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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
9th May 2019


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Please note that you are viewing an archived issue of The KBzine.

International News

Wall-hung WCs made easy with striking glass casing Vitrus from VitrA

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VitrA has pioneered easy, fuss free installation for wall hung sanitaryware with its extensive range of in wall frames and has now taken another step forward with the introduction of Vitrus, an elegant glass casing-control panel combination that means wall-hung, or back to wall WCs can be retro fitted and new installations can be made without the need for a false wall.

Orsoni from Trend for beautiful mosaic surfaces

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As one of the world's leading producers of coloured glass mosaic, Venetian enamel, gold leaf tesserae and engineered stone surfaces, Trend Group works with today's most celebrated designers, architects and artists.

Award-winning artist Dror designs masterpiece tap for Franke

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Inspired by the ever-shifting lines of flowing water, Franke's new Maris Free tap created by award-winning contemporary artist Dror Benshetrit, is designed with sculptural characteristics featuring a tactile, twisted-effect neck and spout in distinctive Matt Black or SilkSteel PVD.

Bora Pure: Design on a whole new level, scaled down to the bare essentials

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With the tried-and-tested quality features of Bora products and already the winner of the German Design Council's Iconic Award 2019, Bora Pure presents itself as a compact system and an entry point into the world of Bora.

Be inspired by new kitchens from Keller

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Keller's new Kitchen Inspiration brochure for 2019 showcases a portfolio of high-quality kitchen schemes that will inspire customers and make kitchen planning a joy.

The brochure is packed with beautiful imagery of stylish kitchens and a focus on each model's detail such as handle trims and lacquer cabinetry, to show it off to its full advantage.

New Hotpoint fridge freezers offer extended freshness

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Hotpoint has launched a new range of Total No Frost fridge freezers that incorporate a variety of technologies to ensure long-lasting food freshness and minimal food waste.

TKC adds Dust Grey colour to its contemporary Lucente and Vivo+ ranges

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TKC has introduced Dust Grey as a stocked colour to two of its contemporary ranges, Lucente and Vivo+, in gloss and matt, tapping into the trends for grey tones and tactile finishes in the kitchen.

LochAnna Kitchens now available on Compusoft's Winner Design

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LochAnna Kitchens' collection of 17 kitchens, including the recently launched Form range, is now available to download for free on Winner Design kitchen planning software by Compusoft.

Welcome to the


Did you hear about the woman who went missing for two days last week, who had become trapped in a lift? As if that ordeal weren't bad enough, rumour has it that she had to drink her own urine as she was becoming dehydrated and she thought it might help. I know people who do that for health reasons but I just can't get my head around the idea somehow, trapped and dehydrated or not...

The reason I mention this is that the woman is a cleaner, & she's not the first cleaner - and won't be the last - I've heard about who's become trapped while working alone or moving from one part of the job to another. It occurred to me that the people at the sharp end of our industry - the thousands of kitchen and bathroom fitters and maintenance/repair specialists - are often isolated when they work.

After all, a sensible householder will choose to vacate at every opportunity, surely, over trying to function at home when there's hammering, drilling and the sound of electric tools cutting and grinding through wood and metal?

An installer's/repairer's work isn't easy - often it's carried out in enclosed spaces and many of the items being fitted/repaired will be heavy and of a size that makes manoeuvreing them for work before being dragged into place, somewhat difficult. Accidents will and do happen. If you're alone in a property and are conscious and close to your phone, you can make a call; but if not, how can you summon help? Is it just a case of waiting until you're missed in the hope that someone will get to you before it's too late? Just imagine lying on a cold (and possibly wet) floor with a slipped disc, dislocated shoulder or with your arm wedged and immovable under something heavy, like a washing machine...

I've written about lone worker tracking and monitoring systems in the past and was wondering whether anyone in our industry uses them for safety reasons, rather than just to keep tabs on the workforce to ensure they're actually working? For small or sole businesses, the expense would be too great, but how about those who are members of a trade association? Are there any schemes I wonder, whereby associations offer the possibility of tracking and monitoring members for the enhancement of worker safety?

If not, is it something you'd like to see put in place?


Jan Hobbs



This Week's News

Designing outside the triangle

* Designing-outside-triangle.jpgMark Elmore, general manager, design, at Fisher & Paykel, shares his views on design in the kitchen. Mark has been designing kitchen appliances for decades. He is particularly interested in the physical and architectural changes that have occurred, and in the sociological and psychological ways in which kitchens have changed over the years.

"The so-called kitchen triangle is now redundant. Gone are the days when work in the kitchen was seen as a chore to be done as efficiently as possible, usually by only one person. The kitchen has become our studio for creating and socialising - it's the social hub.

