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Countdown - two months until Silverstone

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Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit hosts our inaugural double-header for the BARC Radical SR3 Trophy and Revolution UK Trophy on Saturday April 27th. It's time to start planning to get on the grid at one of the world's most famous circuits.

BARC Radical SR3 Trophy

We've had strong interest from Radical SR3 owners, and following consultation sessions with teams and drivers we have now finalised the technical and sporting regulations. We've also created an innovative two-tier entry fee structure for Radical SR3 Trophy competitors. The 'Premium All-Inclusive' package includes discounted hospitality, eligibility for the Sunoco 240 Challenge and B.R.M. Speed Award and personalised video content from the experts at The Big R social media agency. The 'Just Race' package gives a simple, no-frills option for drivers prioritising our generous track time over the premium promotional benefits.

Revolution UK Trophy

The Revolution has completed a successful 2000km endurance test in Portimao. Following on from UK testing through November and December, the Revolution development team relocated to southern Portugal ensuring the exhaustive, high-quality testing could continue throughout the worst of the winter months ahead of delivery to customers for the 2019 season.

“We brought a number of updates here following our UK testing, and all of them gave us more performance,” said test driver James Abbott (pictured below) after the test. “Portimao is a tough test for any car, particularly the high-speed stuff and the car performed brilliantly. It’s got the speed and just as importantly the balance and driveability we were after.”

Early Bird Discount Offers - save up to £620

There's a discounted offer to save up to £55 on your Silverstone double-header if you enter before February 26th. Full season entrants can also benefit from savings of up to £620 when committing to all the UK races with our March early entry offer.

Regulations, Cup brochure and entry forms can be found here: https://www.sportsprototypecup.com/documents

PR by Reeves PR and Pitbox91 in Birmingham


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Inta shortlisted for eight years running in prestigious industry awards

Leading Staffordshire manufacturer Inta has been shortlisted for a prestigious industry award for the eighth year running.

Hixon-based Inta, which manufactures heating, plumbing and bathroom products, is a finalist in the prestigious Heating & Ventilation News Awards 2018, which celebrate excellence and innovation across the building services industry.

It has been shortlisted in the HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) Product of the Year - Heating Peripherals category for its Inta X-Mag filter system, which was introduced at the Ecobuild show last spring to huge interest from the plumbing and heating sectors.

The product is an all-in-one magnetic filter system that is specifically designed for plant room installations where space is limited but easy accessibility is required, as well as for locations where heating systems must be kept as clean and efficient as possible.

Stuart Gizzi, Director at Inta, which is one of Staffordshire’s fastest-growing businesses, said: “Industry response to our Inta X-Mag system has been hugely positive, demonstrating that our innovative products are helping to make a real difference to plumbing and heating installers.

“Being named as a finalist in the H&V News Awards for the eighth year is testament to the quality of the products we manufacture and we’re very proud to have been recognised once again.”

Inta won a H&V News Award in 2010 for its IntaSol product, which enables solar-heated, unvented hot water cylinders to be linked with a combi boiler. Since 2012, the firm has been shortlisted every year across a variety of categories, reflecting its significant investment into product development.

This year’s winners will be announced at an awards ceremony at Grosvenor House, London, on Thursday, April 25.

Based at Airfield Industrial Estate in Hixon, Inta is the UK’s leading manufacturer of anti-scald bathroom products and a major supplier to the heating and plumbing industries. The company was named as one of Staffordshire’s top 50 fastest growing businesses in the Staffordshire Growth Barometer 2017.

For more information about Inta visit www.intatec.co.uk

PR by Reeves PR agency in Birmingham

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Free SEN workshop for parents at Lichfield’s Maple Hayes Dyslexia School

Parents of primary school children with special educational needs are invited to a free workshop with legal advice at Lichfield’s Maple Hayes Dyslexia School.

The event, on Saturday, March 2, will enable parents who are struggling to obtain appropriate provision for their children to have free legal advice from HCB Solicitors, one of the Midlands’ leading education lawyers.

Andrew Barrowclough, Head of the Education Law Department, and his team will host the dedicated SEN workshop at the specialist school, which caters for students aged 7 to 17.

Parents whose children have learning difficulties, including dyslexia, or suspected SEN, have the opportunity to learn more about Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP), which enable them to request or take control of the special provision and extra help they think would benefit their child.

Dr Daryl Brown, headteacher at Maple Hayes Dyslexia School, said: “Applying for an EHC plan is a complex and time-consuming process, so it’s important for parents to have the support they need and clear guidance on what their rights are.”

