European concrete pipes and manholes?

A view from inside

Truly momentous things happened in 1989. It was decided [1] that there should be European standards for concrete pipes and ancillaries and that a new working group [2] would do the job. The Construction Products Directive [3] (which everyone calls the "CPD") also appeared in 1989 and people, me included, began rushing around thinking of the hundreds of European Standards ("hENs" as they really are known!) that were going to have to be written. But it wasn't that simple. Member States had until 27 June 1991 to bring the Directive into force (Brussels-speak for "implement"), but when that time came the European Commission hadn't got round to publishing the "interpretative documents" which the Directive said were needed to "give concrete form to" (more Brussels-speak, this time for "explain") its "essential requirements". They were finally published [4] in 1994 and years later I met a man who claimed to have read them.

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