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Light Duty

Floor access covers

light duty floor access cover
  • 5000 Series
  • Interior/exterior
  • Hard floor finishes
  • Pedestrian loading

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Medium Duty

Floor access covers

medium duty floor access cover
  • 7500 Series
  • Interior/exterior
  • Hard floor finishes
  • Up to 5 tonne loading

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Heavy Duty

Floor access covers

heavy duty floor access cover
  • 1050 Series
  • Interior/exterior
  • Hard floor finishes
  • Up to 6.5 tonne loading

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Small

Floor access covers

small floor access cover
  • 3500 Series
  • Interior/exterior
  • Hard floor finishes
  • Pedestrian loading

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Wood Floor

Floor access covers

wood floor access cover
  • 2500 Series
  • Interior/exterior
  • Timber floor finishes
  • Pedestrian loading

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Flexible Floor

Floor access covers

flexible floor access cover
  • Visedge Series
  • Interior/exterior
  • Flexible floor finishes
  • Pedestrian loading

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Tread plate

Floor access covers

tread plate floor access cover
  • Interior
  • Plant rooms/basements
  • Pedestrian loading

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Hinged

Floor access covers

hinged floor access cover
  • HSE Series
  • Interior/exterior
  • Hard floor finishes
  • Up to 5 tonne loading

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Accessories

Floor access covers

accessory for floor access cover
  • Access Cover skate
  • Lifting keys
  • Bolts

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Tiled Wall

Access covers

wall access cover suitable for tiled walls
  • Regular or occasional access
  • Concealed slide hinge
  • New build or Refurbs

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Metal Faced

Wall access covers

plastered wall access cover
  • for plastered walls
  • Single or double leaf
  • Fire rating available

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Metal Faced

Ceiling access covers

metal faced ceiling loft access hatch
  • Interior/exterior
  • Hard floor finishes
  • Pedestrian loading

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what does THE SPRING 2017 BUDGET mean for the construction sector?

It is fair to say that the Spring Budget has already been dissected by people who are far more qualified to pass comment than us!  However as a UK based manufacturer supplying the construction industry we wanted to air our thoughts on how we think “spreadsheet Phil’s” budget will impact our business.

The premise


The “last ever” Spring Budget was widely acknowledged as a transitional budget to take us through to the Autumn, by which time the negotiating mandate for Brexit should be in place. According to the Chancellor this budget was designed to put economic stability first and to prepare Britain for a brighter future.

The good news…

Employment is at a record high, the deficit is down by two thirds, real GDP grew by 1.8% in 2016 and construction output was up by 1.5%. So far, so good?

Investment in schools

The Chancellor committed to investing £320 million into the opening of 110 new free schools. It is anticipated that the expansion of the free school programme will create an additional 70,000 school places.  However do not expect to see a rapid rise in the number of new school projects being put out to tender in the next week or so!  The Chancellor confirmed that only 30 of the planned 110 schools will be open by 2020.

A further £260 million has been promised for repairs to existing school buildings.  It is estimated that up to 60% of schools require urgent repairs and many schools built before 1976 require replacement or are suffering major defects. In a recent report the National Audit Office (NAO) warned of the problems that local authorities are facing from deteriorating and potentially unsafe school buildings.

Against this backdrop the decision to invest in more free schools is somewhat controversial!

Putting the politics aside there is no doubt that building new schools and improving the fabric of existing schools through renovation and refurbishment can only be good news for the construction industry.

Investment in T levels

The Chancellor committed £500 million, by September 2022, to the development of ‘T levels’ as a technical alternative to A levels for 16 to 19 year olds. The plan is that over the next 5 years 15 new pathways will be developed in 15 industry sectors where substantial technical training is required to progress into employment. Construction is one of these sectors. The T-levels will be introduced from Autumn 2019. Students will also be able to claim maintenance loans for doing higher-level technical courses at National Colleges and Institutes of Technology.

The not so good news…

Skills shortages
As a part of the supply chain to the construction section we are all too aware of the challenges faced by contractors in acquiring skilled labour. The shortage of skilled labour is an industry wide problem as is existing skilled labour keeping abreast of new technologies and work practices. Whilst the new T-levels will help to address the issue of skills within the sector they will not provide an immediate solution to the problem.

The predictions are that by 2050 there will be a workforce shortfall of 3.1 million due to skills shortages, an aging population and a restrictive migration policy. 30% of the current workforce in construction is over 50 and it is projected that around 700,000 are due to retire in the next ten years. Yet demand for construction continues to increase.

What does it all mean for Howe Green?


We welcome any investment in infrastructure as it will result in new projects for our customers.  Over the years we have supplied access covers for many schools – both new build and refurbishment projects.  A notable project is the eco-friendly St Bernadette’s Primary School in Antonshill near Stenhousemuir in Scotland.

i360 tower Brighton, ukWe supplied 79 Medium Duty 7500 Series access covers to provide easy and safe access to services concealed below a continuous run of 75 metres of floor space.

Howe Green access covers are ideal for a busy school environment where security, safety and hygiene are paramount.

When it comes to learning new skills and working practices we have used technology to our advantage since 1983. Howe Green was founded to address a specific problem in the supermarket sector – access to concealed services under Terrazzo flooring. Over three decades later nothing has changed. We are constantly innovating and delivering bespoke access covers to meet the exact requirements of our customers.

We welcome any investment that will encourage and support more young people to follow a career in construction.  Whilst there is little that can be done to resolve the skills shortage in construction short term we believe that the use of technology and improved working practices can help to improve efficiencies and productivity within the industry.

By developing products that require less manpower manufacturers can play their part in reducing the demands on an overstretched workforce and drive increased productivity.

The Howe Green Access Cover Skate is a prime example of a product that has been developed specifically to save time and manpower. Using a cover skate to remove a heavy access cover reduces the labour requirement from two to one. Take a look at our video to see how it works.

The future


Over 34 years we have seen Chancellors and governments come and go, policies change, exchange rates fluctuate and the economy boom and bust. Since the Brexit Referendum in June 2016 our business has not faltered. In fact in February we had our best month ever! Boring and unimaginative as it might seem, success for us is all about listening to our customers and delivering what they want, when they want it and at the price that we agreed at the outset. Whatever happens in the bigger picture we are confident that this tried and tested approach will continue to serve us well as we head into the “brave new world!”