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Think Air Partners with Thriving Hive This World Bee Day...

We’re buzzing about Think Air’s new collaboration with UK honeybee experts, Thriving Hive.  Thriving Hive is a Coventry University project that will see scientists and beekeepers work together to help bees in the UK to thrive in their environment. Honeybees today face many threats to their environment – and air pollution could be a key contributor.   We don’t yet know how much air quality impacts our bees – but Think Air is about to help change this.   Up until now, air pollution has been the subject of little research, but our collaboration will help us top understand the direct effect of toxic air (especially fine particulate matter, or PM2.5) on honeybee health and productivity.   How?   Well, it’s not an easy task, but Think Air will be working with Thriving Hive to map particulate presence across the UK. The project will help us to monitor – and better understand – the impact of small particle air pollution on the honeybees, their hives, and their hive products.   60 beekeepers from various locations across the West Midlands will take part in the project. Each one will receive a Think Air sensor to record local air pollution. They’ll then work together with Thriving Hive’s team of scientists to analyse results and put measures in place that will help UK honeybees thrive.   We’ll be reporting back with the latest buzz on this project when it gets under way.   You can find out more about our cutting-edge Think Air sensor and software network here, or by dropping us a

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Building A Team That Drives Innovation: A Think Purple Approach...

How we’ve created a community of the right people, doing the right roles, to transform client ideas into remarkable, results-driven creations.   Innovation. Not a week goes by without the buzzword popping up somewhere. From LinkedIn posts to strategy meetings to the mainstream evening news, innovation is having more than it’s fifteen minutes.   But behind the most successful innovations is a remarkable team. A team that brings together the essential roles, responsibilities, and blue sky thinking an innovation needs to succeed.   And that’s exactly what our Think Purple approach achieves.   Because anyone can have an idea. It’s what you do with that idea that makes all the difference.   Innovation is about transforming ideas into concepts, concepts into prototypes, and prototypes into products that change the way businesses operate – for the better.   Here at Vindico, we call it: Thinking Purple.   It means asking better questions to deliver better outcomes. And it’s more than just a catchy slogan. It’s our ethos, our mission, it underpins everything we do, and it’s what our clients know and trust.   Our Think Purple approach doesn’t just apply to our clients – we use it to shape everything we do inside the Vindico brand, too – including selecting the right people, for the right roles.   An innovation dream team (or, as we call them, ‘Purple Vinjas’) is a key to our framework.   We’ve created an award-winning community of Wales’ finest creative thinkers, engineers, and technologists to deliver real innovation, at pace.   Innovation also means staying ahead of wider trends – and a shift to digital adoption has seen Vindico add three new web dev experts to our team in the last few weeks alone.   It’s this forward-thinking, agile approach that lets us continue to design – and implement – the technologies that transform inspiring scenarios client success stories like no other.   Because, amidst the creativity, innovation is ultimately about results – and our Purple Vinjas have a track record of working together to turn exciting topics into concrete, commercial results.   And we do it all while predicting – and continually innovating – solutions that help our clients to navigate the ever-changing tech landscape.   Today’s environment can be challenging, but innovation (there we go with that buzzword again) is key for succeeding in challenging times. And we’ve got the team who can help you implement the solutions you need to adapt, grow, and thrive in today’s changing environment.   Want to start turning your ideas into tangible results that will give your brand a competitive edge? Drop our Purple Vinjas a

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Ella Adoo-Kissi-Debrah: Why We Must Take Air Pollution Seriously...

A coroner has called for a change in the law after air pollution led to the death of nine-year-old Ella Adoo-Kissi-Debrah. Vindico’s Head of R&D, Professor Paul Lewis explains why this is the right decision. According to the BBC, the inquest found air pollution “made a material contribution” to her death, adding that there’s “no safe level of particulate matter”. And we couldn’t agree more. Ella is the first person in the UK to have air pollution listed as the cause of death on their death certificate. And it’s a trend we could see escalate if we continue to produce – and breathe in – particulate matter (PM2.5) at our current levels. But the report is a new milestone in the drive to get the UK government to adopt the WHO recommendation of a PM2.5 annual limit value of 10ug/m3. It means that some areas of the UK could be in breach of legislation in the future, and legal action could be taken against governments – in a similar way to what we have seen for NO2 over the last few years. The major area of concern from this report though is that people don’t know where to find information on air pollution. The adverse impacts of air pollution on patients are also not being communicated properly by carers and healthcare providers. We know that this needs to change, and we’re actively promoting air quality measuring and awareness through our Think Air network. Think Air is the only project in the UK to take on the challenge of understanding background and wide range air quality on this scale, and it’s changing the way we understand and measure the impact of toxic air – particularly PM2.5 – at a local level. Today, Think Air is on track to being the largest live air quality sensor network in Wales – and the largest in the UK by the end of 2021. To find out more about Think Air – and how your business can benefit – drop us

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Business SWAPP: Return of Hospitality and Corporate Events Sees New Demand For Our COVID Safety App...

