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SPARKS UK Electrical Apprentice of the Year announced

£1500 of Schneider Electric equipment for Farnborough College
4th June 2018 – Congratulations to Matt Taylor from Farnborough College, who was crowned the SPARKS UK Electrical Apprentice of the Year for 2018. As the winner of the competition, Matt received £1,500 of Schneider Electric equipment for both him and his college. Congratulations also go to Luc Mathlin from DCET in Exeter, who came a close second, receiving £500 worth of equipment for him and his college.
Launched in 2010 by SNG Publishing, the competition gives students the opportunity to be recognised for their hard work and skills. The competition brings together lecturers, employers, industry leaders and manufacturers to support the next generation of electricians and encourage them in their career development. The 2018 competition was entered by 71 apprentices keen to show off their skills.
Following the regional heats held across England, Wales and Northern Ireland to assess students on both practical and technical merits, Matt and the other finalists were invited to 3M’s Customer Innovation Centre to compete for the title.
Matt reached the final after finishing first in the South East regional heat. To win the competition, he had to complete the toughest test featured to date. This involved wiring, conduit bends, a consumer unit, switches, and bulbs, which were all live tested at the end of day two. As the competition’s Platinum Sponsor, Schneider Electric donated all of the materials for the competition bays.
Schneider Electric was proud to be the Platinum Sponsor for the second year running, and to support all of the students on their journey through the competition and beyond.
On finishing first in the competition, Matt said “I’m ecstatic – I just didn’t see myself winning. I entered to give myself a challenge and I’ve definitely achieved that. The other competitors were great and what I’ll take away from this is the knowledge that I can do something that I thought I couldn’t”.
Jocelyn Golding, Electrician Channel Programme Manager at Schneider Electric, said, “We are delighted to have the opportunity once again to recognise and reward the talent among young electricians, and support students on their journey.”


Keeping compliant across the UK: Some differences in environmental legislation

By Simon Knott, Managing Director of environmental consultancy Naturally Compliant
In comparison with many other parts of the world, the UK has a commendable record of protecting the environment from damage and for working constructively with engineers and contractors to mitigate the effects of necessary operations.
The relevant legislation is by its nature complex, and busy construction professionals engaged in engineering activities need to be up to speed with what they can and cannot do while remaining compliant with the regulations.
The picture is complicated by the fact that, since devolution of powers to the nations of the UK – a process which has accelerated in recent years – there are significant differences of approach between England and Wales and Scotland.
This article, which is for the purpose of information only and does not constitute legal advice, attempts to illustrate some of the main differences between the countries and to remove potential confusion over definition and context.
In Scotland, working on or near water is covered by the Water Environment (Controlled Activities) (Scotland) Regulations 2011 (as amended) while on the rest of the UK mainland the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2016 pertain.
In England and Wales, for engineering purposes, works on or near a main river will be completed under an exemption, a standard rule permit or bespoke permit. The Environment Agency has clearly defined what a main river is, through issuing an official map to make the information accessible.
However; any engineering works that has the potential to obstruct flow in an ordinary water course, requires consent from a flood defence consenting authority. An ordinary water course is defined as every river, stream, ditch, drain, sluice, sewer (other than a public sewer) and passage through which water flows and which does not form part of a main river.
In Scotland, work on any surface water on a 1:50,000 scale map requires either registration, a simple licence or a complex licence.
If the water in question, however, is not on a 1:50,000 scale map – for example a small burn which needs to be bridged – contractors do not need to contact the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA). But they do still have to follow the General Binding Rules for their activity or they may be deemed non-compliant.
The Scottish system is in some ways preferable, since everyone is working to the same guide-book. In England, contractors have to contact the Environment Agency or the flood defence consenting authority – usually the council – and interpretations of the regulations by individual council officers can vary.
There are differences, too, in the wording of the regulations regarding pollution. Scotland and the Controlled Activities Regulations refers to a pollution control regime where activities are controlled by General Binding Rules, Registrations, Simple Licences and Complex Licences. Importantly, this applies to the whole water environment and unlike some engineering activities, authorisations may be required for discharges to a receiving body not on a 1:50,000 scale map.
In England and Wales the Environmental Permitting Regulations are again relevant however your activity may be authorised by a Regulatory Position Statement, an Exemption, a Standard Rules Permit or a Bespoke Permit. However, the receiving body is defined as surface waters, e.g. rivers, streams, estuaries, lakes, canals, coastal waters, or on to or into the ground.
In regard to protected species, the Wildlife and Countryside Act covers the whole of the UK. However, through various acts, it is implemented differently. One of the major differences is that the Scottish wording of the Act includes often “Recklessly”, for example:
“Subject to the provisions of this Part, if any person intentionally or recklessly
1.    kills, injures or takes any wild bird;
2.    takes, damages, destroys or otherwise interferes with the nest of any wild bird while that nest is in use or being built”
Meaning that an offence is committed if harm is done – whether or not there was prior intent to harm.
In both cases, the legislation is well-intentioned and should be embraced by responsible professionals in the construction sector for whom best practice should in any case be second nature.
However, a breach of the regulations – even if unintentional – can have ramifications for companies far beyond the penalties imposed by the regulatory agencies. In our environmentally aware and hyper-connected age, reputations built over years can be damaged in a day.
No working contractor can know the ins and outs of all compliance requirements and that is why it is imperative to seek professional advice at the earliest stage in any proposed project, large or small.


