Winners Revealed at the 2019 LRWA Awards

THE WINNERS of the 2019 Liquid Roofing and Waterproofing Association (LRWA) Awards have been crowned at a gala dinner in Liverpool.

More than 300 people attended the sell-out event to celebrate the outstanding workmanship and technical excellence across the liquid roofing and waterproofing sector.

The winning projects were selected from five finalists in four main categories, including Liquid Roofing Project of the Year under 1000m2, Liquid Roofing Project of the Year over 1000m2, Liquid Roofing Project of the Year in a Buried Application, and Liquid Waterproofing Project of the Year.

Each winner was selected by an independent panel, including specifiers and technical experts, with projects judged against strict criteria, including complexity, standard of workmanship, evidence of problem solving and aesthetics.

There were also awards for talented individuals. Ross Smith, Technical Manager at Kemper System, was crowned Trainer of the Year in recognition of his teaching abilities and specialist knowledge, which have been honed throughout a roofing career spanning more than four decades.

The Student of the Year award went to Ryan Kirby from Proctor Roofing for his dedication to training and upskilling, which has seen him rapidly progress up the ranks to site supervisor.

A Special Recognition Award was also presented to Chris Bussens, for his contribution to the liquid roofing and waterproofing industry. Chris joined the LRWA in 2013 and was instrumental in developing the Basic Competency Programme (BCP). Following a pilot in 2014, involving LRWA manufacturer members, the initiative received substantial funding from the CITB and evolved into a pioneering training project for all roofing disciplines. Spanning three years, the BCP has helped thousands of operatives to take their first step towards a formal qualification.

Sarah Spink, CEO of the LRWA said, “In our 40th anniversary year, it was fantastic to see such an incredible turnout at the event and to celebrate truly exceptional projects and people.

“The winners are a clear reflection of how much the liquid roofing and waterproofing industry has grown in recent years. Spanning a vast range of sectors, the projects demonstrate how liquids can be effectively used in some of the most challenging environments as well as the impressive skills of contractors working right across the UK.

“With such strong competition this year, we would like to congratulate all those that made the final and thank our sponsors for helping us to make the event another great success.”

The luxury Titanic Hotel in Liverpool played host to the awards, which are now in their third year and were backed by a number of sponsors, including headline supporter Moy Materials in partnership with Enke.

The 2019 winning projects are:

Liquid Roofing Project of the Year <1000m2:

Siobhan Davies Dance Studio: Proteus Waterproofing & Millane Contract Services

Located in London, the Siobhan Davies Dance Studio features a signature undulating roof in its main performance space. Asymmetrical leaping vaults can be seen above the brick building base, reflecting the sweeping arms of the dancers below.

The waterproofing membrane on this impressive roof had reached the end of its serviceable life, so a survey was carried out to establish an alternative solution. A polyurethane liquid waterproofing solution was specified to provide a highly durable roof covering. Another major benefit was that it could be quickly, safely and effectively applied onto the unconventional roof shape, which includes dome-like features and awkward detailing,

The low-odour system also minimised disruption for the dance studio, which remained open throughout the works, as well as a neighbouring school.


Liquid Roofing Project of the Year >1000m2 (sponsored by Kingspan):

Southern Water: Polyroof & Williams Roofing Contractors

This project required roofs to be refurbished across eight buildings on the site. As a live ‘Clean Water’ environment site, the contractor was faced with many challenges to avoid the risk of potential contamination and keep the operatives safe over the open water.

Additional protection was installed above the water tanks to ensure no concrete particles entered the water and to help the dissipation of moisture under one of the roof areas, mushroom vents were installed.

The roofing solution included the use of a translucent liquid waterproofing system for a building with a concrete rooflight and glazing blocks. This enabled light to pass through the membrane into the building’s interior of the building.

The liquid roofing solutions also enabled complex details to be waterproofed including through-wall outlets.

The project resulted in full encapsulation of the roof areas, without a single detail left exposed to the elements.


Liquid Roofing Project of the Year in a Buried Application (sponsored by Polyfoam XPS):

Wellington Street Offices: Bauder & Protech (Leeds)

As part of the refurbishment of these city centre offices, an existing podium car park was transformed into a landscaped deck using a hot melt system.

This complex project presented numerous installation challenges. As the existing slab wasn’t level prior to beginning the waterproofing, it had to be flooded with hot melt to ensure an even surface. Existing planters and upstand details also had to be overlaid, outlets replaced, and the system fully sealed.

Located in a busy city centre, the site had restricted access and contractors also had to manage the movement of other trades people across their working area. To overcome this issue, the waterproofing was continuously tested and re-patched. All results were reported to the client to keep them fully informed.


Liquid Waterproofing Project of the Year:

The Water Gardens: Makers Construction & Triflex

The Water Gardens were originally built in the 1960s. Featuring trees, vegetation and large shallow pools, the gardens are suspended over a basement car park. The structure had been susceptible to leaks which had caused damage to vehicles parked underneath and resulted in the car park becoming redundant.