A recent report by the Daily Telegraph highlighted that children across Warwickshire and Staffordshire now have little or no access to taxpayer-funded assessments as councils have “embraced a policy of not differentiating” between dyslexics and those who struggle to read.

“We’re very pleased that HCB Solicitors will host this valuable workshop again at our school,” continued Dr Brown. “Parents can also access a free individual consultation with one of the solicitors immediately after the seminar.”

HCB Solicitors has years of experience representing parents whose children have Special Educational Needs and have assisted in securing over 1,000 places at independent specialist schools through tribunals.

Virtually all pupils who attend the Ofsted-rated ‘Outstanding’ Maple Hayes Dyslexia School have EHCP plans and are placed by 13 Midlands LEAs, including Birmingham, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Derbyshire. The Abnalls Lane school specialises in a unique approach to literacy learning for those who cannot progress adequately with conventional phonics.

The SEN workshop starts at 11.30am on Saturday, March 2. To reserve a place visit www.dyslexia.school/hcb or call 01543 264387.

PR by Reeves PR agency in Birmingham

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Calor trials UK’s first IVECO Stralis 6x2 LNG truck from Guest

Mark Holyland, National Trunking Area Manager for Calor & Shaun Taylor, Municipal, Specialist Vehicle & Emergency Services Sales Manager for Guest Motors Group.jpg

Calor has taken delivery of the UK’s first IVECO Stralis 6x2 LNG truck from dealer group Guest Truck and Van.

The tractor unit was officially handed over at Calor’s main Stoney Stanton gas storage and filling depot by Shaun Taylor, Municipal, Specialist Vehicle & Emergency Sales Manager at Guest. It will be trialled as part of Calor’s commitment to incorporating more eco-friendly, gas-powered technology in its portfolio of delivery vehicles.

The truck was then driven to Calor’s LNG station at Donington Park, part of the company’s network of six LNG refuelling stations, for its first fill.

Launched in the UK in 2018, the IVECO Stralis NP (Natural Power) LNG 460BHP 6x2 Tractor Unit has only recently gone in to production, and Guest Truck and Van  was the first dealer in the UK to offer the model for customers to trial. It is the only vehicle of its type to offer a 100 per cent gas-powered product in the UK, with no diesel and no AdBlue.

Commenting on the arrival of the new LNG truck, David Brown, Fleet Asset Manager from Calor said: “We believe LNG can help hauliers improve their operational efficiency significantly, delivering a lower cost fuel to diesel with good availability. As a result, we have many discussions with our customers about the benefits of investing in gas-powered vehicles, particularly in line with the Government’s clean air strategy to reduce roadside emissions.

“With our corporate goal to improve our own environmental performance and to become fully renewable by 2040, and our commitment to support our customers in the transition to alternative fuels, we feel that it is important to practice what we preach and introduce low-carbon, low-emission technology in to our own fleet.

“We are  looking forward to seeing the benefits of the new IVECO truck for ourselves and to enjoy the efficiencies it will deliver to our fleet.”

Shaun Taylor, Municipal, Specialist Vehicle & Emergency Services Sales Manager for Guest Truck and Van, added: “We have been encouraging our customers who are thinking of switching from diesel trucks to a more sustainable and cost-effective method of operation, to trial the vehicle so they can see the benefits for themselves.

“Until this point, gas-powered truck technology had only been available for operators of 4x2 tractor units. IVECO has now introduced a real contender to change the landscape of 6x2 fleets.

“Calor has the largest LNG refuelling network in the UK so we are delighted that the company has  chosen to trial the new truck. We look forward to seeing the cost and emissions savings.”

The Stralis NP features IVECO’s best on-road fuel efficiency technologies and services to deliver up to 15 per cent less fuel consumption and up to nine per cent lower total cost of ownership than a diesel truck. Its solid eco credentials mean that compared to Euro VI limits, it delivers up to a 99 per cent reduction in particulate matter and up to a 60 per cent drop in NOx. It’s also quiet, operating at less than 71dB in ‘Silent Mode’. 

David Brown concludes: “With many manufacturers predicting that natural gas-powered vehicles could account for 20 per cent of HGVs sold by the early 2020s, we believe the future opportunities for LNG are really exciting.

“It will help to reduce our reliance on diesel further still, lower CO2 emissions and help meet our customers’ increasingly tougher environmental demands.”

For more information on natural gas fuel solutions for the freight industry, please visit www.calor.co.uk/business/transport-and-logistics.

