Works are progressing well at the Command of the Heights project at Fort Amherst, Chatham. The National Lottery Heritage Fund scheme includes the adaptation of the casemates of a former Napoleonic fort into an open air theatre, provision of new toilet facilities, and re-landscaping of the waterfront area on the site of a former MOD depot. The fort itself is a Scheduled Ancient Monument, largely looked after by a dedicated team of volunteers. CBG Consultants have worked with Medway Council and pdp Green Consulting on the delivery of the project since 2016, and it is great to see it come into fruition, with Coleman James as main contractors. Watch out for an official opening in September 2019. (📸 Phil Pead – Medway Council)
CBG Consultants achieves Investors in People (IIP) Silver Standard
We are pleased to announce that after 10 months of hard work we have been accredited as an Investors in People (IIP) Silver organisation.
Investors in People is the international standard for people management, defining what it takes to lead, support and manage people effectively to achieve sustainable results. Underpinning the Standard is the Investors in People framework, reflecting the latest workplace trends, essential skills and effective structures required to outperform in any industry. IIP is about empowering the talent within the organisation to create greater success.
The level of service that we provide to our clients is directly related to the development and calibre of our team and we are proud to support the learning, development and career progression of those working with us.
To achieve the silver accreditation, surveys were used to shape our company’s values and vision and identify how we can improve our working practices, culture and environment for the good of everybody. Auditors measure our performance based on the IIP framework which is organised around nine key indicators of high performance, each with three underpinning themes.
Successful accreditation against the IIP Standard is the sign of a great employer, an outperforming place to work and a clear commitment to sustainability, so we are very proud to have passed this assessment, and to now be fully accredited until 2021.
CBG Consultants to become a #ForceForGood with Heart of the City
We want to do well by doing good. This year we’re proud to be members of Heart of the City – they’re supporting us to develop a responsible business programme that will help us have a positive impact on people, places and the planet.
During 2019 we’ll be developing activities around connecting with and supporting our local community, making sure our business practices are environmentally friendly and improving our workplace for employees. We’re excited to keep you updated with what we’re doing!
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
Wishing you a Wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year from all at CBG Consultants Ltd.
We are proud to have supported many charities throughout 2018 and in lieu of Christmas Cards we shall be making a donation to our Charity of the Year;
Support for Sick Newborn & Their Parents (SSNAP) at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford.
We are pleased to announce the opening of our new Cambridge office!
In response to the successful delivery of a number of projects in the Cambridgeshire region and as part of our strategic growth. Our new office will allow us to comfortably continue to grow and provide our clients with the highest level of service within this exciting area.
Our new office space is located in the heart of the city, the address is:
Opening of the Dojima Sake Brewery at Fordham Abbey
Founded 600 years ago by the Hashimoto family in Osaka, the Dojima Sake Brewery has opened its first brewery in the UK and we were delighted to attend the opening within the historic grounds of Fordham Abbey in Ely, Cambridge.
Sake is a Japanese alcoholic drink made of fermented rice with brewing now started at Dojima. Commencing with a traditional Kagami-wari ceremony (Sake Barrell breaking) which was attended by the Japanese Ambassador, Director for International trade, Head of Japanese studies at Cambridge University and many local and international dignitaries.
The building design is of a barn like structure which houses the different processes involved with Sake brewing including the washing, steaming, koji mixing, fermentation and storage tanks and finally bottling. A visitor area and café are accommodated at the rear. The architecture includes windows and rooflights to give an abundance of daylight and natural ventilation ensures that the process rooms achieve good environmental performance.
CBG were appointed as M&E consultants for the project which included the building environmental design, process and production services and the major infrastructure upgrades to the site.
Sitting at the apex of the Cherwell and Thames, the project saw the complete renovation of the gym, modernisation of services within the boat store, and a new punt store extension created. The terrace and gym enjoy stunning views across the rivers, a nice respite from the tough training regimes for the rowing teams.
