Roofers see millions come, other see millions go

Weekly Industry Recap: week ending 28 Feb 2013:

Good news for one roofing firm this week as it’s awarded a £3m contract; bad news for another ordered to pay £21m in the wake of a roof  fire.

A roofing firm from Lincoln scored a major win recently, as it was awarded a lucrative contract to undertake wok at London’s Noorthumberland Park, the location of the new Tottenham Hotspur stadium. A new 12,000 square metre Sainsbury’s supermarket, just one small bit of Tottenham’s £400 million development that will feature a 6,700 square metre sales area and even more space for educational and commercial activities,  is getting roofing and cladding installed by KGM, a subsidiary of Lindum Group.

The roofing and cladding teams for KGM will be hard at work, soon to be helping to install Kingspan composite wall cladding, a Green Sedum blanket roof, Fatra single ply, and a Kalzip standing seam roof. On top of that, there will be a Project Management team fielded by KGM to make sure everything goes swimmingly, which comes as no surprise – with such a large contract, I’d be down there looking over shoulders myself if I had to!

KGM’s managing director, Mick Papworth, was pleased as punch that the roofing firm was awarded this very lucrative contract, considering it made up the lion’s share of the £4.4 million worth of orders it received last month – which broke all records. It’s going to be a tough act to follow, Mick, so congratulations – and don’t muck anything up!

Of course, not every roofer can end up £3 million richer; sometimes you end up on the wrong end of a lawsuit that sees you out massive amounts of cash. This is, unfortunately, just what happened to Central Roofing (New South Wales) Ltd, a roofing company based in Bridgend, after a West Midlands copper tube factory was devastated by a massive fire traced to faults in the roof.

Central had been working at a factory located in Bilston, busily undertaking a roof refurbishment contract for factory owner Mueller Europe, when their roof scaffold – and the combustible materials – caught fire because they were put too close to the factory’s roof-suspended heaters. The scaffolds were much too close to the scaffold floor’s upper surface, with the result being a massive fire.

And when I say massive I mean absolutely horrendous. In fact, the damages totaled more than £21 million, which Central was ordered to pay Mueller in a recent  lawsuit. The judge castigated Central, stating that no one ‘in their right mind’ would have positioned a scaffold loaded with combustible materials right next to a pair of giant, gas-powered radiant heaters.

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