The most tip-top… TOPHAT

Associated Lead Mills (ALM) and Jamestown Metals have introduced the TOPHAT guarantee scheme designed to ensure the source and quality of the lead that is installed, stocked or specified.


The TOPHAT scheme covers traceability of product, hallmarking and transparency of source and means that contractors, merchants and architects can benefit jointly from the use of British Standards lead (conforming to BS EN 12588:2006) and the Lead Sheet Association (LSA) guarantee.


As a contractor all you have to do to qualify for the scheme is agree to use Envirolead lead sheet, manufactured exclusively from material recovered from used car batteries from ALM or Jamestown. By doing so you guarantee the material is from a fully documented and trusted source. When Envirolead and Premium roofing products are used together, installers can then offer a 50-year warranty to customers backed and provided by the LSA.

As part of the TOPHAT process ALM and JML will monitor who is registering their works for the guarantee and recommend them to Architects for future projects, offering contractors additional opportunities to benefit from the scheme.

It will also help reduce the number of situations where non-BS EN12588 lead has been used and the cases of fatigue cracking that occur as a result. The British Standards material has a ± 5% limit on its thickness and provides a benchmark for quality against which few would argue.

National Specifications Manager Steve Reynolds explains: “By signing up installers, merchants and architects to the scheme, everyone in the supply chain knows the source and quality of the lead they install, stock and specify. We are now receiving a rapidly increasing number of requests for CPD presentations to architectural practices and, with specification made straightforward through the provision of BIM objects, more than 95% of those who have invited us to do so have signed up to the scheme.

Upon joining the scheme, you’ll need to commit to using the company’s Premium Roofing Products and by doing so you’ll be made known to architects as a means of guaranteeing installation quality. We are also working alongside the Lead Contractors’ Association and the National Federation of Roofing Contractors to promote TOPHAT, not just within the Associations but as part of work to lobby for improved standards within the industry.”

Car batteries recycled to lead
By using Envirolead you ensure that the material specified is clearly defined and, because of the efficiency of the raw material extraction, offers the highest levels of sustainability.

During the manufacturing process the waste car batteries are taken in by the plant, broken and separated. The lead is then sent to the processing plant to be milled into BS EN 12588:06 – the highest quality possible.

Hats off all round!

The TOPHAT lead guarantee scheme covers a range of areas to provide a benchmark of lead quality, including:

• Traceability of product
• Hallmarking
• Transparency of source


The sustainable recycled content and unbroken chain of custody is what makes Envirolead one of the most desirable materials on the market. This is why the TOPHAT initiative was introduced – working together in a positive partnership, guaranteeing the guarantee.