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Ask Midland Lead: “Is Midland Lead’s machine cast lead covered under the new NHBC Standards?”

Midland Lead Q & A: How can I best store lead sheet?

Ask Midland Lead

Each month we answer your product and industry questions. This month you asked:“Is Midland Lead’s machine cast lead covered under the new NHBC Standards?”

Issued late last year and effective as of 1 January 2016, this year’s new NHBC Standards has seen a few changes; enhanced topic guidance, improved navigation and even a new NHBC 3D Viewer app, to name a few. NHBC’s acceptance of appropriate materials for weathering, however, has not significantly changed and Midland Lead’s machine cast lead does indeed remain acceptable.

While it’s clear the updated edition – available to view at, page 18 of section 7.2 – identifies a range of suitable materials for flashings, a misunderstanding within the industry emerged late last year, suggesting the new NHBC Standards tells housebuilders to explicitly use BSEN12588 Rolled Lead Sheet in any new home registered with NHBC.

The authority wrote to us confirming that where no definitive standard exists or is referenced, NHBC requires alternative proprietary products to meet Technical Requirement R3, meaning it must have a valid third party technical accreditation from an appropriate approvals body.

For Midland Lead’s machine cast lead – which can never qualify for BSEN12588 as it is only applicable to lead manufactured through a milling process – this comes in the form of a British Board of Agrément (BBA) certificate.

In light of the misunderstanding, we’ve been working to raise awareness of NHBC’s acceptable materials for weathering and clear up any confusion in the industry. This work saw us feature in RCI’s online news, Roofzine, Building Talk and Roofing Today, to name a few.

We also published a letter from NHBC on our website, which reaffirms NHBC’s acceptance of BBA-accredited machine cast lead, and published an information leaflet on the new 2016 Standards.