UltraScape BS 7533 steps up to the paving challenge in Apia, Samoa

UltraScape’s BS 7533 Mortar Paving System has been used as part of the upgrade of Apia city centre high street.


Apia is the capital and the largest city of Samoa. The city is located on the central north coast of Upolu, Samoa’s second largest island. Apia is situated on a natural harbour at the mouth of the Vaisigano River.

As part of a regeneration programme, the Samoa Government released funds to rejuvenate the capital’s main high street. Zheng Construction was engaged as the contractor for the project and New Zealand UltraScape distributor, Horizon International Limited, advised and provided the UltraScape mortar system for the upgrade of the 560m² of 80mm stone paving required for the project.


The challenge

Climate and weather were a critical considerations for the project, Apia features a hot and humid climate, however, the climate is not equatorial because of the trade winds and there are also a few cyclones, so any mortar solution would need to be robust enough to survive these changes in conditions.

The costal location of Apia was also a consideration, the paving and mortar needed to be capable of withstanding saltwater and precipitation.

Apia still has some of its early, wooden, colonial buildings which remain scattered around the city, it was therefore important that the integrity of these buildings and their environment was retained.


The solution

The selected UltraScape BS 7533 compliant Mortar Paving System comprised of pro-bed bedding mortar, pro-prime slurry primer and flowpoint smooth in natural grey grout.

Pre-blended for ease of use, pro-bed can be laid from 10mm – 75mm, is shrinkage compensated and can be opened to foot traffic in just 12 hours, which allowed the contractor to complete the project in good time.

Formulated to provide an exceptional bond between the paving element and pro-bed, pro-prime slurry primer eliminated potential costly failures caused by general wear and tear and heavy load bearing.

Ideal for large scale projects, flowpoint smooth grout was used in natural grey to sympathetically tie in with the selected paving.


The results

Tom Abbott, the design lead for Beca said: ”We are very pleased with UltraScape’s BS 7533 Mortar Paving System. It was easy to use and quick setting. The construction life of 40 years was particularly important to the end client as was the system’s value for money”

UltraScape’s Mortar Paving System is available throughout New Zealand through Horizon International Limited. To contact Horizon International please call 0800 682 745 or visit horizoninternational.co.nz.

For further information on UltraScape’s BS 7533 compliant system, please contact Instarmac’s International Sales Team by calling +44 (0) 1827 254402 or emailing international@instarmac.com.


Instarmac continues to be recognised as a centre of excellence for wellbeing in the workplace

There are few employers that would disagree that a workforce in a good state of health and wellbeing contributes to enhanced business outcomes and employers should take action to improve the health and well-being of their workforce. Aside from the mutually beneficial impact it could have for employees and the business, it’s the right thing for enterprises in the twenty-first century to do for their people and for wider society. *

Employee wellbeing encompasses all the physical, psychological, social and financial aspects of working life. Positive wellbeing can allow people to perform to their fullest potential, thriving inside and outside the workplace.

It is no surprise that 83% of workers feel that their wellbeing influences their productivity and a 1/3 of workers have stated wellbeing as a contributing factor for leaving a job.**

Great Place to Work®, in partnership with the Guardian and Sunday Telegraph, celebrates trust and engagement within an organisation. The Excellence in Wellbeing award is awarded to companies who are committed to creating a happier and healthier work environment.

These values lie at the heart of Instarmac and they are proud to announce that they have retained the Great Place to Work® Excellence in Wellbeing award for 2020.

This Autumn every Instarmac employee was given the opportunity to complete the Great Place to Work Trust Index® Survey – a questionnaire that seeks employees experiences and views. To measure the levels of wellbeing in an organisation, all employees were asked questions about their fulfilment at work, work-life balance, work environment, financial security, mental and physical health and inter-personal relationships. These responses were then analysed to determine whether or not the company really is committed to their employee’s wellbeing.

Instarmac sored highly in financial security, with 95% of employees feeling financial secure in the organisation and its future. 91% of employees felt that Instarmac provides a good working environment and promotes health and wellbeing in the workplace. Instarmac also scored highly in interpersonal relationships, which is the basic human need to feel connected to and care about by others, particularly colleagues and line managers.

