insulation, industrial H&V and high temperature materials suppliers – SIG-owned Kitsons Thermal Supplies and GRM Distribution – have been officially re-launched as SIG Technical Insulation.

Hanson products are now all certified with the new mandatory Construction Products Regulation (CPR) CE mark.

The Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) has initiated a Trade Credit Enterprise Finance Guarantee Scheme, which will enable merchants to offer credit to trade customers that fall outside their normal risk profile, or have reached their credit limit.

Ridgeons, along with other employers in Cambridge, recently talked to students from six schools at two events arranged by the Cambridge Area 14-19 Partnership. The events were designed for students wanting to start work following their GCSEs.

Travis Perkins, Saint Gobain, Wolseley and Chandlers’ Building Supplies have joined a scheme to label products that help consumers identify the water efficiency of taps, showers and baths.

Small and medium-size builders have reported a rising workload for the first time since 2007, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB).

Grafton Group has withdrawn its proposed issue of Sterling Retail Bonds, blaming interest rate volatility and market uncertainty during the offer period.

The MKM Building Supplies team outside the company’s head office in Hull.

MKM Building Supplies has announced ambitious expansion plans ahead of the opening of its 40th branch.

As part of its Chandlers £50k Challenge, Chandlers Building Supplies, has launched an online silent auction to help reach its £50,000 target.

The new labelling will help customers identify the water efficiency of a range of bathroom fittings.

DIY retailers, builders’ merchants and manufacturers are to implement a voluntary labelling scheme, to help consumers identify the water efficiency of bathroom fittings such as taps, showers, WCs and baths.

Andrew Minson, executive director MPA - The Concrete Centre and Patrick Declerk, president of BIBM presenting the award to Martin Glynn, area sales manager Lafarge Tarmac Cement & Lime.

Lafarge Tarmac has scooped the British Precast Concrete Association's "Sustainability Champions 2013" award for the company's Automatic Tyre Inflation System (ATIS).

Mark Hoban MP, Minister of State for Employment today (4 July) signed a Partnership Agreement with the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) which pledges that both parties will do all they can to boost employment and training in the SME construction sector.

RenewableUK has welcomed new official government statistics published by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) showing that renewable electricity generation was 12.4 TWh in 2013 Q1, an increase of 10% on the same period the previous year.

Homeowners are losing confidence in British tradesmen, according to a warning from TrustMark, the government-endorsed quality mark for firms in the home repair, maintenance and improvement sector.

A Jackson delivery vehicle displaying the Woldmarsh Preferred Supplier badge.

Jackson Building Centres has been formally recognised by agricultural buying group Woldmarsh Producers as its preferred supplier.

Steve Ashmore, managing director of Wolseley UK.

Wolseley UK is creating two business areas – one specialising in above-ground drainage and the other in below-ground drainage – for the civils and utilities markets.

The CCF Belvedere team.

CCF has opened a new branch in Belvedere. Its extensive warehouse and trade counter supports a comprehensive product portfolio and offers excellent stock availability to meet demand from contractors in the south east London and Kent regeneration zone.

The Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) is to build on what has been widely acclaimed as the industry’s “best ever conference”, by developing initiatives which stem directly from two of the guest speakers’ presentations at the event in Portugal last month.

Jerry Studden, managing director of Alpha Heating Innovation.

Alpha Heating Innovation has recently responded to the take-up of boiler cashback under the Green Deal.

Knauf Insulation is ready for the Construction Products Regulation (CPR), which came fully into force yesterday (1 July), replacing the current Construction Products Directive. The CPR is valid within the European Economic Area (EEA).

As part of its drive to fully represent the merchant industry, the Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) has agreed its first buying group membership scheme with IBC.

Members of the Hull Kingston Rovers attended the trade store's launch.

Ideal Standard and PTS have joined forces and responded to customer demand to create an exciting new ‘trade store’ concept for plumbing and heating installers in Hull.

HSS Hire Services Group (HSS) has acquired UK Platforms (UKP), the powered access specialist, from the Haulotte Group.

Ashford Heating Supplies is the latest plumbing and heating specialist to join the National Buying Group (NBG).

MKM Building Supplies has signed a deal with The Cloud to offer customers free Wi-Fi across all of its 39 branches.

Dr Peter Hindle MBE, general delegate for Saint-Gobain in the UK, Ireland and South Africa, has undersigned a letter to all three of the main political parties setting out concerns with current retrofit policy and calling for action to address these issues.

Carlisle-based Tailored Heating Supplies plans to grow its sales team and IT infrastructure with £40k funding from Access to Finance.

From today (1 July) it is now mandatory for construction products to be tested against harmonised technical standards known as European product standards (hENs) or European Technical Assessments (ETAs).

Ford Motor Company has announced the introduction of its Ford Driving Skills for Life programme in the UK, as latest statistics confirm that road accidents remain one of the leading causes of death in young people.

B&Q’s store on Bleachcroft Way in Barnsley is set to close and be converted into a Sainsbury’s supermarket.

The Travis Perkins Group's planned £35m distribution centre in Warrington has been granted planning permission.

Neil Schofield: “Starving domestic RHI of vital cash effectively sounds the death knell for the scheme.”

The Chancellor of the Exchequer’s Comprehensive Spending Review has effectively cancelled the introduction of the domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), according to a leading heating industry figure.

The first official Green Deal (GD) figures have been released by the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) amid suggestions that the general public is failing to take up the funding options available.

There is scant encouragement for beleaguered construction small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the Comprehensive Spending Review, according to the Federation of Master Builders (FMB), which argues more needs to be done to support investment in low-carbon refurbishment.

Kirby Sebastian (KS Bathrooms) has expanded into Scotland and Ireland for the first time, following the appointment of two new distributors.

Shower and taps company Bristan has triumphed at the annual Cemco Lightside Supplier of the Year awards, winning both Bathroom Supplier of the Year and overall Supplier of the Year.

Financial assistance for first-time homebuyers is likely to prompt a resurgence of DIY spending after several years of decline, Kingfisher's chief executive Ian Cheshire has said.

David Hebdon presenting the award to Colin Willis, key account manager at Baxi.

Baxi has been crowned Heating Supplier of the Year for a second time at the Cemco supplier awards.

SIG has acquired SK Sales, a UK supplier of specialist air-handling products.

Grafton Group hopes to raise at least £50m by offering bonds directly to retail investors. Chief executive Gavin Slark said the firm aims to diversify its funding and extend the maturity of its debts. Investec is managing the issue.

Take-up figures for the Birmingham Green Deal programme show that out of 680 house assessments, only one home signed up to a Green Deal plan.

The Jewson Tools website is now available in a mobile friendly format for iPhone, iPad and Android devices.

Jewson customers have been quick to take advantage of the recently launched Jewson Tools website (www.jewsontools.co.uk), which is now mobile friendly for iPhone, iPad and Android devices.

The Guild of Architectural Ironmongers (GAI) is launching a new development in its education programme: a new Foundation Module in Hardware.

Jackson Building Centres has launched a ‘Jackson Renewables’ app for the iPad.

The GPH team will run this year's Race for Life in aid of Cancer Research UK.

A group of female employees at a local builders’ merchant are swapping their safety shoes for running trainers in aid of charity this month.

Left to right: John Brett, Allen Biggar, James FitzGerald and Alistair Biggar.

After only four years of trading, buying group IBC is celebrating Builder Store becoming its 150th member.

Communities minister Don Foster recently announced that £91m is to be spent in England to refurbish and bring back into use 6,000 empty and derelict houses and commercial premises.

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