Byworth Boilers win Queens Award


BOAS Handbook V6


Cochran - Case Studies


Boiler Operation & Safety Awareness Hotel Seminars


SAACKE Programme of Regional Conferences


The Use of Biomass - General Paper


Byworth Boilers win prestigious Award


CEA Yearbook 2016-2017


TV Crew & 'The Vital Spark' Steam Puffer Visit Cochran


'It's those damn bean counters again


Byworth Boilers win Queens Award

Byworth Receives a Queen’s Award for Enterprise

Byworth Boilers is proud to have been named a winner of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Innovation.

The UK’s highest accolade for business success, the award was received in recognition of Unity, Byworth’s revolutionary boiler house control system. The first of its kind on the market, Unity has achieved outstanding results in its respective field of innovation.

The prestigious awards are made annually by HM The Queen, and are only given for the highest levels of excellence demonstrated in each category. They are judged following a rigorous and highly competitive entry process.

Rewriting the rules

Byworth were seeking an innovative product to solve the problem in the market. Unity was first touted as an idea in 2007 to the existing controls’ manufacturers; but after years of getting nowhere trying to persuade them to take on the development, Byworth felt so strongly that the industry was missing the key technological advancement, it appointed its own team to develop the idea into the finished product. After a two-year development plan, Unity was born.

Encourage and nurture innovation

Numerous departments at Byworth have had and continue to have a role in its development, contributing to its success. Unity as a physical entity is not merely enough, without the pioneering capabilities from the people ‘on the ground’ it would not sustain its competitive edge.

How has Unity changed the industry?

The innovative product controls and manages a boiler house as one entity rather than relying on various third party control systems; creating a considerably more efficient and configurable boiler house for the customer.

Data is accessible from the cloud; enabling plant managers to optimise the relationship between boiler and process by understanding when large peaks and troughs are happening.

The intelligent use of data allows site managers and operators to react more quickly to plant conditions, reducing the number of start-stop cycles, fuel and water usage.

Essentially, having better control makes the customers' plant safer and more efficient, as well as reducing emissions. 


Jura, in a world of it's own - Find out more about Byworths journey to this famous distilllery

Discover what the Yorkshireman Steam Boiler can do for your business with Byworth Boilers






BOAS Handbook V6


We have made a few amendments to the BOAS Handbook over recent months.

Devised in consultation with the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), the insurance industry, manufacturers of boilers, burners and associated equipment, and employers, with the practical support of The Carbon Trust.

The CEA has devised a scheme recognised by industry, insurers and HSE, which provides a comprehensive qualification for operators and managers of industrial and commercial boiler plant.

Since the demise of the former City & Guilds boiler operative qualification, there has been no nationally-recognised qualification. The CEA seeks to fill that gap.

The syllabus has been devised in consultation with HSE, the insurers, trainers and employers. It is based on the former City & Guilds syllabus, but updated and expanded to include, not only safe operation, but energy efficiency, environmental control, and the latest developments in automatic and remote control.

The qualification can be obtained in two alternative ways:

  1. By attendance on an approved training course.
  2. By application for assessment for those who can demonstrate 
    sufficient experience.

In cases where a candidate attends an approved training course, the assessment will be carried out within the course. Where the experienced candidate just applies for assessment, he will be required to attend a one-day assessment course, which will include oral and written processes.

In all cases the candidates will be issued with log books where they will be required to record all working operations of the boiler plant under their control over a period of three months, at which time an ‘on site’ interview will be conducted.

The qualification is available in various categories as follows:

  1. Hot water boilers
  2. Steam boilers without steam raising in tubes (
  3. Steam boilers with steam raising in tubes (

Assessment at the higher category does not offer a presumption of competence at a lower category.


Cochran - Case Studies

The Central Campus Energy Solution

Turnkey Case Study (read here)

Having previously supplied Aberdeen Royal Infirmary with steam boilers back in the 1986, Cochran were contracted to provide the main steam generation equipment for the new Foresterhill Health Campus Energy Centre. Commissioned in June, the plant was operational by August 2012.


