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NASC Issues Statement on BR Network (aka Project Hub)

NASC Issues Statement on BR Network (aka Project Hub)

By Robin James, NASC Managing Director

“A number of NASC full contracting members have reported to the confederation that they have been financially damaged by a company named BR Network which also uses the name Project Hub in its correspondence.

“BR Network offers, at point of sale, a good and interesting storyline. It indicates that it works for main contractors in trying to find reliable and reputable scaffolding companies, as the contractor it is working for needs to place orders for scaffolding contracts (a tempting offer for growing and established scaffolding companies).

“However, NASC members have reported that this scenario is actually far from the reality once the considerable fee to join BR Network has been paid.

“One member reported that they had received only one reasonable lead in the first three months. Upon complaining to BR Network that they were not supplying what had been discussed, they were then offered an enhanced service at an additional cost to put the complaint right and provide commercial leads for sub-contract scaffolding works.

“The member was then charged an extra cost to try and obtain what they thought they were getting in the first place, as BR Network provided the company with a further contract as a way of dealing with the complaint. When this second contract (and payment) also did not deliver what was originally offered, the NASC member company had no option but to terminate the contract.

“However, terminating the contract was not as straightforward as expected. Having given notice by recorded delivery, the stance of BR Network was to cancel the original contract, not all the contracts.

“At a later point a new invoice for immediate payment was issued by BR Network for the enhanced section of the contract. It transpired that this section of the contract had remained effective and had not been cancelled. The cycle of payment continued to be requested and enforced, with the same absence of leads for work being offered, hence another costly termination fee was demanded.

“NASC members are urged to be wary when dealing with companies such as BR Network and Project Hub. Although web-based Trustpilot has received a large number of complaints about the way this company operates, its practices and approaches to specialist construction-based companies continue, resulting in a time consuming and expensive cycle when terminating the contract.”

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Finalists Revealed for NASC 2018 Awards

Finalists Revealed for NASC 2018 Awards

The finalists for the NASC 2018 Awards – celebrating the very best scaffolding projects, processes, products and personnel – have been revealed.

A panel of judges, comprising main contractors and industry experts, scrutinised the 40+ entries submitted for the newly-expanded awards, to select a shortlist of just four finalists for each of the seven categories.

All shortlisted entries can be found here.

Robin James, NASC Managing Director, said: “We are delighted to reveal the finalists for this year’s NASC Awards, which once again shine a spotlight on the exceptional working practices and technical capabilities of our members.

“I’d like to thank each and every member that submitted an entry this year for taking part.  The judges were overwhelmed by the standard of submissions and had an extremely difficult task of whittling them down to just four finalists for each category.

“It’s clear from reading the diverse range of entries that our members are not only incredibly proud of the work they do but also how they go about it – ensuring projects are completed to the highest standards regardless of the scope or complexity of the task in hand.”

The winners will be revealed at the NASC Awards & Ball evening, taking place at the Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, Edinburgh on Friday 23 November.

All shortlisted entries will be showcased at the NASC AGM being held at the same venue earlier in the day.

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Scaffolder Training at NCC Centres – Business as Usual

Scaffolder Training at NCC Centres – Business as Usual

By David Mosley, CISRS Scheme Manager

“A number of scaffolding training-related rumours linked to the demise of the National Construction College (NCC) have been circulating in recent months, causing a degree of uncertainty in the industry.

“In the past few weeks alone contractors have called us saying “all NCC centres have closed”, “NCC is not taking bookings” and “there are no apprenticeship places”. None of these statements are true.

“I would like to reassure scaffolding contractors that it is very much business as usual at all five UK NCC centres.

“In terms of the broader picture, NCC announced earlier this year that it would withdraw from direct training delivery by 2020. This is still their intention, despite requests from the scaffolding fraternity not to follow this course of action.

“NCC will not withdraw from training until suitable alternative provision is in place. In the interim period, all centres are continuing to take bookings and to deliver CISRS training including apprenticeships.

“CITB is in discussion with several interested parties looking to take on scaffold training currently delivered at NCC East (Bircham), NCC Scotland (Inchinnan), NCC Midlands (Birmingham), NCC South (Erith) and NCC Waltham Forest (Leytonstone).

“Preferred providers have already been identified for the Waltham Forest centre and are looking to be in place January/February 2019. Information relating to the other facilities is expected from CITB by Summer 2019 with a full handover completed by 2020.

