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NHBC celebrates 75 years of raising house-building standards to protect homeowners

NHBC last week celebrated a special milestone at its Knowlhill head office, marking 75 years of working to improve the build standard of new homes in the UK with a birthday event for staff attended by local dignitaries.

Last Thursday (17 November) colleagues of NHBC, the UK's leading warranty and insurance provider and standards setter for new-build homes, raised a toast to the company's achievements. They were joined by NHBC's new Chair, Isabel Hudson, Julia Upton, Chief Executive of the MK Community Foundation, and Simon Green, Housing Manager of MK YMCA. The event included speeches, a historical video retrospective, and a cake cutting ceremony with the cake donated to MKCF's charitable 'Surving Winter' fuel-poverty campaign. After the event, attendees were able to meet Iain Stewart, MP for MK South.

You can watch some highlights of the event below:


NHBC's new Chair, Isabel Hudson, said:

"I joined NHBC as a Board member in June and, since then, one of the things I have been particularly struck by in meeting NHBC people is the sense of pride they have in NHBC's achievements over the past 75 years. The company plays a unique role in protecting homeowners, supporting house builders and working alongside government and others to shape housing policy.

"NHBC has a considerable number of strengths as a company, including its comprehensive site inspections, its quality control of new build houses, and its work to support the drive towards low-carbon, energy-efficient living. I'll be very proud to step into the shoes of NHBC's outgoing Chairman, Sir John Carter, as we start the journey through our next 75 years."

NHBC Chief Executive, Imtiaz Farookhi, said:

"NHBC has had a long association with Milton Keynes in several different office locations over the years. Today we call Knowlhill our home and the centre of our national operations.

"Seventy-five years is milestone worth celebrating, as we have much to be proud of, from creating the first standard construction specification for new build housing back in 1936, to establishing our new home warranties as the benchmark for consumer protection in the house-building industry. I'm confident that we can look forward to another 75 years of continued success."

Over the last three quarters of a century, NHBC has become the leading warranty and insurance provider and standards setter for UK housebuilding, defining best practice in new home construction. Its holistic industry involvement helps ensure best practice in all areas, ultimately minimising the risk to buyers of new homes by providing quality control during preparation and construction, and a post-purchase safety net. NHBC's world-leading model has been copied around the globe.

Julia Upton, Chief Executive of MK Community Foundation, said:

"I was thrilled to represent MK Community Foundation at NHBC's birthday event, to congratulate its staff on its 75th anniversary. Last week, we launched our new Surviving Winter campaign, and we want to raise funds to help the most vulnerable and older people who face the very real issue this winter of whether they can afford to heat or eat. I am delighted that NHBC are supporting our campaign."

NHBC, the UK's leading warranty and insurance provider for new UK homes, was created 75 years ago, with 17 November marking the date of its incorporation in 1936. It was set up to combat unsatisfactory building practices, prevalent following slum clearances by the government in the inter-war years. NHBC created the first standard construction specification for new-build homes, backed by the operating of a register of approved house-builders, comprehensive inspections at key points of the building process which helped ensure quality, and certification of new homes as suitable for use.

NHBC was originally governed by a cross-industry group, representing an important voluntary venture into self-regulation and consumer protection by the house-building industry, but became entirely governmentally and financially independent in 1955. With nearly eight million homes given warranty since 1936, NHBC Buildmark insurance policies now cover over 80 percent of new homes built in the UK, and have covered over a third of the UK's current housing stock at some point, giving homeowners assurance and redress if things go wrong.

News Date: 22/11/11