Billington is certified to the highest level possible, Execution Class 4, which it believes few UK contractors will attain. The ‘CE’ certification demonstrates that Billington have the requisite Factory Production Control system in place and fully operational. This verifies compliance with the detailed requirements of BS EN 1090:2-2008 and EN ISO 3834:2 & 3-2005. Commenting on becoming the first company to commence fabrication of CE Marked Steel Simon Barnes, the Responsible Welding Co-ordinator at Billington said: “We are very pleased to have achieved compliance at this early stage. To have attained the highest level, Execution Class 4, and to have effectively done it twice, across both of our factories some 200 miles apart is a great achievement.” Compliance with the requirements of CE Marking became mandatory across the entire UK in July 2014.
Communaute Europeenne (‘CE’ or ‘European Community’) was introduced in 1995 and CE Marking was created to stimulate the free circulation of goods within the European Community by removing barriers created by differing standards in member states. When applied to any product or equipment indicates that the manufacturer or its authorised EU representative has declared that the product of equipment compiles with all applicable European Directives. Certification became mandatory on 1st July 2014, from which time it became illegal to sell fabricated structural steelwork in the UK or the Republic of Ireland that does not carry the CE Mark. CE Marking is not allowed unless the Factory Production Control (FPC) system under which they are produced has been assessed by a suitable certification body that has been approved to the European Commission. Steelwork has been divided into four categories for certification and a steelwork contractor may not produce steel in a higher category than it is certified. The categories are:
- Execution Class 1 – Farm Buildings
- Execution Class 2 – Buildings
- Execution Class 3 – Bridges
- Execution Class 4 – Special structures (e.g. Power Stations)
Billington Structures, which has been fabricating steel since 1947, demonstrated compliance with the new and more stringent European standards and was awarded the CE Mark accreditation on 1st May 2011.