When asked the Question: Is there anything unique or unusual about this organisation that makes it a great place to work? This is what employees said…

‘Instarmac is a great place to work for many reasons. The company provides a wealth of opportunities for each team member to make a positive and lasting change – we are encouraged to challenge the status quo, drive change and continually improve. We hold Kaizens to deliver these changes and make a difference. Bright ideas that are implemented are rewarded with a cash incentive. The list of benefits is extensive, 29 days holiday plus the 8 bank holidays, life cover of £120,000, performance and profit related pay – I’ve received at least 8% of my gross salary in bonus every year, excellent pension, private medial cover, dental cover. Use of 3 holiday homes, one in Tenerife and two in Cornwall with fuel / flight allowances paid too! We are rewarded for our attendance – each year those staff that have not had a day off work outside of their annual leave, are entered into a prize draw to win holidays, gift experiences, city breaks, personal shoppers. We are regularly treated to lunch. We have had fish and chips, pizzas, noodles, ice cream vans visit our premises. We have free fruit, soft drinks, tea, coffee, biscuits at our disposal every day. There are regular prize draws held to see concerts, sporting events… We work hard, we make a difference, we have fun and we are richly rewarded. Instarmac truly is a great employer. I am very lucky and proud to be part of the business’.

‘The company put a lot into our personal wellbeing, private health care, dental treatment, pension, 3 free to use holiday home with financial contribution to travel for employees and their family members, in the canteens there is fresh fruit, free tea and coffee, tv, pool table, dart board, we have an annual profit related bonus, the company prides itself on its clean up to date modern factory environment. Yes, this is a GREAT PLACE TO WORK’.

For further information on what makes Instarmac a great place to work, please call their experienced team on 01827 254402.

Would you like to join a Great Place to Work and experience the Instarmac Difference? Good news, Instarmac are hiring! View our latest vacancies.


* Source CIPD

**Source PwC

Christmas Opening Hours

During the Christmas period, we will be open on the following days:

  • Monday 23rd December
  • Tuesday 24th December
  • Friday 27th December
  • Monday 30th December
  • Tuesday 31st December

We will be closed on the following days:

  • Wednesday 25th December
  • Thursday 26th December
  • Wednesday 1st January

We will resume normal business hours (8.00am – 5.30pm) from Thursday 2nd January 2020.

We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


UltraTileFix launch training academy days

New training dates for 2020 at the UltraTileFix Academy

Make it a New Year’s resolution to learn a new skill or brush up on the latest tiling techniques

Suitable for both new and experienced contractors, UltraTileFix’s Training Academy Days cover a wide range of topics including subfloor preparation, application of smoothing underlayments and a guide to tiling adhesives.

The UltraTileFix Training Academy Days will be hosted by Alan Collins and Martin Pouncey. Both are expert trainers with over 30 years direct experience and have a wealth of tiling knowledge, having previously worked with well-known manufacturers and brands such as Topps Tiles and Hardie.

Everyone who attends an Academy Training Day will benefit from a free full days training with lunch provided. What’s more, everyone who completes the training will leave with a certificate, goody bag plus £50 worth of UltraTileFix material.

Courses are held at the UltraTileFix state-of-the-art training premises in Tamworth, where attendees will also get to see the innovative manufacturing processes and development behind the UltraTileFix range of products.

Thomas Hatton, T Hatton Maintenance, said: “Alan and Martin are both very knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the company. The hands on approach you get with the products in the training facility is a game changer! Not being stuck in a classroom all day makes a world of difference. I would recommend anyone within the trade to attend the training at Instarmac.”


Places are limited, please call 01827 254449 today to book your FREE place on our courses below.


January 23rd               Application of Smoothing Underlayments


February 27th             Subfloor Preparation


March 26th                   Tiling Techniques Updated


April 23rd                      Tiling Guide to Adhesives


May 28th                      Application of Smoothing Underlayments


June 25th                     Subfloor Preparation


July 23rd                      Tiling Techniques Updated


August 27th                  Tiling Guide to Adhesives


September 24th           Application of Smoothing Underlayments


October 22nd               Subfloor Preparation


November 26th –              Tiling Techniques Updated


December 17th           Tiling Guide to Adhesives



Get floor tiling jobs done in time for the festive season with ProLevel Two

But it’s not just for Christmas! UltraTileFix ProLevel Two can be relied on to last for many years to come too

ProLevel Two is a two part, mid-strength smoothing underlayment that has a set time of just 2.5 hours. It can be tiled within 10 hours, so it’s perfect to help get jobs completed in good time for the upcoming Christmas festivities and gatherings.

