Fenestration rises to the challenge

Glass Times editor Nathan Bushell discovers an industry ready for the challenges created by the latest national lockdown.

Happy new year!

I spent all of yesterday talking to numerous companies and canvassing opinion regarding the latest lockdown rules, and I found myself thinking of a quote by Benjamin Franklin: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Like everyone else, I sat down to listen to the prime minister Boris Johnson explain the latest restrictions to movement on Monday night. And like everyone else, I tried to calculate the potential cost to our industry.

The fact that the government singled out construction and manufacturing as industries that can remain open, and ones where people are allowed to leave home to travel to, is a huge relief and will help to avoid the weeks of uncertainty that we experienced in April and May last year.

The government has also said that tradespeople are allowed in people’s homes, providing guidance so that work can be carried out safely.

Furthermore, all companies up and down the supply chain have gone to great lengths to ensure that their places of work are safe – often going beyond the guidelines laid out by the government.

And new ways of working have been adopted, such as the widespread use of remote-selling software.

Last year was challenging. However, I saw an industry respond in a way that I would never have thought possible, and I am certain that this new lockdown will be managed with preparedness and maturity.

Finally, I received some excellent responses from companies to a short questionnaire that I sent out on social media yesterday. I’ve referenced as much as I could on this week’s lead story and I will publish as many as I can in full in the February issue of Glass Times.

But I will leave you with a quote from Quickslide’s Sandra Berg: “It’s absolutely vital that we do not rest on our laurels and leave the future of our industry and the UK economy to hope.”