Sadly; The Hedgemaster garden podium step are no longer available; The UK manufacturers have ceased trading

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New on-line staging brackets to join staging systems together to make infinitely long runs

third ladder bracket

staging brackets

These are available from here. http://www.austinwhiteladders.co.uk/ladder-safety-equipment.htm#staging

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all terrain trestle system New all terrain staging system, new product promotion £450.00 + VAT, this includes 2 trestles, 3.0m staging board and handrail safety system.  Available now, on-line here. http://www.austinwhiteladders.co.uk/ladder-safety-equipment.htm#staging

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Youngman BoSS

Not really Austin White Ladders Ltd. news, but bigger ladder news this month is that Youngman have accepted an offer to be brought out by the American ladder giant Werner co, not sure how this will effect people in the real world yet.

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Timber trade steps

Please note that from June 2014 we will not be stocking the trade pattern TPS (timber platform steps) or TSB (timber swing back steps). They are no longer a core item and prices will be subject to individual quotations.

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Phone support

There will be limited phone support this Friday 4th April 2014. Email support will function as usual. Sorry for the inconvenience

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Ladder Classifications

Guide to different ladders and their duty ratings

In the UK (and most of Europe), ladders and step ladders are manufactured in three grades or classifications according to their strength and durability. All three grades fall within the scope of BS 2037, the British standard for aluminium ladders, and bear the Kitemark. They are produced and classified according to the type of work they will be used for.

A few products are still outside of a classification but this is being worked on right now. Where a certification does not exist we supply ladders made in the same way as the certified option. Where there is a current European certification we will supply such a certified ladder and NOT an imported copy that is not certified.

Part of the regulations for classified ladders is that the ladder / step ladder will have a label on the side of it stating its classification – saying the label fell off etc. is not acceptable.

Class 1 – Industrial

Heavy duty industrial, regular use,unknown conditions of use. The maximum weight of user and tools i.e. the duty rating, is 130kg (175Kg static), that’s around 20st 6lbs.

BS/EN 131 (previously Class 2) – Light Trades

Low frequency use and less onerous conditions of use. The duty rating being 115kg, (150Kg static loading)that’s 18st.

Class 3 – Domestic

Occasional, light use only with a maximum duty rating of 95kg which is just 14st 13lbs. – Class 3 tends to be only used in the UK, and is almost extinct in most parts of Europe, the reason being is that often 95Kg is too low a rating, as a “man and hammer / drill) will often exceed 95Kg in weight, so we would always recommend a class 2 EN131 ladder, even if its just for domestic use.

It is also important to ensure that the ladder is at least long enough for the job, and the length should exceed the “step-off” height by at least 1.1m

Some HSE executives will still recommend or insist on class 1 industrial grade ladders as its better to be safe than sorry; IF the ladder is over rated it will not matter, however if you have a ladder with a lower duty rating than needed then you will be committing a criminal offence and could be liable, so if in any doubt we recommend using the highest rating possible (class 1 industrial use).

This information was taken from the main AUSTIN WHITE LADDERS LTD. website

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How to inspect ladders for safe use

Ladder inspection is important

We often get asked about the recommended way to inspect a ladder, check for damage and ensure that it is safe to use, so here is  a condensed, practical guide.

There are hundreds of people injured or killed in falls from ladders every year, most of which could be avoided with very little effort or cost, here’s how.

A visual inspection should be carried out every time before a ladder or step ladder is used. A formal inspection should be carried out on a regular basis and the ladder “tagged” to say that it has been checked and is safe to use, where a fault has been found the ladder should be marked, or tagged to indicate that it is NOT safe to use. You can simply use a parcel label to indicate the ladder is fit (or unfit) for purpose, but a better idea is to use a ladder inspection tag, these are permanent and show when a ladder was last inspected, when it is due to be inspected again and whether or not the ladder is considered safe to use.

Tag is permanently fitted (1), date ladder was inspected, and next inspection date marked on tag (2) IF there is a fault the tag is turned round to show that the ladder has been condemned and consider unsafe for use (3)

You can buy the item for professional / commercial use here


Ladder Stiles

The ladder stiles should not be dented, bent or have deep scratches that could harm the ladders integrity, any damage is a sign that the ladder has had a trauma and may mean that the ladder has been weaken and may bend or snap when in use.

Ladder Feet

The ladder should have a full set of feet, without cracks or missing parts, if a foot is missing it should be replaced before the ladder is used. Ladder feet can be replaced for a few pounds each, we supply replacement feet for our ladders. The ladder should be stable and level when rested on the ground. There are some after sale generic feet that can replace missing feet and increase the ladders grip on the ground, these are usually a suction cup, or sometimes have a flat base. These are available HERE


Kingfeet Suction cup, articulated feet shown here

Ladder rungs or treads

Missing, dented, bent, or splintered rungs or treads will weaken the ladder and make it unfit for purpose.

Ladder platforms

Check that the platform sits properly when step ladders are open, check that the platform support arm is not bent or missing, check that the rivets are intact, not split or missing; these are important to the ladders integrity.

Handrails and side braces

These should be securely fixed to the side of the ladder or steps, should be straight with no signs of fatigue.


Ladders should be free from paint, they can hide defects, wooden ladders can be treated with a clear varnish for protection, but it general it is strongle reccomended that ladders are not painted

Extension guides

The extension guides at the top of the ladder are a critical part of the ladders function, they should be fixed firmly in place without missing bolts or rivets, they should grip the other ladder sections firmly, but not too tight, tight enough to stop the other sections popping out. Some deploy a plastic guide too, to enable friction reduction, these are part of the good fit and should be present if provided by the manufacturer.

Safe working loads

Ensure that the ladder has a label attached confirming that it conforms to UK / EU regulations on certifications, the label is part of the certification and must be attached, there are several different categories for working loads, more information on that here


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Telephone support

We are sorry for the shortage of available phone lines yesterday 02/04/13, this was due to a technical blip; the missed calls that we are aware of have now been contacted, if we were not aware of you call please call again today. We are sorry for the inconvenience.

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Sherpascopic’s summer promotion

Sherpascopic’s 106 and 177 reduced by over £125, see / buy them here http://shop.austinwhiteladders.co.uk/21-podium-step-ladders#.UVv3g6KPPVs

See the Sherpascopic special offer here.



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