City People Want to Escape to the Country Just as Construction Sector Slashes More Jobs

City living has definitely lost its appeal to many living in the capital and other major cities around the UK.  Lockdown has thrown up its own set of problems, and at its peak the Coronavirus left many families unable to get any access to the outdoors, apart from their 1 hour of exercise per day.  With 21% of Londoners having no garden, and rental prices at a premium, it’s no wonder that more urban locations and country living are on the radar of city dwellers.

The trend in relocating is nothing new; the 1665 Great Plague saw those that could afford to, flee London, and even parliament moved to Oxford at the time. And in more recent times, the London bombings in 2005 saw a spike in interest in rural locations. Although these moves have been largely temporary, the post COVID world may be a different place altogether.

Lockdown has proven for many employers that workforces can be just as effective working from home.  Technology has offered tools that have never been available before.  Employers and employees alike have gotten into a rhythm whereby they can attend meetings virtually and produce work from home, rendering the need for office space (and the pricey overhead that goes with it) effectively redundant.

With families having reassessed their wants and needs during lockdown, city living no longer appeals to many of them.  So what will this mean for the housing market in more rural areas?

With a sharp boom in activity within the construction industry as lockdown eased a few weeks ago, housebuilders and developers should be busier than ever.  Sadly, the rate of construction job cuts increased during July despite the industry’s rise in output.

House building was the main growth driver in July, which also saw a sharp rise in construction orders.  But where confidence in the economy has taken a nosedive, clients are declining to commit to new projects.  Construction firms have battled to catch up with pre-Coronavirus projects, but the competition for the purchase of raw materials has resulted in higher costs, the knock on effect being redundancies.

The escape to the country may just be a pipe dream for some, as housing developments could take longer to recover than anticipated.

The true strength of the economy isn’t likely to be known until the end of the furlough scheme in the Autumn.  This may put a different light on the subject for those would-be relocators!

If you would like to get further information on our plant hire services, you can access it here.

How Many Construction Workers are Receiving Government Support?

The Government’s job retention scheme left many self-employed workers feeling neglected, isolated, and worried about their income.  It was first announced on 20th March that only employed workers were entitled to be part of the furlough scheme. It wasn’t until 26th March that self-employed workers could breathe a sigh of relief knowing that the SEISS (Self-employment income support scheme) was to be launched, enabling the self-employed to claim a grant to cover wages lost during the coronavirus pandemic.

One of the hardest hit sectors during this time has been construction.  With many building sites now open, but unable to operate effectively because of social distancing rules, many workers find themselves still unable to return to work. Therefore, they are more reliant than ever on the government backed furlough or grant schemes.

Details have been released by HM Revenue and Customs where it is estimated that almost 1.5 million construction workers are benefiting from the government backed schemes, and that those schemes will continue to run until the end of October. 680,000 of those are furloughed within the Coronavirus job retention scheme, whilst a further 800,000 are receiving grants from the self-employment income support scheme.

The chancellor of the exchequer, Rishi Sunak has stated: “The UK government is doing everything we can to protect jobs and businesses across the UK during the crisis.  Our unprecedented job retention and self-employment support schemes have supported the livelihoods of millions and will help ensure our recovery is as swift as possible.”  

Encouragingly, many major contractors and housebuilders have reopened, with the hope that their sales offices will follow swiftly behind.  This will all be easier to manage if the government reassess social distancing rules. Other sectors will struggle to reopen if the current 2 metre social distancing rule doesn’t change. The Hospitality industry, restaurants and pubs are keen for the guidance to be reviewed, in line with many MPs requests to reduce the 2 metre rule to 1 metre.

What is clear, is that we are all having to get used to a new normal; our new way of working could well be here to stay, if not, at least for the next few months.

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Haulage Safety Technology and its Benefits

Haulage is a massive part of our transportation system and with so much traffic on our roads, it’s no wonder that there are so many accidents.  The total number rises year on year, every year.  Statistically, accidents with HGVs are far less common than with cars or bikes, but due to their sheer size and weight, HGV accidents are more likely to be fatal.  A lorry travelling at 50mph could rip through a building, so occupants of a car, van or other vehicle stand very little chance of survival in the event of a collision with an HGV.

Fortunately, even though the number of accidents keeps rising, so do safety standards, making HGV driving safer than ever before.  Technology has progressed at such a pace, that it can now be matched to virtually anything, from microchips being manufactured that are practically invisible, to huge supercomputers capable of performing quadrillions of calculations per second.

For the humble HGV, technology has been developed to help with day to day safety, to protect both the driver and general public.  These safety measures won’t stop fatalities, but there could be a great reduction in the road traffic accidents that HGVs are involved in, therefore reducing the number of HGV accident related deaths.

One such technology is the Lane Departure Warning System; a mechanism designed to keep the vehicle traveling in lane and preventing ‘drifting’.  Using cameras and sensors the device monitors the vehicle’s position on the road and will alert the driver if it goes off course suddenly.