Saniflo launches Kinedo Kinespace shower enclosures

* MAIN-PIC-Kinespace.jpgThe new Kinedo Kinepsace range of elegant and discrete shower cubicles from Saniflo UK is designed to make fitting shower enclosures swift and easy, while delivering a high-quality product with a 10-year warranty.

Available in four sizes, the range features chrome profiles with some versions also available in statement black or 'on trend' copper.

Shine bright with gold mosaics

* gold-mosaics.jpgFrom Byzantine icons to mystical Buddhist temples, gold mosaics have been chosen for designs over centuries as gold is an incredibly strong, precious metal that is immune to oxidation and so provides both strength and long lasting beauty.

Orsoni, a Trend Group brand, which is a traditional Venetian producer of glass mosaics, gold mosaics and Venetian enamel, is encouraging the use of gold in today's modern world.

Traditional with a modern twist; Blanco's Faron sink

* Blanco-Faron-sink.jpgEver the pioneer for sink design, Blanco has created the Faron XL 6 S; a large sink with a Silgranit PuraDur finish which is perfect for bringing a modern country house style into the kitchen.

The Faron XL 6 S comprises a generous bowl with a draining board which features double grooves. The look is reminiscent of country-style panelling; the grooving in the seamless surface enables water to run off and the Silgranit PuraDur finish prevents stains.

New cool compact wine storage from Danby

* Danby-wine-storage.jpgRetailers looking for products to capitalise on the promise of a long hot Summer can now offer the new Danby 16 bottle wine cooler.

This bijou cabinet is the first of a comprehensive range of wine-cooling units coming on stream and available from distribution partner Exertis.

Growth continues at KBSA with four new members

* Growth-continues-at-KBSA.jpgThe Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association continues to grow its membership, with three more retailers and one foundation member joining this month.

The latest new retail members include Abbey Kitchens in Cheltenham, Ktchns in Rickmansworth and Red Kite Kitchens in Beaconsfield. The new foundation member, Handcrafted By Woodworks, (pictured) also manufactures its own bespoke furniture on site in Northampton.

InSinkErator announces combination tap and food waste disposer promotional offer

* INSINKERATOR-deal.jpgInSinkErator has launched a promotion for its kitchen retail customers on the 4N1 Touch tap and the Evolution 100 food waste disposer. The promotion runs until the 31st May 2019.

Working with InSinkErator distributor partners, the latest promotion enables InSinkErator kitchen retail customers to purchase the two promotional products at a discounted price, with the option to install or to use them in any way that supports the business. The special offer is designed to support kitchen specialists and ensure they have all the tools to effectively demonstrate and display the two products.

Striking concrete-style worktops from Königstone

* Koenigstone-concrete-colours.jpgIndustrial style finishes, such as concrete, remain popular at kitchen design shows and, with Königstone's new Concrete Collection of worktops, homeowners can easily bring this current trend into their homes.

The four shades in this range - Shell, Fossil, Sand and Clay - expand on the existing 24 colours from the König Quartz worktop portfolio.

LDL introduces new brand partner

* LDL-Simonswerk.jpgLDL tells us it is delighted to announce a brand partnership with Simonswerk UK. An internationally renowned company, Simonswerk has been producing high quality hinge systems for over half a century.

As a member of the Guild of Architectural Ironmongers, the company is dedicated to achieving the very highest quality attainable. From the high copper content of its brass, to the specially developed technology incorporated into its hinges, Simonswerk is committed to the pursuit of perfection in its work.

Panelstyle updates its Splashpanel PVC bathroom panelling range with eight new décors

* MAIN-PIC-Splashpanel-IDS.jpgPanelstyle has updated its Splashpanel PVC wall panelling range with eight new décors, supported by a 20-page colour Panelstyle brochure and a retailer display stand, responding to the popular trends for elegant marbles, industrial finishes and bold colours.

The new décors include classic White Marble Matt and White Marble Gloss; the textured looks of Weathered Stone, Metallic Concrete, Grey Concrete Matt and Grey Concrete Gloss; and vibrant decors of Blue Quartz (pictured) and Grey Quartz.

Phone fear affects over half of UK office workers (but clearly not the one pictured)

* Phone-fear.jpgThe results of a survey of UK office workers suggests that we are becoming increasingly anxious about answering the phone at work. Telephone answering service Face for Business, has uncovered staggering statistics on the degree of call anxiety exhibited by UK office workers.