PR by Reeves PR agency in Birmingham

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Birmingham cabbies invited to test-drive the electric TX Taxi for 48 hours

Birmingham Hackney cab drivers are being invited to try out an electric vehicle that can help them save money - and meet the new Clean Air Zone (CAZ) regulations that are being introduced next year.

Coventry-based LEVC (London EV Company - formerly the London Taxi Company) is heading to Birmingham city centre tomorrow [Thursday, February 7], when it will have on display its new TX Taxi, the world’s first purpose-built electric taxi.

Not only will cabbies have the chance to learn all about the new vehicle, which can save drivers between £70 and £110 a week in fuel costs, has a total range of 377 miles and also has a host of environmentally friendly features, they can also sign up for a complimentary 48-hour test drive.

Drivers will also have the opportunity to ask the experts questions about the vehicle, which was introduced into London in 2018, the benefits of switching from diesel to TX, as well as speak to Octopus, about a new pay-per-mile finance deal.

The visit comes just a week after the Business Breathes website was launched - the one-stop, go-to site for fleet managers and self-employed drivers who need to prepare for January 2020, when the CAZ is introduced in Birmingham city centre.

The comprehensive website, which has been launched as part of Brum Breathes, Birmingham City Council’s air quality campaign to reduce emissions of harmful pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide (NO₂) and particulate matter that cause poor air quality and associated health problems, aims to encourage businesses to move over to cleaner vehicles.

Steve Cootes, Commercial Director of LEVC, said: “With the Clean Air Zone regulations coming into force in 12 months’ time in Birmingham, it’s the ideal time for Hackney cab drivers to explore what a green TX Taxi could mean for them.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the positive response to the TX from drivers across the country and hope that Birmingham cabbies take the opportunity to find out why over a thousand of their fellow drivers have made the switch.”

The combined CO₂ emissions on the official WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test) drive cycle, which includes use of the range-extender, is 20 g/km. This compares to between 212 and 244 g/km for a diesel London Taxi, depending on the model and age.

As well as reducing pollution levels and improving air quality, the TX Taxi, which has on-board WiFi, USB connections and a panoramic roof, qualifies for national or local subsidies, as well as tax discounts.

The vehicle also has a small petrol range-extender, which acts as a generator to send electrical energy to the battery and ensures drivers are able to complete their fare before needing to stop to recharge.

The TX display will be at the link subway to the Mailbox on February 7 from 8.30am-4pm. A limited number of parking bays have been reserved for Hackney cab drivers - simply turn up on the day and staff will guide drivers to the spaces.

For more details about the TX Taxi, visit  https://www.theelectrictaxi.co.uk/

For details about Business Breathes, visit: businessbreathes.co.uk

PR by Reeves agency in Birmingham

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Dunlop gain performance in VLN Endurance Test

Dunlop has concluded a tyre test programme that will result in new tyres being introduced into the German VLN Endurance Championship, with the goal of making another step forward in performance.

Aiming to build on a successful season in the Nürburgring Nordschleife based series, where Dunlop-equipped cars took several overall and class wins in 2018, the tyre company headed to Portugal’s Autodromo Internacional Algarve to test new ideas and concepts for the 2019 season.

The coastal circuit was chosen for several reasons. Firstly, in Winter it has a similar climate to the Nürburgring in the Spring. Secondly, the circuit features a range of contours, inclines, crests and cambers that allow tyre engineers to replicate the forces that will be experienced at the notoriously challenging German circuit.

Three days of intensive testing

Over three days, 11 different cars took part in the test. For GT3 cars, which compete in the top SP9 category of VLN, Dunlop tested new specifications on the latest Audi R8 LMS, BMW M6 and Mercedes-AMG GT. In 2018, Dunlop tyres were used to win two races, both with Porsche 911 GT3 R, and one of the goals was to replicate this high level of performance across a range of different car models.

The VLN regulations allow a limited number of front and rear tyre specifications per car type each season, giving tyre manufacturers ample scope to innovate and introduce new technologies. It is this technical freedom that drives Dunlop to develop, according to Alexander Kühn, Product Manager, Motorsport Europe; “We have made a step forward during this test and validated new specifications that we expect to use in the early part of the season.

“Our objective has been to widen the operating window of the tyre range. The Nürburgring has notoriously fickle weather and having a range that can cater for single figure temperatures to a searingly hot track is important. In that respect, I’m confident that we have made a step forward.”

GT4 becomes a Dunlop focus area

The GT4 category features cars that are closer to production specification. A varied range of models are eligible, including cars as diverse as the BMW M4, Porsche Cayman and Aston Martin Vantage. After two years of running the class as a control tyre formula, the VLN organiser has opened the class to all tyre manufacturers.

