At the end of September HETAS opened an additional direct route for applicants to register for its Approved Chimney Sweep scheme.
The new direct registration route has been set up to recognise professional chimney sweeps that have chosen not to join an association or organisation, providing them with the opportunity to gain Approved Chimney Sweep status directly with HETAS.
The scheme has been well received to date with a number of applicants now lined up for their first inspections.
HETAS branded chimney sweeping certificate have now been made available in the HETAS Shop (loign required). Alternatively give the team a call on 01684 278170. The HETAS chimney sweep certificates are entirely voluntary and are available to all HETAS Approved Chimney Sweeps. Our first technical group for Approved Chimney Sweeps is also being lined up.
On Tuesday 15 October Government introduced what it describes as a landmark Bill “to tackle the biggest environmental priorities of our time, signalling a historic step change in the way we protect and enhance our precious natural environment.
The Bill will ensure that Environmental principles will be enshrined in law and measures will be introduced to improve air and water quality, tackle plastic pollution and restore habitats so plants and wildlife can thrive.
Legislation will also create, legally-binding environmental improvement targets. A new independent Office for Environmental Protection will be established to scrutinise environmental policy and law, investigate complaints and take enforcement action against public authorities, if necessary, to uphold our environmental standards.
This Bill paves the way for better enforcement of offences like creating smoke in a smoke control area and the sale of poor wood fuel and smoky mineral fuels. If the Bill goes through Parliament as it is drafted, there will be a lot of work to do to change the way we operate e.g. only the cleanest fuels will be available for purchase and only the cleanest appliances.
The role of sweeps
On the Environment Bill and chimney sweep Bruce Allen comments:
We see the draft Environment Bill as another step in the right direction. Like us, government shares priorities to address the problems of poor fuel and improve understanding among fuel consumers. Chimney sweeps, in particular, were identified as a powerful opportunity for making information available to householders, helping them burn fuels at home in an environmentally responsible way.
In November HETAS intends to run it’s first chimney sweep technical group. The group would operate alongside the HETAS Technical Committee which is chaired by HETAS Technical Standards Manager Calvin May. Calvin also chairs the British Standards RHE/28 and is involved in our standards work across the UK and Europe.
Such groups provide our stakeholders the ideal opportunity to engage with HETAS and provide feedback that HETAS can use to develop further and also pass on to government. A similar group operates for installers and influences the Bulletins, Technical Notes and feedback on Approved Documents and Building Regulations. This group is well attended by registered installers.
If you are an Approved Chimney Sweep with HETAS and would like to be involved in such a group you can express your interest in attending to email@example.com. We do appreciate that November is a busy time for chimney sweeps, there will be future groups into 2020 and the group will become a regular fixture in the same vein as the core Technical Committee.