Suitable for internal use, ProLevel Two is exceptionally flexible and moisture tolerant, making it the ideal choice for projects with underfloor heating or timber floors as it can tackle tiling tasks of 2-15mm depths. Due to its handy sizing, it is convenient for contractors to carry and with its 1 bag to 1 bottle mixing ratio, it is very simple to blend.

ProLevel Two is a two-component system consisting of a powdered blend of cements, graded fillers and additives, and a pre-gauged polymer liquid. It conforms to CT C25 F5 EN 13813 classification and comes with the UltraTileFix Lifetime Guarantee for peace of mind.

Jason Reid, Brand Manager for UltraTileFix said: “This product is a time saver, which at this time of year is critical for contractors, but not only that, it is a high performance product which can sustain daily trafficking, whether this is foot traffic in a domestic installation or heavy wear and tear in a commercial application. The strength of the product can sustain heavy, large format tiles but also has the flexibility to accommodate movement in the subfloor. And of course, like all the other UltraTileFix products, with the guarantee, it can be trusted to last a lifetime”

For more information on UltraTileFix ProLevel Two visit https://www.instarmac.co.uk/ultratilefix-products/prolevel-two-flexible-two-part-floor-leveller/

About UltraTileFix: UltraTileFix is part of the award-winning Instarmac Group plc. UltraTileFix offer a comprehensive range of ready mixed pastes and cementitious powder wall and floor adhesives, grouts, silicones, ancillary products and levelling compounds


Visit https://www.instarmac.co.uk/ultratilefix for more information


UltraScape’s BS 7533 compliant Mortar Paving System makes a new Whitby attraction ship-shape

UltraScape’s BS 7533 compliant Mortar Paving System has been used as part of the refurbishment of Endeavour Wharf in Whitby, North Yorkshire


Whitby’s latest family tourist attraction is The Endeavour Experience, this visitor experience focuses around the HM Bark Endeavour, the only life size replica of Captain Cook’s ship in the northern hemisphere. This magnificent vessel was recently berthed in Endeavour Wharf to become a fascinating museum.

The challenge

In order to develop the attraction fully, the selected 1500m² dockside area surrounding the ship required paving and cobbles to be reinstated.

A robust, long-life, cost effective mortar solution was required to secure the paved and reclaimed cobbled area, with the capacity to cope with a heavy tourist footfall and saltwater conditions with precipitation. Additionally the area needed to be safe and slip resistant for pedestrians, yet sympathetic to the historic surrounding environment. Speed of application was another key requirement for the project.

The solution

UltraScape’s BS 7533 compliant Mortar Paving System was selected by Scarborough Council for the job, to be laid by Wilf Noble Construction & Plant Hire Ltd. This effective system comprises of pro-bed HS fine bedding mortar, pro-prime slurry primer and flowpoint rapid set flowable grout.

UltraScape pro-Bed HS is a fine bedding mortar formulated to meet and exceed the strict requirements set out in the British Standard. Pre-blended for ease of use, it  can be laid from 10mm – 75mm, is shrinkage compensated and can be opened to foot traffic in just 12 hours, allowing contractors to move on to the next part of the project quickly. It was supplied in 1 ton bulk bags in this instance; perfect for large pedestrianisation projects.

Formulated to provide an exceptional bond between a paving element and pro-bed HSpro-prime slurry primer is formulated to eliminate costly failures caused by general wear and tear and heavy load bearing.

Ideal for large scale projects, flowpoint rapid set flowable grout is available in three varieties and two colours – Charcoal and Natural Grey. With an initial set after just 15 minutes and a walk on time of one hour, flowpoint  provides fast application, cost-effective and robust jointing.

Projects incorporating BS 7533 compliant materials can be relied on to reduce failures and considerable whole life cost savings. All products in UltraScape’s Mortar Paving System have been independently tested by an UKAS accredited laboratory to assess their performance capabilities. This method removes the uncertainty of site batched mortars and offers a minimum construction life of 40 years.

The results

John Woodhead, Northern Area Engineer for Scarborough Borough Council said: “This was the perfect product specified for bedding/grouting the high quality York-stone paving used to repave the entire area adjacent the new “Endeavour Experience”. My desire was to deliver a solution that was sustainable, attractive and long lasting in what is the busiest area in Whitby Town centre, excellent result!”

For further information on UltraScape’s BS 7533 compliant system, please call 01827 254400 or email ultrascape@instarmac.co.uk


Visit https://www.instarmac.co.uk/ultrascape/for more information