PCA Weekly News - 29th February 2020

In your weekly PCA update this week:

  • ‘Paula’s Papers’ – Types & Sources of Salts
  • Floods: Damaging to life, property – and the environment?
  • Trustmark’s Finance Option for Registered Businesses
  • Ground Gas Protection Course Update
  • A Review of ‘Retrofitting for Flood Resilience’
  • Taking our training ‘Countrywide’
  • Acting on the changes to the Housing Act
  • Waterproofing Apprenticeship – not too late to sign up!
  • In the News

‘Paula’s Papers’ – Types & Sources of Salts!

We’re very pleased to share with members Paula’s first paper on ‘Types and Sources of Salts’, which forms part of series that she will be writing over the coming weeks. Read the complete series and gain 2 CPD points!

This is a complex topic that can be confusing and lead to misinterpretation, but Paula aims to bring together a much greater volume of published research which can be turned to practical use for members and clarify some basic concepts of salts in porous materials.

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Floods: Damaging to life, property – and the environment?

We are seeing a huge amount of coverage on TV, across social media and in newspapers about the floods up and down the country and the devastating impact this is having on people, their lives and their property. But what about the environment?

There is mention of the impact of floods on wildlife, but little or no comment of the enormous impact on the spread of invasive non-native species! This might seem a bit ‘niche’ but is something that needs to be considered seriously, according to PCA’s Peter Fitzsimons….

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Trustmark’s Finance Option for Registered Businesses

Steve Hodgson was invited by Trustmark (TM) to a meeting last week regarding the launch of two new financing options. They were created, primarily, to assist private homeowners raise funds for retrofit insulation and other energy saving measures, however it now transpires these could be extended to areas covered by TM scheme operators/registered businesses.

For us to determine if this will be relevant and of value to our members, we need to hear YOUR views. To find out more, click on the button below or contact Steve on steve@property-care.org.

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Ground Gas Protection Course Update

Now is the time to get your applications in for the new Ground Gas Protection in Buildings course!

We’re delighted to share with members the progress with the launch on the new Ground Gas course. A review meeting was held earlier this week with lively and dynamic discussion, ideas and suggestions in support of the forthcoming launch. It’s also great to see applications coming in for membership from Contractors, Manufacturers and Verifiers. Work continues on the launch of this new sector including webpages, an industry Code of Practice and supporting Technical Notes.

To stay up to date with developments, contact Jade on jade@property-care.org. For all PCA members who are interested in joining the sector, please contact Sue Uttridge: sue@property-care.org.

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A Review of ‘Retrofitting for Flood Resilience’

From time to time we find a book that we think deserves a mention and after taking receipt of Ed Barsley’s extremely well composed and beautifully set out edition, this is one of those times.

Retrofitting for Flood Resilience: A Guide to Building & Community Design by Edward Barsley is highly technical and extremely informative whilst at the same time, is set out in an extremely accessible and digestible format. The illustrations, photographs and sections are good enough to grace even the most discerning of posh coffee tables, while the attention to detail and depth of coverage would be hard to replicate in the most technical manual.

With well over 300 pages of informative text and graphics, it charts the challenge of flooding in some detail. The reader then sees rounded and well considered accounts of the possible solutions that may be adopted. With sections on flood risk, catchment management, engineering and building level strategies this book is insightful, informative and easy to digest.

The book also features a case study on the BRE flood house in Watford and shows several nice photos of work undertaken by a number of PCA members. As a book about this highly topical subject it’s brilliant, but don’t expect a ‘how to guide’ or a Code of Practice. The PCA has a copy that will be in the bookcase behind Steve’s desk if members are at the office and want to take a look through. If you do have an interest in the subject, or you want a very good book for your office, it’s not a bad thing to own for about £35.

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Taking our training ‘Countrywide’

Wednesday saw PCA’s Technical Manager James Berry provide a short training session on damp and timber defects for Countrywide surveyors, at their offices in Milton Keynes. This training session further cements the relationship we have built with Countrywide, following the launch of a dual branded PCA/Countrywide micro-website for their Homefact brand – a huge success which looks set for big things in 2020.

Countrywide is the UK’s largest property services group and undertake over 350,000 surveys a year and we are delighted to work alongside such a prestigious surveying house, ensuring that PCA members are their ‘go to specialists’ for damp issues in buildings.

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Acting on the changes to the Housing Act

The introduction of the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act 2018 has led to a significant number of enquiries from housing associations as the spotlight is firmly cast on dampness in tenanted buildings. Local authorities are worried about these changes and are seeking help to gain a better understanding of moisture-related defects within buildings.

In response to this, your Association has developed a one-day workshop aimed at those working with local authority and social housing environments. This training validates what YOU can do for housing associations and local authorities when works are required.

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Waterproofing Apprenticeship – not too late to sign up!

We’re here to help you invest in your team, so why not be inspired with an apprenticeship and get them qualified with a Level II Structural Waterproofing Below Ground NVQ? There is still time to sign up to the Structural Waterproofing Apprenticeship – get in touch with Jade for more information:

  • March 2020 – Tues 10th to Fri 13th
  • October 2020 – Tues 20th to Fri 23th

Your Association is taking steps to help address the skills shortage and our Specialist Apprenticeship Programme is one way to help you invest in your workforce. Contact Jade on 01480 400000 or jade@property-care.org for more information.

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In the News

In the news this week:

Specification Magazine and 24 Housing have covered the Cavity Wall training programme.

Our press release ‘Trade body launches workshop to ensure housing associations meet new legal requirements’ (featured earlier in this email) has seen the first coverage from 24 Housing.


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