The Building Envelope


James Hardie created fibre cement and thanks to our extensive research and development we are now on our seventh generation of fibre cement technology.  We are the world’s leading manufacturer of high-performance Fibre Cement products, which are a composite material made of cement, reinforced with cellulose fibres.

We are a trusted innovator and global industry leader, and our products enable endless possibilities for designing exceptional buildings whilst also delivering protection and long-lasting beauty.

solar PV

The UK’s net zero strategy that includes ambitious carbon reduction targets in both the new Part L and the Future Homes Standard, as well as the recent announcement of the Government’s Heat and Buildings Strategy, and the associated £800 million Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, means the spotlight is on those responsible for ensuring improved energy performance in the nation’s homes, discusses Stuart Nicholson, Roof Systems Director at Marley. 

high rise

New hub helps specifiers construct safe, comfortable and sustainable homes

Predictions suggest that an additional 9.3 million people will move to the UK’s cities by 20221, driving the trend for vertical construction to create more space for homes. In response, ROCKWOOL has developed a new high rise hub designed to support the specification of non-combustible stone wool insulation solutions for residential projects – ultimately helping specifiers to meet stringent fire safety, thermal and acoustic requirements while constructing high rise properties.
A central feature of the new hub is ROCKWOOL for High Rise Residential Projects, a comprehensive guide which explores the role of tall buildings in our society and focuses on key high rise topics including fire safety, thermal comfort, energy efficiency, acoustic performance and sustainability. Containing specific building regulations guidance as well as stone wool insulation case studies, advice and best practice, ROCKWOOL for High Rise Residential Projects is the go-to resource for high rise developers and specifiers.



With increasing pressure to specify building systems offering clearly defined sustainability, the use of materials that embody recycling as an inherent feature is becoming increasingly significant. Aluminium as a key building component is now used across a wide range of sectors and, as a matter of interest, is still very much the most valuable item in our recycling collection. From an emissions perspective, the use of pre and post-use aluminium greatly reduces energy consumption and adds tangible value to the economics of production. To put this into perspective, it saves around 95% of the energy consumed in the 'primary' production process.
For those specifying metal window and door systems, there is, therefore, a clear incentive to use a raw material that can be reused on an infinite basis. In terms of enabling building designs to achieve the highest level of BREEAM certification, aluminium can also provide tangible benefits when calculating an asset’s environmental, social and economic sustainability through the use of standards developed by BRE. In addition, it enhances specific aspects of technical performance such as thermal, acoustic and energy efficiency.


homes and communities

With COVID-19 changing the way that people live and work, new research from Marley has revealed what people value most about their homes and communities in post-lockdown Britain.  Here, Stuart Nicholson, talks us through the findings and the implications for those designing and specifying new homes.

2020 was a year like no other, with COVID restrictions, furlough and health concerns forcing large numbers of people to spend long periods of time in their homes.  The house had to become the gym, the office, the school, and the relaxation space, causing people to re-evaluate where they live, work and how they spend their time.


new bricks

Despite the challenges, the construction sector faces the Crest team have been designing and producing some new brick types which have recently been added to the range. Crest has one of the best collections of bricks available in the UK and is delighted to offer Merchants, distributors and housebuilders 3 new clay facing bricks.

The Oast House Restoration is beautifully crafted, designed by the Crest team this is a quite stunning multi-coloured tumbled brick, perfect for rural, traditional and prestige type properties. These bricks are a mix of reds, browns with white highlights scattered throughout and black highlights featured on selected bricks to add an ‘aged’ appearance. Its rustic brick colours would work well with a selection of our roof tiles including the Wolds Classic Clay Roof Pantile, ‘Classic’ is a mix of different colours & finishes.


passive fire protection

Siderise has launched a suite of new passive fire protection products specifically engineered for masonry facades, making it easy for specifiers and developers to choose the right protection for their buildings.