Increasing Efficiency and Reducing Fuel Costs

Efficiency Case Study (read here)

BillerudKornas Beetham at Milnthorpe in Cumbria is a world leader in the manufacture of speciality papers for healthcare and food packaging markets. Recently BillerudKornas made the decision to replace their existing 40-year-old boilers in order to reduce the fuel and maintenance costs.


Evolve Polymers
Recycling Waste Heat into Valuable Energy

Heat Recovery Case Study (read here)

Cochran recently installed a Heat Recovery Boiler system for Evolve Polymers at Hemswell in Lincolnshire. The project which made use of exhaust heat from two gas engines was completed in association weith leading generator hire company, Aggreko. 


Boiler Operation & Safety Awareness Hotel Seminars

Cochran Ltd is pleased to announce the popular 1 day Boiler Operation and Safety Awareness hotel seminar at various locations throughout 2016.

Supported by the CEA the seminar has been designed for personnel responsible for attending to Boiler Plants on a regular or intermittent basis such as Plant Managers, Security Guards and Shift Operatives.  It also benefits personnel responsible for matters relating to Health and Safety and indeed anyone requiring a comprehensive overview of the efficient operation of the Boiler Plant.



Tuesday 7th June 2016

Mercure Burton Upon Trent Newton Park Hotel

Newton Solney


DE15 0SS

Tuesday 16th August 2016

Mercure Livingston

Almond View


EH54 6QB

Tuesday 4th October 2016

Mercure Wetherby

Leeds Road


LS22 5HE


The seminar designed to provide a basic understanding of the everyday operation of boiler and burner plants.  The seminar consists of a series of illustrated talks and demonstrations, with course members being encouraged to question and actively participate.

The seminar costs £375.00 plus VAT, per person, and includes all course literature, morning coffee, buffet lunch and afternoon tea and Certificate of Attendance and it covers the following topics: 

  • Boiler Fittings
  • Combustion and the use of Various Boiler Fuels
  •  Boiler Construction
  • Essential Routines, Daily and Weekly Checks
  • Basic Water Treatment
  • Boiler House Health and Safety
  • Actions in Emergencies
  • Question and answer session


To book call Cochran Training Department on 01461 202111.  Further information on Cochran training courses are available at


SAACKE Programme of Regional Conferences

The CEA are happy to support its members, SAACKE Combustion Services, Enersol Flomar - M&M training and Torque Engineering who are hosting this Energy, Emissions and Efficiency Conference, along with SSE Enterprise looking at Micro CHP. 

Below is the SAACKE 2016 conference programme, please book directly with SAACKE using the flyer booking form or contacting via

This conference will also give you a flavour of the more detailed CEA two day conference workshops to be held at Crewe Hall, Cheshire 14 - 16th June and the Cambridge Belfry Hotel, Cambridge 12 - 14th July, covering in more depth your legal obligations when operating combustion plant and carrying out Technical Boilerhouse Risk Assessment.

For more information please contact or see our events page.

The CEA have organised a third day at each venue, Crewe Hall and the Cambridge Belfry with topics covered:

  • Crewe Hall - a mix of MCPD updates, Industrial Gas Accreditation (I-GAS) and boiler water treatment (BG04). 
  • Cambridge Belfry hotel - Biomass Health & Safety Awareness after recent boiler explosions. It is designed for Owners, Installers, Operators and Managers of biomass systems. 

See SAACKE Programme of Regional Conferences Here


The Use of Biomass - General Paper



A Summary Paper - COSHH Hazards arising with the storage of wood fuel

Author: A J Nicol BSc CEng MEI


It is appropriate to note that the comminution of aged timber will produce dust of all sizes including tiny particulate regardless of fuel specification. That dust will contain or have attached any of the residues of any chemical treatments etc and will because of its size remain airborne for long periods, post shredding and movement. Inhalation will present a COSHH risk (particularly with organo-chlorides) and will, very likely, with accumulation present an explosion risk. The risk of explosion will be most acute with enclosure e.g. above conveyors that are enclosed (reference the OSB investigation into the Imperial sugar explosion). Where wood is treated or where wood is wet and rotting wood is stored there is also the inherent risk of fungal growth and the attendant COSHH risk.

