TTA launches new slip testing facility for tiles

TTA launches new slip testing facility for tiles

The Tile Association is providing a new Pendulum slip resistance testing facility for tiles at its Stone, Staffordshire, head office.

Slip resistance is an important issue for all aspects of the floorcoverings industry. Slipping is the single most common cause of injury in the UK, comprising 40 per cent of all injuries and costing the NHS £133 million in terms of bed days each year.

Floor tiles are not inherently slippery when clean and dry, but the slip resistance of any type of floor covering can significantly reduce if it becomes contaminated by any form of lubricant, such as water or dust, depending upon the floor’s surface texture and footwear used.

Following work by a specialist Working Group of the TTA’s Technical Committee, the Association updated a Technical Document last year entitled Slip Resistance of Hard Flooring. Along with other TTA Technical Publications, this has recently been approved by RIBA for CPD purposes.

This new facility will be available for use by TTA members, mainly importers, distributors and retailers, and will use the Pendulum test method, which is the only slip resistance test used by the HSE.

Testing is available to TTA members and only costs £120 + VAT per tile. It will provide members with an independent, indicative test.  For more information please contact the TTA on 0300 365 8453.

TTA membership brings many benefits to members
The Tile Association is promoting the direct benefits that TTA membership brings to all its members.

Independent fixers and tiling contractors are eligible to apply for their Registered Tile Fixer Card. This provides peace of mind for customers, who will know that they are dealing with an approved and trusted tile fixer. The Card is supplied free of charge as part of TTA membership.

All members get a free listing in the business directory section of the TTA website, to include up to five images (including your logo). This gets tens of thousands of views each month and helps to generate leads for members’ business.

Members can also access the TTA Technical Inspection Service at a discounted rate. One of the TTA’s highly experienced Technical Inspectors can visit a site (domestic or commercial) to inspect any tiling job.

They assess the job against relevant British and European Standards and provide a detailed written document of the inspection with their findings and conclusion. This report can be used in court as evidence and expert witness – should any dispute go to that level.

The full range of RIBA CPD-approved Technical Publications is available for download free of charge from the TTA website, and the technical helpline is also available free of charge to members.

The topics covered by the TTA’s technical documents cover a large range of subjects and are grouped into five key categories within the architects’ area of the TTA website.

The publication groupings are: Ceramic Tiling on to Boards and Sheets; Ceramic Tiling onto Screed Systems; Internal Ceramic Tiling; Slip Resistance of Ceramic Tiling; Tiling of Wet Rooms and Cleaning & Maintenance of Ceramic Tiling.

In addition, all TTA members receive a free annual subscription to the leading industry magazines Tile & Stone Journal and Contract Flooring Journal.

Members also receive the Tilezine e-newsletter, content from which is stored online at www.tilezine.co.uk.

Very attractive insurance deals are also on offer from Jelf, the TTA’s insurance partner, and members are able to get £50 cashback if they take out public liability insurance with Jelf.
Free business advice is also available on tax, HR, legal and other areas.

The TTA can also offer meeting facilities for members at its Staffordshire headquarters. A meeting room, seating up to six people, is free for members to use for up to four hours.
There are also larger meeting rooms and a training room, both of which are available at discounted rates.

Entries sought for TTA Awards 2018
The TTA is encouraging companies and individuals in the industry to start considering their entries for the TTA Awards 2018, which are to be held on the evening of Friday 18 May at The St John’s Hotel, Solihull.
It is the quality of the entries that make the event what it has become today. For many companies in the industry The TTA Awards have become a key part of their annual marketing activities, while for individual fixers, an Award can be a very valuable boost for their careers.

This year will see enhanced sponsorship packages available, which will add value for sponsors and improve the attractiveness of sponsoring the event.

In addition to the standard packages, the TTA is working on a number of bespoke packages, to meet the specific needs of sponsors.

Gold Sponsors will benefit from two innovations planned for the coming year. For the first time there is to be a Technical Expo - and complimentary Expo stand space is included as part of this year’s Gold Sponsorship package. To participate, exhibitors will need to feature on their stand a special offer which is available to attendees.

