Expert Views at the top for our first ‘Technical Talk’ 

Our first ‘Technical Talk’ took place on Tuesday 25th September at the top of the iconic Gherkin in London. With breath taking views of the city and attendance from some of the industry’s leading experts in construction. It was a stunning location and great atmosphere to discuss ‘high risk’ areas facing the construction of high rise buildings, including lessons learnt from previous projects and best practice.


Speakers and Topics

The upsurge of high rise developments means architects, developers, building control and insurance providers face new challenges, especially in light of the current review of standards and an increasingly uncertain economic climate. The aim of our first ‘Technical Talk’ was to address these issues with the help of our expert speakers.


On first we had Martin Taylor, Commercial Director for LACBC, who looked at ‘The Hackitt Review and potential implications for the industry’.

Martin has worked within Local Authority Building Control (LABC) for over 30 years
delivering building control services to a wide portfolio of clients and building types.

More recently, he coordinated LABC’s response to Dame Judith Hackitt’s Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety as a member of both Working Group 1 (Construction, Design and Refurbishment) and the Golden Thread Working Group. He further assisted with the preparation of the MHCLG information notes associated with the remediation of building cladding systems. 

On next we had Clive Everett, Facade Technical Standards Director at LABC Warranty. Clive’s presentation on ‘Fire compliant facades (18.0m+) -the background, updates and the future’ certainly initiated discussion within the room.

With 34 years’ experience in diverse façade and having previously been engaged at long-term strategic director level positions at one of the UK’s largest specialist facade contractors and held director level positions within the facade teams of the multidisciplinary engineering consultancy practices of Europa, Gifford and Ramboll UK Clive certainly knew his stuff! He is also published in both ICE and Architects Journal and is a guest lecturer at Kingston University, and London Metropolitan University.

Following on nicely from Clive we heard from our HVS Technical Director, Colin Lendon who talked us through the use of ‘Balconies, including fire, drainage and structural components in high rise buildings’.

From starting in building control and moving to the Approved Inspector private sector when it opened up in the mid 90’s Colin has over 30 years’ experience in construction legislation and quality. As HVS Technical Director he works alongside our Major Project Managers to ensure client projects achieve the standards required whilst understanding the types of construction used for complex, often high rise buildings.

After a quick break for a “top notch” bacon sandwich we dived straight back into some more technical talk from Bill Whitfield, Managing Director of LABC Acoustics and Ltd.

Bill discussed ‘Noise Mitigation Design and Conflicting Building Requirements’. He has been a practicing acoustician since 1989 and started Ltd in 2001 with a focus on noise & vibration services for the construction industry and particularly planning related issues with respect to the housing and non-domestic market. He also services the housing warranty and insurance market with respect to claims relating to sound insulation in separating walls and floors between dwellings.

Our final topic for the breakfast seminar focused on ‘Overheating in Dwellings’ presented by Richard Smith, Technical Director at LABC Warranty.

Richard has over 20 years of industry experience. He trained at North Warwickshire Borough Council and his background is in building control. His team are responsible for investigating all claims and providing remediation solutions to defective buildings, providing training to surveyors, ensuring they are competent in their role and to audit surveyors on site to establish that LABC Warranty surveyors are delivering high standards, managing the risk and meeting customer service levels.

What’s next?

We would love to share more technical knowledge with you through our ‘Technical Talks’ and planning has already started for the next in the series!

If you have any specific topics that you think would be good to discuss in an event like this or you would be interested in attending future events, please email us with the subject line ‘Technical Talks’ to

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