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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
28th January 2021


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I thought when I read about the recent ruling that tradespeople working for Pimlico Plumbers are not to be classed as self-employed, that the decision would have far wider-reaching implications for our industry, and indeed it seems I was right. Hermes has also been in Court over similar issues and of course now the precedent's been set, that outcome was really a forgone conclusion, wasn't it?

I expect these to be the first of many cases that will change the way we work. Over decades of owning 'falling-down' property I've realised how often tradespeople uncover problems they couldn't have been expected to see before starting the job. As a result, I'm aware that when these cans of worms have been opened up, the likelihood of the tradesperson having all the parts required to deal with the newly-discovered issue/s are low. Thus, these people have to rely on parts being delivered later that day or overnight by courier, to avoid holding up the job. And of course, when it comes to the trade, busy professionals will have to work silly hours to prevent any downtime from having a knock-on effect on the work they have lined up for the rest of the week.

I think it will take a little while for things to settle down again and am wondering whether tradespeople are going to consider it necessary to expand the stocks of spare parts they keep in their vans, in an attempt to cover almost every eventuality, and also what effect this may have on future insurance premiums.

Moving on, please accept my apologies for the late arrival of this issue of KBzine. Suffice it to say, you can't always rely on the Internet - particularly when housing developers are afoot and are not being too careful about where they're digging...

Finally, the Bathroom Manufacturers Association tells us it's soon to share the results of its recent consumer research into how people use their bathrooms. Whilst waiting for my Internet to click back in (Spotify's a great aid, as the music starts again when it picks up the connection) I asked my elderly neighbours what they'd like to see in their bathroom, which isn't currently available. "A wipe-clean magazine rack or book rest," mused the lady of the household, while her husband suggested a voice-controlled crossword problem-solving device. Any takers?




Jan Hobbs



25th June 2018

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