This project required the 5,800 sq. m Water Gardens to be leak free. All soil and vegetation was removed and more than 500 tonnes of silt and mud taken out of the ponds in restricted conditions. Safe removal of fish from the ponds was required which then had to be re-introduced into improved water once work was complete.

All areas, including ponds and planters, were cleaned to allow the concrete to be inspected and repairs carried out before application of the fully reinforced liquid waterproofing membrane. The former car park’s original concrete structure was also repaired and waterproofed with a cold-applied liquid that will last for 20 years.


Trainer of the Year

ROSS SMITH, Technical Manager at Kemper System

With more than 40 years’ experience of the liquid roofing market, Ross has spent his whole career in roofing. Throughout this time, he has helped to specify and apply millions of square metres of liquid waterproofing, not just in the UK, but around the world.

With vast industry knowledge, Ross has been managing Kemper System’s training courses for more than a decade, helping over 1,000 people improve their liquid waterproofing skills. He has also dedicated a considerable amount of his time to supporting the LRWA by promoting and delivering the association’s specialist contractor training.

Known for his professionalism and innate ability to make people smile, Ross consistently receives positive feedback from those he trains, and his sessions are always well attended and highly regarded.

Reinforcing why Ross deserves to win this award, Victoria Ramwell from Kemper System said: “Ross’s knowledge of roofing, including liquid waterproofing systems, is second to none and he’s always on hand to share his advice.

“His courses combine both classroom theory and practical sessions, where the tricks and tips he has developed over his career are passed on to attendees.  Ross is a very well respected and talented trainer with the knack of making people feel at ease.”


Student of the Year

RYAN KIRBY, Proctor Roofing

Ryan began working for Proctor Roofing in 2015 as a labourer and thanks to his commitment to training and learning, has rapidly progressed into a senior role.

From the outset, he showed a determination to succeed and enhance his knowledge of the liquid roofing and waterproofing sector. This led to Ryan achieving his Level 2 NVQ diploma in Waterproof Membrane Roofing Systems earlier this year as well as a certificate from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) for successfully completing the Specialist Applied-Skills programme (SAP) in liquid roofing and waterproofing.

As a result of his hard work and dedication, he is now a site supervisor at Proctor Roofing, holds a skilled worker CSCS card and is a very valued member of the team.

Explaining what sets Ryan apart, Wayne Proctor said: “From day one, Ryan showed huge potential. Not only was he a natural team player but had the drive to progress, proactively seeking opportunities to train and improve his skills.

“His passion for his work and professional attitude, quickly earnt the respect of all his colleagues, including senior management. Following the award of his NVQ Level 2, this led to a very well-deserved promotion.”

Special Recognition Award


Given by the LRWA board, this honorary award recognises an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the liquid roofing and waterproofing industry. It was presented to Chris Bussens for developing the first Basic Competency Programme (BCP).

Chris, who has been working in the roofing and cladding industry for more than four decades, was responsible for implementing the BCP pilot in 2014. An industry first, the programme formally recognises the vital contribution that manufacturers play in training the roofing industry.

Comprising specialist product training, the BCP covers topics such as installation, project planning, health, safety and welfare. After successfully completing a test at the end of the programme, roofers can apply for a red, experienced worker CSCS card and go on to achieve a nationally recognised roofing NVQ qualification.

The one-year BCP pilot initially just involved LRWA manufacturer members. Following its success, it was developed by the Roofing Industry Alliance and received significant funding from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB). This led to industry collaboration, involving a further three roofing federations, including the Single Ply Roofing Association (SPRA), the National Federation of Roofing Contractors (NFRC), and the Federation of Traditional Metal Roofing Contractors (FTMRC).

With clear benefits for roofing operatives, manufacturers and contractors, the BCP evolved into an industry-wide training initiative that has spanned three years, supported many roofing disciplines, and received a £2.94m investment. Additionally, the funding led to the ‘train the trainer’ initiative, helping training managers to gain the Level 3 Education and Training Award.

In the liquid roofing and waterproofing sector, 14 manufacturers got involved in the BCP and by 2018, 1,000 candidates had completed the programme, a target which was hit a year ahead of schedule. By August 2019, more than 2,000 operatives in liquids had completed the programme.

Although funding for the BCP came to an end in August 2019, the training continues with many manufacturers still promoting and delivering the course.

Commenting on the award, Gary Hemmings, LRWA Director, said: “The impact of the BCP has been enormous and this simply would not have been possible without Chris and his knowledge, skills and dedication.

“Not only has the project helped thousands of roofers take their first steps towards achieving an NVQ Level 2 qualification, but for the first time, helped to formally recognise manufacturers’ training.

“This is very well-deserved award that recognises Chris’s instrumental role in developing one of the roofing industry’s most successful and pioneering training programmes.”




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