“As such, no NCC training capacity is expected to be lost.”

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CISRS Statement on WATA Announcement

CISRS Statement on WATA Announcement

By David Mosley, CISRS Scheme Manager

“CISRS has received confirmation that West Anglia Training Association (WATA) in East Anglia has ceased to trade. We are in contact with the appointed joint administrators Mctear, Williams and Wood about the possibility of retrieving VQ portfolios.

“We are not yet certain that anything can be recovered but we would ask anybody who has submitted a VQ portfolio or has not received course certification from WATA to contact us so we can compile a list of those affected. Please send delegate details to Laura Weekes.

“We have also received messages from some delegates who were shortly due to take a two-day CISRS CPD course at WATA. NCC East has kindly put on an additional course at their centre on 17/18th November.

“This course is being held initially for WATA customers. If any affected delegates would like more details, please contact NCC Coursebookers via 0344 9944433 or nationalconstruction.college@citb.co.uk.

“Administrators Mctear, Williams and Wood can be contacted on 0800 331 7417 or through their website here. For more information please visit the CISRS website here.”

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CISRS Launches System Scaffold Product Inspection Courses

CISRS Launches System Scaffold Product Inspection Courses

The Construction Industry Scaffolders Record Scheme (CISRS) has broadened its training offering through the addition of a range of System Scaffold Product Inspection courses.

In response to a growing use of systems scaffolding, CISRS has worked closely with a number of leading scaffolding manufacturers to create a standardised approach to systems training.

This has resulted in the launch of three one-day courses, covering Haki, Layher and Peri Up systems.

CISRS are very grateful for the input of the three companies involved to date and are confident that with a standardised approach to systems inspection now in place other manufacturers and suppliers will quickly get on board.

The System Scaffold Product Inspection courses include a theory test based on general inspection and specific system product knowledge as well as a practical exam based on a drawing of the structure and faults provided by the manufacturer / supplier.

Sean Pike, Managing Director of Layher UK Ltd and chair of the National Access and Scaffolding Confederation’s Hire, Sales and Manufacturing committee, said: “Layher welcomes the introduction of Systems Inspection training modules into the CISRS scheme, something we have been pushing for this for some time.

“While there has previously been ‘in-house’ manufacturer inspection training taking place, we are really pleased there is now a formalised route via the CISRS scheme for people to get their training recognised and endorsed onto their CISRS cards.”

The courses are open to anyone holding a CISRS Basic Scaffolding Inspection (BSI) or Advanced Scaffolding Inspection (ASI) card, or CISRS Scaffolders or Advanced Scaffolders that have had their card renewed with CPD and showing the Inspection endorsement.

In accordance with the criteria for SSPTS training, inspectors who have successfully completed a CISRS System Scaffold Product Inspection course are deemed competent to inspect a system product of a similar type, provided they are fully aware of the differences in the product specifications and have access to the current manufacturers user guide.

For more information visit www.cisrs.org.uk

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Swedish Scaffolding Association Given CISRS Training Centre Tour

Swedish Scaffolding Association Given CISRS Training Centre Tour

The NASC and CISRS arranged for more than 70 Swedish scaffolding industry professionals to gain a first-hand feel for scaffolding training in the UK during a visit to the National Construction College near Glasgow.

The overseas group – consisting members of the STIB, an association of Swedish scaffolding contractors – had travelled to Scotland for their AGM.

With the UK regarded as leaders in scaffolding training, STIB contacted the NASC to see whether they could take a trip to a CISRS approved training centre.

STIB members were given a tour of the centre, witness CISRS training taking place and received short presentations from CISRS Scheme Manager David Mosley on the goals and objectives of the NASC and CISRS and an overview of the UK scaffolding market from Haki Ltd’s Charles Stratford, Engineering Manager, and Steve Coshall, Sales Manager.

David Mosley said: “It was great to meet all the members of STIB, an association which we have developed positive working relationships with through our mutual membership of UEG, the representative body for scaffolding in Europe.

“I’d like to thank Alastair O’May, Head of the Access department at NCC Scotland for hosting the event.”

Hakan Carlsson, STIB Permanent Secretary, said: “Our members really enjoyed the tour. It was great to witness first-hand how scaffolding training is delivered in the UK. I’m sure our members have picked up more than a few ideas from CISRS in relation to scaffolding training which they can put into practice in Sweden.”