Fear of making or taking calls, also known as 'Telephobia', is a real thing that's not just limited to fear of calling a loved one or ordering a pizza. Jill Isenstadt, interviewed by the BBC, is the vice president of coaching for Joyable and stated they have clients who are "held back in their careers" due to the thought of interacting with others over the phone - "For a lot of people, getting on the phone is a particularly complex interaction. You have to think of things on the fly and you have to respond to what someo

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Jan Hobbs
Publishing Editor
Email:[email protected]
Tel: +44 (0)1372 811 307 
Mobile: 07980 288 373





John Austen
Publishing Director
Email:[email protected]
Tel: +44 (0)1580 755 863
Mobile: 07766 707 888
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Recent News

BMA supports Water Saving Week with two consumer videos

The Bathroom Manufacturers Association is supporting Water Saving Week (29th April - 3rd May) by promoting two new videos, designed to help consumers think about how they use water and look for products with the Unified Water Label (UWL).

People ask friends, family, or Twitter for water saving advice, rather than their plumber

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Only 6% of Brits ask their plumber for water saving advice, with people more likely to ask friends and family (18%) or social media channels (13%) - with the majority (40%) seeking advice from their water company.

Grohe's XXL Truck Tour returns to the UK for its third year

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The Grohe XXL Truck Tour, a vast mobile showroom that has welcomed hundreds of thousands of visitors all over the globe, is returning to the UK for the third time with a jam-packed schedule that looks set to be its most successful yet.

Exciting plans in store for Moores and Roux Kitchens

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Moores and Michel Roux Jr. have announced big plans for the Roux Kitchen collection which include wider distribution to premium housebuilders and selected kitchen retailers, new colours in the collection and R&D into how it can further meet consumer needs.

KBSA 'Staying Ahead' conference is open for bookings

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 The 2019 Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association Conference, AGM and Awards Dinner is open for bookings and members are being encouraged to book early to secure a place.

Treasury claws back £300m+ from apprenticeship training at expense of small employers

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ast week it was announced that the Treasury took back over £300m of funds allocated to apprenticeships despite small employers being turned away. With 90% of employers in the furniture and interiors sector being non-levy payers, this means that excellent and often specialist training providers of essential skills are having their funding allocations cut to the extent that they can do little more for SME's than complete existing apprentices on their programmes.

Two new iF Design Awards for Unidrain Reframe Collection

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Unidrain tells us it is delighted with its two new iF Design Awards; for products from its Reframe Collection of bathroom accessories; the corner shelf and the toilet brush.

Union joins Crosswater's portfolio

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Crosswater's Union collection from has been engineered to provide unparalleled functionality and designed to make a statement. Presenting Italian artisan brassware craft at its finest, each piece is cast, precision machined, polished and perfected to offer an elevated bathing experience.

Smallbone and Mark Wilkinson make three milestone career awards

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Smallbone and Mark Wilkinson presented milestone career awards to three craftsmen that have together notched up 90 years' service at the Devizes workshop. Andrew Potter and Kevin Paget celebrated 25 years and Steve Webb was recognised for 40 years' service.

KBSA experts to meet consumers at Grand Designs

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The Kitchen, Bathroom & Bedroom Specialists Association has announced that it will have a number of retail members providing advice at Grand Designs, which takes place in London's ExCel 4th - 12th May.

Franke enlists help of award-winning culinary historian for its 2019 Blooming Great Tea Party

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Paying homage to Queen Victoria's 200th anniversary, Franke's 2019 Blooming Great Tea Party fundraiser for Marie Curie, held between 21st and 23rd June, will take on a royal theme this year with its exclusive Victoria Sponge cake recipe specially developed by Regula Ysewijn, an award-winning cookbook author and culinary historian with a love for Britain.

Euronics showcase a success

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Electrical buying group Combined Independents (Holdings), part of Euronics, hosted the Euronics Showcase at the NEC Birmingham this month after a three-year hiatus. It was a huge success.


Gary Nolan is promoted to regional sales manager, Blanco UK

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Blanco UK has promoted Gary Nolan from sales executive to regional sales manager.

Gary has worked for Blanco for seven years. His new role means he is responsible for developing effective sales strategies and focusing on customer satisfaction within the Kent and Essex areas.

New operations manager appointed for Kitchens International

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Scottish kitchen designer and retailer Kitchens International, has recently appointed a new operations manager. Francis Waite, in this new role, is responsible for overall warehouse management, vehicle fleet, tools and consumables, management checks and reports, CPD and training.


'Free Trade' with Euro Brochure by Vogue (UK)

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Vogue (UK) has launched Prelude by Vogue (UK) - a brochure aimed at those who live outside the UK.

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