Business leaders from Crest Nicholson and the NHBC were given an insight into the rigorous and highly technical construction products testing carried out by the British Board of Agrément (BBA) during a visit to its test facility in Watford, Hertfordshire.
The visit gave both organisations a deeper insight in to how UKAS-accredited BBA tests products and systems for safety and quality before they are certified.
Housebuilder Crest Nicholson, which is completing new-build housing development Lancaster Grange in nearby Bricket Wood, was the first commercial contractor to be invited for a tour of the BBA’s hi-spec test facility. Its Technical Director David Robins said: “It has been a fantastic day for us. It’s a one-off experience to see what the BBA does.”
Crest Nicholson is currently installing insulation systems in the Lancaster Grange properties so showed particular interest in the BBA’s ETAG 004 hygrothermal chamber, which applies heat/rain and heat/cold cycling procedures to ensure thermal insulation materials are safe and fit-for-purpose.
The visitors also saw windows and doors tested for security and safety and the workings of the BBA’s new Instron machine, which tests materials for tensile strength, fatigue and structural durability. Overall the tour offered a deeper insight into the tests that products need to undertake before they are classed as ‘fit for purpose’ by the BBA.
“It’s been very reassuring to know that there are such advanced testing facilities here – testing all sorts of products and making sure they’re all fit for purpose – I think it’s fantastic,” said Paul Kearney, NHBC.
In return, Crest Nicholson invited BBA staff around Lancaster Grange to see foundation work and insulation systems at their earliest stages of planning and gain an insight into the varying phases of a major development.