News

Pimlico Plumbers wins Gary Smith employment tribunal

Charlie Mullins from Pimlico Plumbers

Pimlico Plumbers has won an Employment Tribunal, brought by former self-employed plumber Gary Smith, who believed he was entitled to holiday pay.

The tribunal, held in Croydon, concluded that this was not the case and rejected his claim. Pimlico is now considering reclaiming its tribunal costs from Mr Smith, which CEO Charlie Mullins, will donate to charity, as well as an option to sue for reputational damages.

The claim first arose eight years ago when Mr Smith sued Pimlico for employment rights, including back-dated holiday pay, despite being a self-employed plumbing contractor and signing a contract to that effect and earning more than £500,000 over three years from the company. 

Contract of self-employment upheld in boost for IR35 compliance

A plumber that has taken on self-employment fixing a radiator

Contract of self-employment upheld in boost for IR35 compliance.

Hudson Contract has welcomed the decision of an employment tribunal to dismiss “opportunistic” claims made by a self-employed heating surveyor.

The company said the judgment protects the important economic role of legitimate freelancers and preserves the ability of small and medium-sized businesses to access their specialist labour in a mutually beneficial way.

The claimant, Mrs W Lynch, was represented by Jacqueline McGuigan of TMP Solicitors, whose previous cases includes the successful Court of Appeal case against Pimlico Plumbers in 2017, which put a spotlight on the business model of the so-called “gig economy”.

Evolution of Plumbing

Evolution of Plumbing

Ever since ancient times there has been a need for plumbing. Excavating a deep well to extract water from an underground stream was one of the first examples. Water had to be transported in urns because pipework had not yet developed. The quest for providing growing towns with a convenient water supply began in earnest on the isle of Samos in 530 BC when Epaulinus, a Greek engineer constructed a tunnel with a length of 1.6km and a diameter of 2.4 metres to channel water from nearby mountains. In 300 BC the Egyptian city of Alexandria had a pumped, suction lift water supply that was primarily used for fire-fighting.

Gira UK shortlisted for two BKU Awards 2019

Mark Booth from Gira UK - GIRA shortlisted for two BKU Awards 2019

Gira, one of the world’s leading full-range suppliers of intelligent system solutions for building management is in the running for two more awards this 2019, shortlisted for ‘BEST BATHROOM ACCESSORY BRAND’ and ‘BEST KITCHEN COMPONENT BRAND’ BKU Awards.

The BKU awards launched in 2015 and in association with Bathroom & Kitchen Update Magazine, is designed to recognise the retailers, brands, people and services that make the Kbb industry great. 

Making it as a finalist in both the Bathroom and Kitchen Award categories, Gira UK has been shortlisted for the following BKU Awards 2019:

BEST BATHROOM ACCESSORY BRAND 

BEST KITCHEN COMPONENT BRAND 

Vogue (UK) win 'Best UK Heated Towel Rail Manufacturer’ 2019

Vogue (UK) win 'Best UK Heated Towel Rail Manufacturer’ 2019

The UK’s largest British designer and manufacturer of design radiators and towel warmers, Vogue (UK), kick start the new year with a WIN, securing a 2019 Home and Garden Award for ‘Best UK Heated Towel Rail Manufacturer’ 2019.

The 2019 Home & Garden Awards is dedicated to rewarding the very best companies that specialise in technical innovation, product design and service and make-up the UK’s construction and property sector. 

In affiliation with Build Magazine, the 2019 Home & Garden Awards recognise businesses that can make a house a home and include a cross-section of industry professionals: from creative minds in landscaping and interior design, through to carpenters and leading heating manufacturers.   

Construction SMEs Need Protection from Payment Abuse

Alan Wilson on Construction SMEs Payment Abuse

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the construction sector are falling victim to payment abuse and deserve better protection, a leading trade association has warned.

In its submission to the Scottish Government’s Economy, Energy and Fair Work Committee, which is undertaking an inquiry into the construction sector, SELECT took the opportunity to make the case that reform of the payment system should include provisions to ensure that retention monies are protected in trust.

Retentions are monies withheld from contractors by clients to ensure that all work is completed properly. The money is meant to be paid back in full once work is finished and confirmed compliant with industry standards.

Twyford launches new high performance shower valve range

Twyford launches new high performance shower valve range

Leading sanitaryware provider, Twyford, have launched a new range of thermostatically controlled shower valves. The high-performance Sola Thermostatic shower valves have TMV3 and WRAS approval, making them suitable for a range of commercial applications, including those in the healthcare sector.

With safety and innovation at the heart of the range, the shower valves distribute water at safe and stable temperatures. The valves also feature Antiscald Failsafe Technology – A rapid failsafe for protection against scalding or thermal shock in the event of water supply failure. 

Ariston Introduces Aures - A New Electric Instantaneous Water Heater

Ariston Introduces Aures - A New Electric Instantaneous Water Heater

Ariston has added the Aures Slim Multi to its portfolio of electric water heaters. Suitable for a wide range of applications, from bathrooms and kitchens to loft conversions and utility rooms, each compact unit can simultaneously supply multiple outlets – such as a sink and a shower – with instantaneous hot water. As a result, users no longer have to wait for the water to heat up. 

The Aures Slim Multi has an ‘A’ class ErP energy rating, making it the most efficient method of providing water at the point of use. Plus, each unit is also supplied with a two-year warranty as standard.

Apprenticeship starts tumble

Apprenticeship starts tumble

As the news breaks that apprenticeship starts are down by 26% - following the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy in April 2017 - its clear that currently, the Government is falling a long way short of its target of 3 million apprenticeship starts by 2020.

On paper, the Levy delivers good value. All businesses with a payroll over £3m per annum have to pay 0.5% of their wage bill towards funding apprenticeships, (employers get a £15,000 fixed annual allowance to offset against the levy payment). Once employers have registered for an apprenticeship service account, they can use that money, plus a 10% government contribution, on apprenticeships within their own organisation.