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It is a time of great opportunity for tradesmen and women. The property market is in freefall and so people look to improve rather than move. Although 60% of Brits plan home improvements this year*, regulations ensure that the layperson can no longer tinker with whatever he fancies. The competent, talented and qualified tradesperson should thrive.

Television, however, has painted a dim picture of cowboy builders and unqualified trades people ready to destroy our homes and leave work unfinished and lives ruined. There is another way. Cheapest isn’t necessarily best and word of mouth recommendation from people who’ve had first-hand experience of quality workmanship is the way to go. 67% of consumers polled by MyHammer said reputation was the most important factor when choosing a tradesperson. and HSS Hire are launching the 2011 Tradesperson of the Year competition to champion the great and the good amongst Britain’s tradespeople. The April/May bank holiday period is typically a bumper period of work for most tradespeople, delivering up two prime opportunities for work, back to back. This year these bank holidays join together, and with the addition of the Royal Wedding, the fear is that people will take a few days extra holiday and either go away or descend in to a second festive period with no thought to those Spring home improvements so important to the tradesperson’s livelihood.

According to John Russell, chief builder for Cowboy Builders, "It's important that we recognise that quality tradesmen and women not only improve the reputation of the industry but also give customers the opportunity to select someone who is highly skilled and trained for the job."

The competition launches on 9th April. Trades people can nominate themselves or customers can put forward their favourites, then it’s all down to votes. To sign up visit The winner will receive a bumper prize including £1000 to spend in HSS Hire, a year’s membership to MyHammer, a year’s supply of Gorilla Glue and Gorilla Tape, a fishing weekend at The Beachbrow Hotel, a Veebeam (PC to TV streaming gadget), Kärcher DIY Multi-Purpose Vac, plus the ‘Tradesperson of the Year 2011’ logo to use on all promotional material. allows you to obtain quotes for jobs in your home from qualified tradesmen. Once work is complete you review the project on the site and make it easier for others to identify honest and competent builders, plumbers, electricians and other tradesmen through your recommendations’.

HSS Hire is the UK's original tool and equipment company with over 230 branches nationwide and a commitment to making hire easy for businesses of all sizes.

- Ends -

Notes to Editors:

*Survey of 2000 women was undertaken by online research specialists OnePoll in March 2011.

About MyHammer

MyHammer operates in the United Kingdom, Germany, the United States and Austria. With over 6 million searches per month, MyHammer is the number 1 website for finding tradesmen and service providers in Europe. At MyHammer, both private and commercial customers can get quotes quickly and easily from tradesmen, builders and service providers that have been rated by previous customers.

The spectrum of jobs ranges from building work to general repairs, renovation to removals and babysitting to teaching. Customers can post a short description of their job online and receive multiple quotes from qualified and rated tradesman, or alternatively, search for specific tradesmen according to qualifications, area of expertise and locality. We verify all of our tradesmen’s personal details and qualifications and once a job has been completed both parties can rate each other. MyHammer is headquartered in Berlin, Germany and has 70 employees.

For further information go to

About HSS Hire

HSS Hire Service Group ( is a UK-based, national supplier of tool and equipment hire and related services. It has been serving big businesses, trade and DIY customers since 1957. The company also runs a dedicated training division and offers a range of innovative hire related services including HSS LiveHire, HSS Outsource and HSS Onsite.

Operating under the banner of HSS Hire, the group has an established nationwide network of 232 locations including a number of Supercentres with extended opening hours. Operated using a ‘hub and spoke’ approach and supported by a vast fleet of liveried vehicles, the network ensures the best possible national distribution and, therefore, customer service.

In 2009 HSS launched a revolutionary online management system, HSS LiveHire, which allows its customers real time tracking and visibility of equipment they have on hire. This is a central part of a commitment to being industry pioneers – championing transparency, integrity and ‘the true cost of hire’.

HSS was both the Hire Association Europe and Contract Journal Hire Company of the Year 2009. In 2010 it was awarded the HAE’s ‘Excellence in Customer Care award and Highly Commended by the European Rental Association. HSS Hire is ISO9000, ISO14001, OHSAS18001 and SAFE-Hire certified and holds Investors in People status as well as a 4 star British Safety Award.

For press information, images and interviews please contact Linda Cohen or Rachel Corcoran at Lily Pad PR on 0844 35 11 484 07791 110906 07791 110910

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