Another is GPS monitoring which allows haulage companies to check the driver and their driving performance throughout the journey of the vehicle.  Careless driving is also detected!

As with some cars, HGVs can be fitted with an Automatic Braking System.  This will automatically activate the vehicle’s braking system when necessary, using crash avoidance technologies such as sensors, cameras and radar.

Here at Eynesbury Plant Hire, the safety of our staff, drivers and the general public is paramount.  You can find out more about us and the haulage services that we offer here.

Important factors that an HGV driver must consider

Everyone’s busy.  We’re all trying to get from A to B as quickly and safely as possible. But have you ever considered the extra care that HGV drivers have to take in order for their loads to reach their destinations in one piece?

Here at Eynesbury Plant Hire we provide road haulage container contractor services, which means that a lot of our lorries are on UK roads every single day.  Although our drivers are trained to drive these heavy goods vehicles (which are up to ten times the size of an average car), with traffic on our roads constantly increasing, there are far more hazards than ever before.

With accidents involving HGVs being amongst the more serious due to the sheer size and weight of the vehicles, HGV drivers need to be far more vigilant than the average car driver.  Here’s why:

Parking

Small car drivers can park relatively easily just about anywhere.  Some won’t think about how much remaining space is required for a lorry to pass through safely.  For an HGV driver parked cars are one of the biggest obstructions when it comes to reaching their destination safely.  Cars parked near to, or opposite junctions are dangerous, as a lorry’s turning circle can be seriously compromised.

Distance

Keeping a safe distance is vitally important for an HGV driver.  Due to the size and weight of the vehicle, stopping distances are hugely increased in comparison to a car.  Likewise, cars should keep a safe distance from lorries, as the length of the vehicle can make it very difficult for the driver to see any vehicles travelling behind them, even with the use of mirrors.

Timing

HGV drivers have targets to meet. They have to get their loads to their destinations on time the same as you have to get to work on time.  You’ll rarely see an HGV breaking any speed limits, but it doesn’t mean that they aren’t eager to get to where they need to be.  It just means that they’re taking every care to get there safely, to get their load there undamaged, and to make sure that you, the other drivers, aren’t in any danger from them on their journey.

Consideration

Any person that drives an HGV is under strict rules to take a break after every 4.5 hours of driving.  This means they have to find safe places to stop, which can sometimes be difficult on single carriage roads.  This is why you’ll often see huge lorries parked up on roadside laybys. It’s not that they’re time wasting; they’re required by law to take regular scheduled breaks.  General consideration to and from other road users is part of an HGV driver’s training. Signalling of manoeuvres, safe driving distances and overall awareness of the road conditions will help to keep everyone safe!

If you would like to find out more about our Haulage Service, follow this link.

A Brief History of Haulage

It’s hard to imagine a time before there were HGVs on our roads, but the haulage industry has changed dramatically in the last 100 years or so.  When you look up and down your local high street at some of the old buildings, many of them would have had their bricks and mortar brought in by barrows and horse drawn carts.  Since then, the industry has become one of the biggest across the world, driven by technology and the economy.  Everything that we buy here in the UK is transported at some point by a UK registered lorry.

So where did it all start?

Steam power

The railways provided transport for large amounts of heavy, voluminous items, which could be moved great distances with relative ease.  At last people, as well as goods were able to travel further by the power of the steam train.

The combustion Engine

In the late 1800s the first combustion engine was patented, prompting companies to produce their own vehicles powered by this new innovation, including trucks.  As the amount of traffic on the roads increased, so did the quality of the road surfaces themselves – tarmac was first used after its invention in 1901. Pneumatic, or air filled tyres came into use after WW1.

Between the wars

UK haulage grew 300% by the early 1920s. With economic growth, the UKs demand for goods meant that more lorries were needed to transport these goods from factories and ports.  The Road Haulage Association was formed in the early 1930s.

Post War

Freight was increasingly transported by road after the war, as the railways struggled to keep up with demand due to a decaying infrastructure and a reliance on steam.  A new network of roads allowed increased vehicle size and reduced journey time.

The 60s and 70s

By 1960 there were well over half a million lorries on UK roads. The ‘Golden Age of Road Transport’ continued!  As mass manufacturing, and an increase in cheap imports grew, so did the need for a more fluid logistics industry.  As this new era drove innovation, lorries continued to change. By the mid-60s the maximum permitted weight for an articulated lorry rose from 24 tons to 32 tons. In 1968 the length limit was raised to 49 feet!  In-vehicle accommodation improved allowing lorry drivers to spend weeks away from home.

The 80s and 90s

The early 80s saw the number of five-axle articulated vehicles grow rapidly, whilst in 1989 a directive issued by the European Community increased the maximum permissible weight of certain vehicles, provided they were fitted with ‘road-friendly suspension’. Changes to the industry continued to change into the 90s with more self-employed owner-drivers. Typically the average owner-driver would own one or two HGVs and sign on to a haulage firm as an independent contractor. Safety was improving with the introduction of speed limiters.