The use of Biomass has increased significantly over the last ten years. This increase is in large part due to a perception that biomass is green, clean and sustainable. These conceptions are in part driven by market pressure and in part underwritten with Government commercial interventions. The rapid development and deployment of biomass has alarmingly resulted in the un-informed design, review, installation and operation of allied storage and combustion technologies (with attendant fatality and injury)

Read the full paper here


The research and information and in particular the  formulation and execution of large scale trials for CO production from wood chip is very limited. There is sufficient evidence to show that large scale storage of any organic material but in particular soft wood lumber or chip will produce CO and generate and oxygen depleted high CO2 atmosphere. Where headspace ratio is small that will result in unacceptable CO levels.

Entry to a space storing large quantities of organic materials requires special and sensible consideration and precaution.

My consideration is based on this very limited data and analysis available for fresh wood chip. In the context of auto oxidative CO formation at least this will provide some safety margin because there is research available which suggests that the fatty content of wood reduces with age and accordingly the propensity to generate CO reduces.

Keeping the wood very dry will hamper biological degradations with attendant, CO, Methane and CO2 production, and for that reason ahigh fuel turnover and no dead spaces are preferable.

Ventilation must assure mixing or else stratification or binding may occur, creating pockets or layers of high CO concentration.

The detection systems must at least detect at the level where any human operator might be. Additional low and high level alarms might be used to provided a robust alarm system and warning of over pile CO build up and stratification.

Operational and maintenance activity that requires entry to a large store will merit special precaution. e.g. a risk assessed entry, COSHH test, extraction and evacuation procedures (written and tested) - and published emergency procedures to mitigate the effects of any Hazard being realised e.g. initial healthcare procedures for persons suspected of carbon monoxide poisoning or Oxygen deficiency.


Byworth Boilers win prestigious Award


Byworth Wins Prestigious Award at the House of Lords…

On the 22nd October, Byworth travelled down to London to attend the David Gunn Memorial Lecture & Lord Ezra Awards 2015 at the House of Lords.

The event was organised by the Combustion Engineering Association (CEA), a registered educational charity aimed at improving the understanding and development of the combustion industry. Originally formed in 1933, it advocates science and best practice of combustion and engineering, with a long history of promoting efficiency in the utilisation of all fuel types.

The event began with a fantastic lecture by Dr Stephen Payne OBE, the chief naval architect of the Queen Mary 2 (QM2) - Cunard's flagship ocean liner, which entered service in 2004. 

The entertaining anecdotes throughout the lecture included his childhood story of a single-minded determination to achieve a boyhood dream – to build a liner that would be reminiscent of the Queen Elizabeth 2 (QM2’s predecessor). What was perhaps more inspiring was his memories of a supportive teacher he had throughout his education and career. It was said teacher that persuaded Stephen to ‘follow his dreams’ which led him down his successful path. They both stayed in touch throughout Stephen’s career and unfortunately the teacher passed away just before the QM2 was first to set sail. A touching end to the story concluded when Stephen mentioned there was a plaque dedicated to his teacher hidden on the QM2 and he hopes one day it will be found and the inspirational story will be exposed.


Stephen Payne commands the attention of the audience with his entertaining lecture

The events of the afternoon turned to recognising the efforts of people within the industry. The pinnacle of which was the Lord Derek Ezra Award 2015 for achievement in areas of higher efficiency, safety and lower emissions in industrial combustion. 

It was then that Derry Carr, Chairman of the Association, announced Byworth Boilers had won this prestigious award for its Unity control system. Pete Waterman OBE, the Association’s President presented the award to Byworth which was accepted by the system’s creator, Jason Atkinson and Technical Director, Adrian Rhodes.