In addition to the Expo, the TTA will also be holding a CPD seminar programme on the day of the Awards. Gold sponsors will have the opportunity to present one seminar on a subject of their choice between 10am and 4pm on Friday 18th. Refreshments will be available at both the Technical Expo and the CPD seminar programme.

Following on from the CPD seminars, the TTA AGM will be held at 5pm in the St Johns Hotel. All members are encouraged to attend.

The full list of Award categories, some of which are again due to be judged by public vote, is as follows:

  • Outstanding Contribution/Lifetime Achievement (Awarded by TTA Board)
  • Excellence in Marketing
  • Best Innovation
  • Best E-commerce Website - Public vote
  • Best Domestic Project - Public vote
  • Wall Tile of the Year - Public vote
  • Floor Tile of the Year - Public vote
  • Best Environmental Initiative
  • Excellence in Supply
  • Excellence in Retail
  • Employee of the Year
  • Excellence in Tile Contracting
  • Trainee Tile Fixer of the Year
  • Tile Fixer of the Year - Public vote
  • Excellence in Customer Service
  • Best Small Commercial Project
  • Best Large Commercial Project
  • Best Heritage Project - Public vote

Entries to the TTA Awards will open in the autumn and close in January, but it is never too early to start thinking about your top projects, products and achievements which you would like to put forward for recognition in 2018.

For further information on Awards sponsorship or entering, please contact the TTA on 0300 365 8453 or by emailing awards@tile.org.uk.

WorldSkills preparations continue apace
The preparations are underway for the UK team to participate in the World Skills final in Abu Dhabi in October.

According to tutor, Paul Doran, the preparations include revisiting all the modules so far covered Wall A, Wall B and Floor C and shipping out all tools and equipment to the competition.

UK wall and floor tiling competitor Armondas Tamulis will attend the last Team UK WorldSkills preparation event.  Focusing on team building and fitness, this training runs alongside the technical training which Paul delivers. The members of Team UK follow the same training plan as Team GB for the Olympics and Armondas will work with Peter Bakare who represented the UK at London 2012 to focus on developing techniques that will help competitors cope with the pressures of competing in front of an audience of over 100,000 visitors.

The technical training will include one final pressure test, alongside the Plastering and Drywall UK competitor, under strict competition conditions.  On 10th October Armondas and the rest of Team UK will attend the official send-off at the Houses of Parliament at which the Minister of State for Apprenticeships will wish the Team good luck and Armondas will be presented with the official UK Enamel.

Schlüter-Systems are the main sponsor for the UK team and are providing them with all their workwear for the event. The company says: “All of us at Schlüter-Systems Ltd would like to wish Armondas Tamulis good luck for the WorldSkills final and credit to him and his tutor Paul Doran for the many hours spent over the past four years preparing both physically and mentally for the event.”

Meanwhile, according to Paul Doran, preparations are already underway for selection of next competitors for Kazan, Russia, in 2019.

SkillBuild sponsorship opportunities for members
The SkillBuild 2017 National Final will take place at the NEC on 16th to 18th November. SkillBuild, co-ordinated by the CITB, is the largest multi-trade competition in the UK for construction trainees and apprentices.

N&C are signed up as a sponsor, supplying materials for the Finals, but there are also other sponsorships available. These include the opportunity to sponsor prizes for Gold, Silver and Bronze and also to sponsor competitors’ toolbags.  For further information on the packages available, contact the TTA.

Last orders for The Tileman’s Lunch
The Tileman’s Lunch is to take place this year on 8th December at The Grazing Goat Restaurant in Marylebone, London W1. Bookings for this year’s event will be closing soon, so anyone interested, who has not yet secured a place, should not delay – please contact the TTA office to book tickets. This pre-Christmas gathering of TTA members is always popular, particularly when it is held in a top venue like The Grazing Goat. The restaurant website is: www.thegrazinggoat.co.uk.