SWAPP Lite was originally developed for sporting arenas, but as society begins to open up – and small gatherings resume – there’s even more need for our track and trace technology.   Our SWAPP Lite app was originally developed for the for the Welsh Rugby Union back in 2020. It successfully allowed both the Autumn Internationals and the Six Nations Championship to go ahead at their home stadiums during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now it’s helping venues of all sizes to do the same beyond sport. SWAPP Lite is already used at Principality Stadium, Manchester Motorpoint Arena, the Arms Park, and Parc Y Scarlets. And, as we gradually ease lockdown rules, the safety app is quickly becoming an asset for corporate venues, hospitality, and events. But how does SWAPP Lite work? SWAPP (Safe Workplace APP) is a bespoke version of a technology we created for Transport for Wales. It features a handy QR code scanner, valuable track and trace, and pre-registration features. It also monitors standards and accreditations to make sure that all members of staff and contractors are up-to-date and meet the current required guidelines. Our developers are continually enhancing SWAPP Lite’s safety features. Area Access Control, fire roll call, and a new in / out board dashboard are among the latest app updates. We – like you – are eagerly waiting for crowds and gathering to return. We also know that it’s important for venues to optimise revenue streams by reintroducing corporate events, conferences, and general venue hire that’s safe and compliant. Adopting SWAPP Lite means that – along with the venue itself – any businesses or organisations hiring the venue will also be able to benefit from its safety features. For venues – it’s an attractive selling point that will put organisers, and attendees at ease. For event organisers – it provides an added dimension of safety and offers a clear vision of who is on site, and who’s compliant. Could your venue, team, or event benefit from our SWAPP Lite safety app? Drop us a line to find out how we can help you operate smoothly and safely both during and after

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Vindico Have Been Shortlisted for a Small Award!...

Vindico have been chosen as a finalist for Britain’s best environmentally sustainable business. Our commitment to air quality in the UK through our self-funded Think Air network means we’ve been shortlisted for the UK’s best environmentally sustainable small business at this year’s Small Awards. Think Air is on track to being the largest live air quality sensor network in the UK. It’s already helping to gather the data and insights we need to raise awareness and understanding of air quality and Pm2.5 levels across the country. And it’s also supported by Welsh organisations including Scarlets Rugby, Cardiff Devils, Niche, and Zip World. “It’s the only project in the UK to take on the challenge of understanding background and wide range air quality on this scale, and it’s changing the way we understand and measure the impact of toxic air at a local level,” Says Vindico MD, Jo Polson. Think Air’s success means that Vindico has been chosen as one of five finalists for the new ‘Net Hero’ Small Award, launched in the run-up to this November’s UN Climate Change Conference (COP26), to recognise small firms demonstrating exceptional commitment to environmental sustainability. Now in its fifth year, the Small Awards is a nationwide search for the smallest and greatest firms in the UK, across all sectors. It’s organised annually by Small Business Britain, which champions, inspires and accelerates small businesses in the UK. With eleven unique categories, the Small Awards celebrate the dynamism of the UK’s small business sector, across everything from longstanding family businesses and innovation-led start-ups, to social enterprise champions. “After what has been a difficult year for the whole small business community, it has been inspirational to hear about phenomenal small businesses across the UK,” said Michelle Ovens CBE, Founder of Small Business Britain. “The Small Awards exist to celebrate and champion the amazing contribution of fantastic small firms like Vindico. We received a record number of applications this year, with an incredibly high standard of entry, so all of the small businesses shortlisted should be rightly proud of this achievement.” Judged by a panel of leading enterprise experts, the winners of all award categories, along with the overall winner of Small Business of the Year, will be announced on 13th

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Paul Lewis On Air Pollutants and How They Can Impact on Health in Wales...