Kühn is excited about the tyre manufacturer battle in this category; “Dunlop has a lot of experience in GT4 and Touring Car racing and we are adapting proven technology from other categories to our VLN tyre range. Last year, in the production SP8 class, the Dunlop equipped Racing One Ferrari 458 dominated, winning every race. Our experience of this programme has been applied to our GT4 range.”

Dunlop has been chosen to equip the VLN’s closely fought 'TCR' Touring Car classes with its latest generation of race tyres and the Algarve test was used to assess specifications for this category. In TCR, a standard 265/660R18 specification will be used on a wide range of cars, including the Audi RS3 LMS, Hyundai i30 N, Opel Astra, Seat Cupra and Volkswagen Golf GTI. Dunlop’s goal in this class is to ensure the tyre specification offers equal performance for every entrant.

Also present at the test was the Revolution Sports Prototype, which completed over 1,000 kilometres of testing, ahead of its debut in the one-marque UK Revolution Trophy this year. Dunlop has been appointed as sole tyre supplier and finalised the tyre specification for the 440bhp/tonne lightweight racer at the test.

Dunlop will return to the Autodromo Algarve in late March to test latest tyre specifications for the European Le Mans Series.

PR by Reeves PR agency and Pitbox91 in Birmingham

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Colmore Tang launches social housing division

Colmore Tang Construction (CTC), one of the UK’s fastest-growing construction firms, has launched a specialist arm to provide a bespoke service to housing associations and providers of social housing.

Colmore Tang Living, which aims to source land in the east, west and south Midlands to deliver up to 100 high-quality houses per site, will be a one-stop shop for sourcing land, achieving planning and delivering properties.

It promises to be a valuable asset to housing associations that have begun ambitious acquisition programmes to satisfy the need for land to deliver 250,000 new homes over the next five years, said Andy Robinson, CEO of Colmore Tang Group.

“In the past five years since we launched CTC, we’ve delivered more than 2,000 homes for private sale and rent, so the move into social housing is the obvious next step for us,” he said. “Social housing is an increasingly important area and the need to build hundreds of thousands of homes has never been more urgent.

“Our expertise in identifying suitable sites and bringing them through the planning process, as well as delivering maximum value and providing the skills to deliver and construct quality homes, means we are in the ideal position to work alongside social housing providers. It’s also heartening to be able to deliver our quality homes with a social purpose.”

The launch of Colmore Tang Living will also enable the organisation to enter into the off-site manufacturing market, building the houses using modern methods of construction.

CTC’s interest in off-site manufacturing grew last year, following the launch of its technology accelerator programme, ConstrucTech; a £10m innovation fund for start-up companies to demonstrate an  innovation or technology to improve the sector’s productivity, sustainability and skills issues.  

“We’ve long championed forward-thinking practices that bring significant benefits to the construction industry, and off-site manufacturing is a fast, lean and efficient method that we are keen to be involved with,” added Andy.

Colmore Tang Living aims to be on its first site in Q2 2019 and is already in advanced discussions with housing associations about sourcing appropriate plots for development.

According to Government statistics, almost four million households in England live in the social housing sector and the number of households is projected to rise by 220,000 every year. More than one million households are on local authority waiting lists, with more than 50,000 classed as priority due to homelessness. Last year, the Government allocated £2 billion for social housing over 10 years (2020-2030).

For more information about Colmore Tang Living visit www.colmoretang.com/living.

PR by Reeves PR agency in Birmingham

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Birmingham hotel appoints new revenue manager

Alistair Graham, Revenue Manager at Park Regis Birmingham.jpg

Park Regis Birmingham, the deluxe four star hotel in the city centre, has appointed a new revenue manager as the business enters its third year of trade.

Alistair Graham joins the hotel from the De Vere Tortworth Court, Wotton-under-Edge, where he had worked as a revenue manager for more than six years.

The 34-year-old business and events management graduate, who has worked in the hotel industry since the age of 17, will be part of the senior management team, taking responsibility for the hotel budget, overseeing all events and ensuring the smooth running of the administrative side of the business.

“I’m excited to have the opportunity to have a senior role at an independently owned, standalone hotel, where I’ll have the freedom to come up with creative ideas that will appeal to our existing customers and can attract new clients,” he said.

“There’s the additional challenge of working in a city centre hotel, which is different from a country house property. I’m really looking forward to playing my part in the success of Park Regis Birmingham.

“In the three years that it has been open in Birmingham, Park Regis has helped to transform the hotel offering in the city, providing superb conferencing and events facilities, as well as first-class dining, city spa and deluxe rooms.”

