KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
25th May 2020
We strongly recommend viewing KBzine full size in your web browser. Click our masthead above to visit our website version.
Inspired by his time living and working in Japan, Arik Levy worked closely with VitrA's in-house design team to create a bathroom collection that allows both mind and body to relax.
This appliance is incredibly energy efficient with an A+++ energy rating with an A for wash class and spin efficiency, too.
To return to the workplace or not? That is the question… but as one of the lucky ones who’s worked mainly from home for almost two decades, it’s not a dilemma I face. If it was, would I be happy about coming out of furlough or lockdown for work, when I can’t yet get together with my daughter – also self-isolating as vulnerable - or camp overnight at a distant beautyspot? No I wouldn’t. But if I worked for a company whose existence relied upon my presence… one that was struggling because of lockdown limitations, which I might just be able to save, with a little courage and a resigned commitment to the daily commute…? What then? Save my job and potentially endanger my family, or stay put & let down my company…? It’s a toughie, isn’t it?
According to a new survey by online training provider The Skills Network, the majority of people are concerned about returning to work. The survey quotes 56%. I'm surprised it's not higher.
One respondent - a furloughed retail worker for a non-essential business with stores across the country, (KBB-related I wonder?) said: "I'm worried that the business I work for is rushing to reopen. We haven't heard much from management on whether PPE will be provided or if social distancing will be adhered to. On top of this, I'm reliant on public transport to get to and from work. I don't want to go back to a daily routine just yet and even more so when I'm not comfortable mixing with co-workers and customers if there isn't going to be the necessary PPE."
Apparently, people's biggest concerns were: mixing with co-workers (49%), communicating face-to-face (32%), going back to a set routine (30%), commuting (30%), dealing with office politics (13%) and having to look presentable (9%).
Do employees have to return to the workplace? Kathleen Heycock, employment law solicitor at Farrer & Co, says employees are not obliged to work in an unsafe environment and that if an employer hasn't complied with the obligation to protect employees' health & safety, there will come a point when telling people to attend work is unlawful and unreasonable. The Employment Rights Act 1996 provides employees with protection from being dismissed or treated to their detriment as a result of their refusal to return to the workplace.
Interesting times ahead, eh?
This Week's News
As the UK Government unveils new guidelines for making workplaces 'Covid-secure', global health & safety expert Bureau Veritas is advising businesses that their safe return to work depends on their ability to "win the hearts & minds of employees" alongside creating clear policy, systems and processes with regular monitoring. The advice is, of course, useful wherever you may be in the world...
On 11th May, the Government published guidance for employers to help them get their businesses back up and running and workplaces operating safely following almost two months of strict Coronavirus restrictions. The new guidance covers eight workplace settings that are allowed to be open, from outdoor environments and construction sites through to factories and takeaways.
The Health & Safety Executive has reminded building occupiers, businesses and other duty holders restarting operations after the shutdown to review their water systems' maintenance arrangements to avoid creating a public health hazard from waterborne bacteria such as legionella.
Water stagnation, poor temperature control and increased levels of contamination may create a hazard in water systems that have been less frequently used than normal (such as dental or outpatient facilities) or where operation has been suspended (such as leisure, sports, swimming and spa pool facilities).
Utopia Bathrooms tells us it is delighted to have resumed manufacturing and deliveries and that its spacious showroom - dramatically updated to showcase the new products and colours scheduled for imminent launch - is now open to visitors strictly by appointment only. In accordance with current guidelines, the company is implementing rigid safety and social distancing procedures to safeguard both staff and visitors.
If you’re looking beyond lockdown and pondering how the interiors and design of our homes are going to change as a result of the Coronavirus crisis, then you’ve already probably considered the impact hygiene is going to have on how we interact with everyday items in our home.
Since the beginning of this year, Grohe has already seen unprecedented demand for its infrared touchless taps and ongoing enquiries and sales show this is a trend that is set to stay.
Crosswater is introducing a collection of 8mm shower enclosures into its premium bathroom range. The striking collection encompasses shower screen solutions, fittings and accessories, all designed to give customers the ultimate showering experience.
Combining modern design with superior functionality, the new Design 8, Svelte 8 and Infinity 8 collections provide a choice of exceptional designs that will suit any contemporary interior, fitting effortlessly into a range of bathroom configurations and lifestyle requirements.
“When deciding what sink type is best for a design scheme, it's best to start by considering the kitchen style, the worktop material, the profile of the homeowner/s and any constraints which may demand a certain installation method.
Specially designed to help the fight against Coronavirus, this new online resource is available to retail and commercial clients, giving its customers the opportunity to 'stay inspired' when face-to-face consultation is absent.
It's hard to believe that the great and the good of the KBB world was attending the KBB Show at the NEC just a couple of short months ago. Now, of course, the world is a different place and we're looking forward to the time when we can meet our sector colleagues again.
The show, despite what was around the corner, proved to be a great showcase for the kitchens and bathroom sectors including Kinedo, the shower brand of Saniflo.
One of the many benefits of specifying and designing a kitchen from Keller is the vast choice and flexibility within the portfolios. With a pedigree spanning 85 years, the company knows that individuality in the kitchen design is just as important as quality. This is why Keller prioritises both to create reliable, durable and beautiful kitchen schemes.
The Kitchen Bathroom Buying Group, has launched an initiative called 'Support our NHS'. In appreciation for the amazing work and sacrifice made by the NHS throughout the current crisis, the 'Support our NHS' initiative encourages KBBG members to offer a special 'thank you' discount to NHS workers on any purchase of kitchens, appliances and bathroom products.
Bill Miller, Managing Director, KBBG explains: "We have asked our suppliers to support our initiative by giving our members an additional discount for any order placed, up until 31st December 2020, for an NHS worker. This will allow our members to offer the NHS worker a significant discount on their order."
The KBzine Archive Search
We keep an extensive archive of news stories and product information that have featured in past issues of The KBzine. If you would like to run a search of the The KBzine web site using the search tool below please just go ahead by entering in the name of the person, product or company or any other key words that you are looking for.
How to contact us at The KBzine:
REQUEST THE KBZINE HERE
The KBzine is broadcast
every Friday. You may receive it FREE each week by
clicking the link above.