CEA Yearbook 2016-2017

The Combustion Engineering Association New Year book 2016/2017 is now available to read in the resource section of the website.


TV Crew & 'The Vital Spark' Steam Puffer Visit Cochran

Cochran Plays Host to 'The Vital Spark' as TV Company Documents Restoration of Famous Steam Puffer, the VIC 27 or ‘Auld Reekie’.

This vessel is possibly best known for her starring role as the Vital Spark in the 1994 TV series ‘The Tales of Para Handy’. Following her television debut, the puffer was left to rust and rot in Ardrishaig until 2008 when a team of puffer enthusiasts secured ownership of the vessel and rescued her from an imminent future on the scrapheap. From Ardrishaig, the engineless, leaky vessel was towed through the Crinan canal to Crinan Boatyard where her restoration would take place.


Since then, the restoration of the vessel has been filmed by television production company Caledonia TV and a 3-part series will be shown on the BBC later in the year. The camera crew visited Cochran along with John Dunlop, Managing Director of Crinan Boatyard, to film the latest progress on the boiler build.

The original Coal Fired Cochran Boiler, manufactured in 1943, was brought back to our factory for inspection but after thorough examination was condemned. However, Cochran have been tasked with the manufacture of a new, more efficient coal fired boiler replacement, using the old boiler as a template. The new boiler, rated at 1000kg/hr has a working pressure of 10 bar g. The boatyard will take delivery of the new boiler in the summer and thereafter, smoke will rise from the funnel of ‘Auld Reekie’ once again. 


Coal Fired Boiler positioned aboard the 'Vital Spark' Steam Puffer

Further to our news story in April 2015, the restoration of the famous Steam Puffer vessel named VIC 27 or 'Auld Reekie', (possibly best known as the 'Vital Spark' in the 1990's TV series) continues apace. Last week the Managing Director of the Crinan Boat Yard, John Dunlop along with a film crew from Caledonia TV, visited Cochran to document the Coal Fired Boiler's despatch for a 3-part BBC series following this restoration project.

The original Cochran boiler was manufactured over 70 years ago but was condemned after inspection and Cochran were tasked to manufacture a new more efficient replacement using the old shell as a template. 

The following day at the beautiful Crinan Boatyard, Lochgilphead, Argyll and Bute the boiler was expertly lifted in to position aboard the VIC27. The photos show this was a highly skilled task with extremely limited space in the old boiler house.  

Find out more about the restoration project here


'It's those damn bean counters again

Byworth’s resident bean counter, Rachel Westerman discusses why capital projects should be looked at over the longer term rather than just focusing on the initial outlay of money.



Rachel Westerman, Byworth Boilers’ Financial Director

“Recently we invested in new welding machinery for the factory. Rather than just looking at the capital costs, we based the investment on the running costs (including electricity, welding consumables and labour). Buying more efficient and up-to-date machinery can cost a substantial amount but the project payback was definitely worth the additional costs. It will only take us 3 years to recover the investment, and this does not take into account the reduced labour time which can now be put to better use making more fuel efficient boilers.

“Although looking at projects in this way takes longer and in some cases is more difficult to quantify, it does work out better for all stakeholders to calculate the overall investment before signing that purchase order.

“Our Yorkshireman 2 boiler is expensive when compared to other boilers (even our own Yorkshireman) but the savings from lower running costs should outweigh the additional capital expenditure in a relatively short space of time. Fuel is set to start rising again in the near future so this needs to be taken into account when considering your investment.

“It is disappointing when the sales team report back to me that although we are favoured by the engineers, once it gets passed on to the purchasing and accounts people, it often becomes more about  the initial capital cost than the lifetime cost.

“I urge other ‘bean counters’ like me to consider the longer term investment (and reduced operating costs) rather than just what is in the capital budget for the year.”



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