Vindico’s Head of R&D reveals the air pollutants of concern to health in Wales at today’s Welsh Government Event. Our air pollution expert, Paul Lewis, was at the Welsh Government’s online event today to reveal the main air pollutants we need to know about. As one of the panel of experts covering the topic of air pollution in Wales, Paul revealed some harsh truths and surprising facts about air pollutants and our health in Wales. He also outlined the proposed guidance for both businesses and individuals. Breaking it down into gases and particles, Paul singled out NO2 and PM2.5 as the two air pollutants we need to be most concerned about. “Most people think of air pollution as coming from transport. But we’re less aware of our own personal behaviours at home and at work,” insists Paul. Although 40% of NO2 and a third of PM2.5 comes from industry, and traffic – particularly in urban areas – is a cause for concern, emissions continue to fall annually. Which is where our personal habits come in. Mainly in the form of wood burning. Domestic and small-scale burning now account for over 40% of PM2.5 in the UK – and it’s a problem. As Paul puts it: “One of the most damaging pollutants, in terms of our health, is fine particulate matter, which is often referred to as PM2.5, and our research reinforces the need to revise PM2.5 limit values and targets as soon as possible.” And air pollution is not just a local issue. Paul points out that our habits can impact air quality many miles away. “What’s more, the PM2.5 that we breathe might often come from many miles away, which means we cannot rely solely on modelled data. There needs to be widespread monitoring of this pollutant to get a full understanding of where it comes from and the harm it causes.” That’s where our Think Air initiative comes in. “Think Air is proving that effective air quality sensor networks don’t have to be costly. It’s also providing us with meaningful data and insights which, led by ergonomics, can be used to develop longer term behavioural change methods that will ultimately benefit the long-term health of people across Wales and the UK.” Originally launched in 2019, Think Air’s sensor network is already live across Wales. It’s helping to gather the data and insights we need to raise awareness and understanding of air quality and Pm2.5 levels across the country. We’ve expanded the network with the support of Welsh organisations including Niche, Scarlets Rugby, Cardiff Devils, and – most recently – Zip World, who are installing Think Air sensors at all five of their sites across Wales. It’s the only project in the UK to take on the challenge of understanding background and wide range air quality on this scale, and it’s changing the way we understand and measure the impact of toxic air at a local level. Today, Think Air is on track to being the largest live air quality sensor network in Wales – and the largest in the UK by the end of 2021. To find out more about Think Air – and how your business can benefit – drop us a line today.

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Your Wood Burning Stove And Air Pollution: 4 Things You Need To Know...

How much does your fashionable wood burning stove contribute to air particle pollution? The result of that ‘homely feel’ may surprise you, says Professor Paul Lewis.   Recent government data shows that domestic wood burning has become the single biggest source of small particle air pollution in the UK. Although trendy wood burning stoves are used by just 8% of the UK population, they produce three times more small particle air pollution than road traffic. Why is it such a big deal? Tiny particle pollution is harmful to our health as it can enter the bloodstream and negatively impact everything from our lungs to our eyes. The government isn’t planning a ban on wood burners just yet, but a ban on the retail sale of wet wood will come into force on 1st May 2021. Bags of house coal will also be banned from 1st May 2021. These changes are the first such restrictions since the clean air acts of the 1950s. A domestic wood burning stove can triple the level of harmful pollution inside the home. It also accounts for 38% of the pollution particles under 2.5 microns in size (PM2.5). Despite this, a new Government report reveals that the most common reason for using a wood burner is for aesthetic reasons. “Thanks to illegal levels of nitrogen dioxide stealing the headlines in recent times, most people think of traffic and industry when they think of air pollution,” says says our Head of R&D Paul Lewis. “But, most will be surprised to hear that wood burners cause more than three times as much PM2.5 than traffic across the UK. “The new report reveals that people burn wood at home mainly for aesthetic reasons, with little appreciation of how much they contribute to air pollution throughout their neighbourhood and beyond. “Governments are aware that banning wood burners is controversial so they’re actively looking at how new regulations on the type of wood burnt, such as dryer logs, can reduce PM2.5.”   4 key take-aways: The retail sale of wet wood and house coal will be banned from 1st May 2021 in the UK   Domestic wood burners produce three times more small particle air pollution than road traffic   Domestic wood burning can triple the level of harmful pollution inside the home   Wood burning stoves account for 38% of the pollution particles under 2.5 microns in size (PM2.5)   Although we seek that cosy look or hygge feel in the home, it can come at a price. So, if you’re lighting up that fire, make sure you’re thinking of the impact, using dry wood only and being a good neighbour. You can find out more about Think Air – our clean air initiative –

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Creating a Digital Presence For Charities in Wales...