Today

The road transport industry has remained relatively stable, although LGV traffic has grown whilst HGV vehicles have reduced.  This could be because of the growth in the parcel delivery industry, and many people living in areas where it’s more difficult for lorries to get to.

What is true, is that haulage is the UKs fifth largest employment sector.  We think it’s here to stay!

You can find more information about our haulage services here.

Plant and Digger Hire Bedfordshire

At Eynesbury Plant Hire, we deliver plant hire, haulage, road sweepers and diggers in Bedfordshire and beyond! We provide all customers with service that goes above and beyond. With over 50 years in the business, we can provide our expert advice and guide you on the best machinery and transportation for any job.

We have a wide range of plant and digger hire services to suit our client’s needs, all of our plant hire services are extremely well maintained with regular servicing. The last thing you want is equipment to fail you, that’s why we stick to strict processes to ensure all of our equipment and transportation is in brilliant working order. With our forever-growing customer base, we know how important it is to provide only the best. That’s why our plant hire fleet is constantly updated!

All Eynesbury Plant Hire operators are competent and experienced with current CPCS cards, we are also CHAS accredited. We deliver our plant and digger hire service to your specified destination, and once delivered you can choose to either use one of our CPCS accredited operators, or alternatively, you can use our plant hire on a self-drive basis.

With an impressive range of hire services, we can help with the transportation of particularly heavy and large objects in and around Bedfordshire such as static homes, construction materials and trees.

We always carry out pre and post checks to ensure our equipment stays in excellent shape and is ready for our next hire client. Full service histories and annual safety check documentation is available for our entire fleet.

For outstanding customer service and reliable plant and digger hire, look no further! For more information regarding hire, or a quote, contact our office near Bedfordshire on 01480 215555 where the team will be happy to assist.

Plant, Hiab, Digger and Road Sweeper Hire Cambridgeshire

Are you looking for reliable plant, Hiab, digger and road sweeper hire in the Cambridgeshire area? With over 50 years in the plant hire business, we can help with all of your transportation and machinery needs! We pride ourselves on offering superior customer service, we’re always on hand to help and advise you to ensure a smooth hire process. If you’re unsure on the scale of equipment you require, our expert team are always happy to help.

Every member of our Cambridgeshire based team are experienced with current CPCS cards, we are also CHAS accredited! You can enjoy peace of mind that you’re in capable hands with extensive experience working on a high number of large-scale projects. We can help with providing Hiab lorries, diggers and road sweepers for your project. We’ve built up an extensive range of modern equipment, all of which is kept in excellent working order.

All of our plant hire services are regularly maintained, updated and serviced to ensure we provide our customers with only the best! We understand how important it is that your transportation and machinery is reliable. We will deliver our plant hire services to your specified destination, you can choose to either use one of our CPCS accredited operators, or alternatively, you can use our plant hire on a self-drive basis.

We currently offer both 48-ton and 62-ton Hiab rental. If you’re not sure which is best for your requirements, just get in touch and we can direct you to the best solution.

Our impressive fleet of road sweepers provide consistently high pick up performance including dirt pick up around site and cleaning access roads. Our sweepers are designed for high productivity.

Need a digger asap? We have a number of excavators available, from 1.5-ton up to 14-ton for heavier duty works.

For a quote, or further information regarding our plant, Hiab, digger and road sweeper hire, contact our office in Cambridgeshire on 01480 215555 where the team will be happy to help you with your enquiry.

Plant, Digger and Dumper Hire Hertfordshire

At Eynesbury Plant Hire, we regularly work with Hertfordshire based construction companies and individuals, providing reliable plant, digger and dumper hire. Established in 1966 we’ve built an impressive customer base, and boast extensive experience in providing plant hire for projects of all sizes! Our team can help you to choose the best equipment for the job, we’re always happy to listen to your requirements and assist in selecting the correct digger or dumper needed.

We know that it’s of utmost importance that your machinery and equipment is reliable and in excellent working order. We regularly maintain and service our entire fleet to ensure they’re up to date and meeting our high standards. We have a number of strict processes and always ensure that pre and post checks are carried out to make sure that our equipment remains in excellent shape. Full service histories and annual safety check documentation is available for our entire fleet.

Our fleet of dumpers includes forward tip, high tip and swivel trucks from 1 up to 9-ton. We offer quality, reliable dumper trucks with great fuel economy.

Need a digger in Hertfordshire? We have a range of different quality excavators available, from 1.5-ton up to 14-ton for heavier duty projects.

All of our operators here at Eynesbury Plant Hire are highly skilled and experienced with current CPCS cards, we are also CHAS accredited. We deliver our plant hire services directly to you, you can then choose to either use one of our qualified accredited operators, or alternatively, you can use our plant hire on a self-drive basis instead.

For further information regarding our plant, digger and dumper hire contact our office in Hertfordshire on 01480 215555 where the team will be happy to help you with your enquiry. We can guarantee a sensible quote and fantastic customer service.