Mark Payne, general manager at Park Regis Birmingham, said: “I’m very pleased to have brought Alistair in to the senior management team. His pedigree in the hotel sector is second to none and his expertise is the ideal complement to our experienced senior team.”

PR by Reeves PR agency in Birmingham

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Website launched to help businesses prepare for Birmingham Clean Air Zone

A website has been launched to help businesses get to grips with the Clean Air Zone (CAZ), which will be launched in Birmingham city centre in 12 months’ time.

Business Breathes is the one-stop, go-to site for fleet managers and self-employed drivers that need to prepare for January 2020, which is when the CAZ is introduced.

It is packed with information on low-emission vehicles that will comply with the CAZ requirements, grants and incentives that will be available if businesses need to upgrade their vehicles to avoid the charges, as well as recharging and refuelling points.

It also includes handy features, such as a postcode checker to see if a business or location is within the CAZ zone and a ready reckoner to demonstrate how much money a low-emission option - such as an electric, gas or hydrogen vehicle - could save a business compared to a petrol or diesel model that does not comply with CAZ requirements.

The comprehensive Business Breathes website, which has been launched as part of Brum Breathes, Birmingham City Council’s air quality campaign to reduce emissions of harmful pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide (NO₂) and particulate matter that cause poor air quality and associated health problems, aims to encourage businesses to move over to cleaner vehicles.

Councillor Waseem Zaffar, Cabinet Member for Transport and Environment at Birmingham City Council, said: “The Clean Air Zone will represent a significant change in terms of the way people travel around the city, so it is important that those who rely on the use of vehicles for their business are able to make the necessary preparations and access the relevant support ahead of its implementation in January 2020.

“The Business Breathes website provides a valuable one-stop shop for fleet managers and self-employed drivers to access the information they need to make the switch to greener, cleaner transport options, ensuring Birmingham stays open for business while also helping the city achieve cleaner air for those who live and work here.”  

This CAZ will not only help to improve the city’s overall air quality, it will also reduce emissions of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide. The new website has been designed to provide people who need to access the city centre, with information to ensure that their mode of transport is compliant and to help them plan for any changes they might need to make.

For more details, visit: businessbreathes.co.uk

PR by Reeves PR agency in Birmingham

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A New Year might mean a new kitchen or bathroom - but how do you overcome the same old limescale?

The start of a New Year marks a time for change, with many homeowners looking to revamp their property for the better.

In 2018, kitchens and bathrooms proved the most popular rooms to renovate, with the average new kitchen in the UK costing around £11,000, and the average price of a new bathroom coming in at £5,000*.

But when it comes to designing kitchens and bathrooms, one thing that often gets overlooked is the issue of hard water and the damage it can cause.

“Almost 13 million households in the UK live in hard water areas - that’s almost half the households in the country. And with hard water comes limescale,” said Stuart Gizzi, director of leading bathroom, plumbing and heating equipment manufacturer Inta.

Stuart Gizzi

Stuart Gizzi

“Having a beautiful new kitchen or bathroom is all well and good until taps, shower heads, kettles, appliances and pipes have a nasty build-up of limescale, which can lead to multiple problems - from heating inefficiency hiking up energy bills and costly system failure, to an increase in the consumption of cleaning products and a shorter lifespan for electrical appliances.”

A simple, cost-effective way of improving water quality in hard water areas is to install a water conditioner, such as the Inta ActivFlo Lite.

The ActivFlo Lite is a compact device that is fitted to one water pipe in a property, and can be retro fitted. It works by treating the water directly, using a unique alloy that changes the chemical structure of limescale-forming calcium carbonate in water, converting calcite, a form of calcium carbonate that causes hard water, into aragonite.

Suitable for domestic applications, the WRAS-approved ActivFlo Lite is available with 15mm, 22mm and 28mm connections. It comes with a five-year warranty and is priced from just £53.22.

“The ActivFlo Lite has a clean ‘in-line’ design which makes for quick and easy installation in both new-build and retrofit applications,” added Stuart. “Its patented fitting system incorporates a collar at either end of the device, which can be removed without any modification to the existing pipework.

“When you consider the tens of thousands of pounds people spend on a kitchen or bathroom makeover, installing an ActivFlo Lite for an extra £53 is worth every penny if hard water issues can be resolved - it works out to less than 1% of the cost of a new kitchen!”

For more information about the ActivFlo Lite, visit www.activ-tec.com

PR by Reeves PR agency in Birmingham

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