Jaga Bolsters Expert Team With New MD And Sales Appointments

Jaga UK – one of the UK’s leading distributors of energy-efficient, fast response heating, cooling and ventilation solutions – has appointed Phil Mangnall as its new managing director and welcomed two new additions to its sales team.
Phil will draw on his depth of expertise in management, customer relations and business development to ensure the delivery of tailored energy-efficient solutions and strengthen Jaga’s position in the HVAC market.
Previously national sales manager for three years, Phil was responsible for leading Jaga’s sales team in providing great service from initial enquiry to final delivery, providing extensive guidance and support on projects in the education, residential care and commercial sectors. He was also an integral member of the management team.
With nearly thirty years’ experience in the HVAC sector, Phil was previously sales and marketing director at Docherty Group and defence export sales manager at Hale Hamilton. He spent just over 21 years at Powrmatic, first as general sales manager and then as group export sales manager where he worked closely with UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) to develop new opportunities in mainland Europe, the Middle East and China.
Commenting on his appointment, Phil Mangnall said, “Having been at the forefront of Jaga’s sales function for the past few years, I am incredibly passionate about the products and solutions that we offer.
“My aim is for Jaga to be the preferred choice for sustainable HVAC solutions and I’m delighted to be stepping up to the role of managing director where I can put fresh ideas into practice to achieve this aim.”
Jaga is also pleased to announce the growth of its sales division with two new appointments. Clare Swain joins as Northern Specification Sales Manager, whilst Joe Vincent assumes the role of Business Development Manager in London and the South East.
Clare is an experienced HVAC professional with more than 15 years’ experience in similar roles for companies such as Ruskin Air Management and Polypipe. Clare’s time will be dedicated to providing support to meet the needs of the specification market. This is in response to growing demand for Jaga products and solutions in design specifications for commercial buildings, schools and residential developments.
As Business Development Manager, Joe is responsible for advising customers on the best heating, cooling and ventilation solutions to meet their requirements. Previously, Joe held technical sales positions at other heating manufacturers such as Zehnder, where he gained a wealth of HVAC industry knowledge.
Phil Mangnall added: “A core aspect of our business is providing expert technical advice and consultancy to help find innovative and efficient solutions to complex heating and ventilation challenges. Therefore, we are continually investing in our sales teams to ensure we have the resources to provide the best possible service to our customers.
“I’d like to personally welcome Clare and Joe to the Jaga family and am looking forward to seeing what they bring to the business.

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