Message from our CEO

As we enter the new year, I wanted to express our thanks for your continued support. We endeavour to provide your team with the kind of expertise and added value that helps your business grow and manage risks.

In 2018, we continued to see rapid growth in the liquid waterproofing industry. Liquids are being specified on a much wider scale than ever before for applications ranging from flat roofs and balconies through to bridges and car parks in both the new build and refurbishment sectors. We have evolved in response to this growth, appointing two more board directors and strengthening our technical focus. Broadening our skills and developing our technical expertise is going to be vital in 2019 and beyond as the construction industry is facing many challenges.

In addition to the uncertainty that still surrounds Brexit and the potential impact of a ‘no deal’, the Grenfell tragedy is likely to change legislation.

The Hackitt report makes 53 recommendations, including several relating directly to construction products. Construction professionals and industry leaders have overwhelmingly accepted these which has led to the 100% initiative. Launched by the Local Authority Building Control (LABC) and the British Board of Agrément (BBA), this is calling for full adoption of the recommendations and signals the beginning of significant change in 2019.

LRWA working in partnership with SPRA, have been elected onto the Industry Response Working Group 12 (Products) by the Construction Products Association (CPA) to represent the flat roofing industry. As an association, and in line with the Hackitt report, we will be working with members, to ensure that you have a voice and can influence the work needed to make sure that specified products are applied to the building. Specification breaking and value engineering will become harder as product substitution could affect product system performance.

Manufacturer and Associate members will also need to tread carefully when marketing their products as a new ‘Marketing Integrity group’ is looking at product claims and developing a common language for specifiers that is clear, accurate and verified. We are represented in this group and will be able to provide feedback as work progresses.

Competence will be another key theme for this year as a result of the Hackitt report, which will put the spotlight on areas including roofing design, testing, materials, installation and maintenance. Although the roofing industry is already leading the way in terms of competence, the need for training will remain a priority in 2019. We are working with the NFRC to develop the knowledge test and training required for the liquid discipline to enable an applicator to become ‘RoofCert’ accredited. We aim to ensure that our sector continues to raise standards and deliver the highest quality projects.

We believe that it is more important than ever before that the industry works together to influence and build a sustainable future for our sector. On behalf of the team, we’re grateful for the support from you and your colleagues and look forward to working closely with you.

Sarah Spink – CEO Liquid Roofing & Waterproofing Association