Oxford Open Doors – September 2018
This weekend sees the return of Oxford Open Doors. Organised by the Oxford Preservation Trust, dozens of the city’s finest buildings, old and new, are open to see.
CBG have been privileged to work in a fair few of them over the years, reaching places normally out of bounds to the public. These range from Grade I Listed buildings of national importance such as The Old Bodleian, Natural History Museum, and the University Church, to some of Oxford’s contemporary new builds at St Hugh’s and Kellogg. Other interesting sites we’ve worked at include The Exam Schools, Christ Church, Balliol College St Cross Archives, the Lucy’s development on Walton Street, and Oxford University Press. A great chance to get out in the city and see some interesting sites.
The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) came into force in England and Wales in April 2018, these standards apply to private rented residential and non-domestic properties.
The aim of the MEES is to encourage landlords and property owners to improve the energy efficiency of their properties by upgrading fabric, installing new boilers and energy efficient lighting etc.
Properties with EPC ratings of E or less will be subject to restriction on the granting and continuation of the existing tenancies .
Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) applies to any privately rented property which are legally required to have Energy Performance Certificate (EPC), these include assured short hold, regulated and domestic agricultural tenancies. From April 2018, landlords will not be able to grant a tenancy to new or existing tenants with an EPC rating of F and G and from 1 April 2020, they’ll not be able to continue letting the property without improvements.
Landlords are not expected to finance the cost of improvements but to use third party resources such as Green Deal and Local authority improvement grants. Exemption can be claimed where they are not able to get the funding/grant to cover the cost of the improvements, or are not able to achieve the minimum EPC rating (E) even after improvements. Any exemption must be registered on the RPS Exemption Register.
Non-Domestic Private Rented Property
Similarly, as above from 1 April 2018, non domestic landlords must not grant new tenancies without the minimum energy efficiency standards. They cannot continue to let the property after 1 April 2023 where property has an EPC rating of below E.
All the improvements to Non-Domestic properties will be funded by landlord or tenant, there is no third-party funding available. Landlords may be able to claim exemption, all exemptions must be registered on the RPS Exemption Register.
We have a team of Qualified Level 3, 4 and 5 Energy Assessors, who can provide assistance with MEES compliance and provide advise on how to achieve MEES compliant building. Please do contact us should you wish to find out more.
A Sunny Afternoon in Oxford!
Always seeking an excuse to take a sunny walk in Oxford, Chris Dicks took time out between meetings for a stroll around the Thames and Christ Church Meadows, to look at a few current and former CBG Consultants Oxford projects.
First stop was the Cathedral at Christ Church, where we are nearing completion of the first phase of the new lighting project. Working with Purcell, Monard Electrical, and specialist designers, the project sees the replacement of energy hungry and failure prone halogen lights with high performance LEDs.
The next stop was our project completed with A2 Dominion and Yurky Cross, at Thames Street. Completed around 2015, this £8M project comprised of four residential blocks, with a mixture of social housing and student accommodation.
Continuing on the Thames waterfront, Chris checked in on our refurbishment project at Christ Church’s Boat House. Working with Robert Montgomery Architects, new changing facilities, gym, workshops, punt store and kitchen are being provided. Then it was on to the Jubilee Bridge, where CBG assisted Christ Church with infrastructure services to this elegant new footbridge, opened by the Dean in 2014.
After a pleasant walk through the Meadows, Chris reached the famous Broadwalk, along the sunny south site of Christ Church. We have worked on several major refurbishment projects with Sidleys Chartered Surveyors in the Meadows buildings over the years, including the main visitor entrance.
Finally, it was back to the iconic Tom Tower on St Aldates, housing the famous Old Tom bell. In 2011, CBG worked with the college to locate new hot water distribution plant within a spare corner of the tower, which was last open to the public in the 1930s.
Just time for a quick coffee at another Oxford institution G&D’s café, then on to the next meeting…