Having a digital presence has never been so important for charities and third sector organisations. Here’s how we’re helping. A charity, voluntary, or a community group’s website has never been so important – especially in these socially distanced times. Luckily, we know a thing or two about creating a digital presence for charities. And we’re continuing to use our tech savvy for good in 2021. Our Purple Vinjas are known for making all singing, all dancing websites with UX in mind. But we’re less known for donating our skills to causes and initiatives we support. That’s right, we at Vindico donate our skills to causes and initiatives we support. And we do this by increasing the digital presence of charities throughout the year – year in, year out. “It’s an important part of our ethos,” says Vindico MD, Jo. “We never turn down an opportunity to help someone if it’s possible. Our ability to support important causes has grown with our capabilities. What started as simple tech support for initiatives that we support has grown to full websites and even applications. Speaking of which, we’ve donated several websites to worthy charities, non-profits and causes over the years. Our most recent websites include Welsh Rugby Former Players Association, Burry Port RNLI, and volunteer group S.A.N. Our first donation of 2021 is a website for Your Black Dog – a Welsh non-profit that’s tackling mental health. “Your Black Dog is a wonderful example of a cause we’re particularly passionate about,” says Jo. “Mental health is a hot topic thanks to the sudden change, social isolation, unemployment, and general unrest that the COVID-19 Pandemic has brought. We as a team couldn’t be prouder to work with founders Marc and Andrew on this new project. “What’s cool about the team at Vindico is, not only do they take their time to get to know what you are trying to achieve, but they do so whilst investing their time getting to know you as a person too,” says Your Black Dog Co-Founder Andrew McCarthy. “They’ve been accessible virtually 24/7, really interested in what we are trying to achieve, and have become true partners in what we are going to deliver.” “There may be certain limitations in what we can offer,” adds Jo, “but we are always looking for the next worthwhile cause to support.” Do you have a worthwhile cause in need of better digital presence? We’d love to hear from you. You can drop us a line and tell us about your cause by emailing us at

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Toxic Air: The Importance Of Air Quality For Our Health...

A new report from the British Lung Foundation (BLF) and Asthma UK says that about six million people aged over 65 in England are at high risk of health issues such as lung damage and asthma attacks. The culprit? Toxic air. The report finds that older people, those with lung disease, and the most vulnerable to the effects of pollution are often the most exposed to toxic air. Air quality is an area that we’re particularly passionate here at Vindico. It’s also the reason why we created our Think Air initiative. Led by our Head of R&D, Paul Lewis, Think Air is helping to provide a more accurate picture of  background air pollution levels. This, in turn, helps make local air pollution-reducing initiatives more achievable. “This latest report on toxic air is further evidence of the impacts of particulates on the health of more vulnerable people in society,” says Paul Lewis. “It reinforces the need to revise PM2.5 limit values and targets as soon as possible. It’s alarming when you see the figures for care homes, GP practices, and hospitals. The potential exposure of the elderly and patients to PM2.5 levels above the limits recommended by the WHO is also alarming. “I echo Professor Alistair Lewis’ comments. The PM2.5 that we breathe might often come from many miles away. This is one reason why we can’t rely solely on modelled data. There needs to be widespread monitoring of this pollutant to get a full understanding of where it comes from and the harm it causes.” And that’s exactly what we’re hoping to achieve with Think Air. It’s already on track to being the largest live Air Quality sensor network in Wales. We’ve also started to expand to counties across the border in England, too. Think Air is changing the way we measure, monitor, raise awareness of air quality. It’s also driving positive change, which, in the wake of this new report exposing the impact of toxic air on our health, it’s more essential than ever.   You can find out more about Think Air and our commitment to better

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Two More Welsh Rugby Teams Adopt SWAPP Lite...

The Cardiff Blues and the Scarlets join the Welsh Rugby Union by using our SWAPP Lite app for their upcoming home games. This follows the WRU’s successful rollout of SWAPP Lite. It’s been used at the Autumn Internationals at Parc Y Scarlets, and at this year’s Six Nations home games. You can find out how the WRU are using SWAPP Lite this Six Nations here. But back to the story. Even with Welsh sport being played behind closed doors, there’s still lots of people to keep safe – from the teams and staff to medics, contractors and the media. And SWAPP Lite will be helping the Cardiff Blues and Scarlets do just that. The safety app is a bespoke version of the original SWAPP app we created for Transport for Wales. It features a handy QR code scanner, valuable track and trace, and pre-registration features. It also has the ability to monitor standards and accreditations. This lets organisations make sure that all members of staff and contractors are up-to-date and meet current required guidelines. As our MD Jo puts it: “When we were developing SWAPP Lite with Welsh rugby in mind, it was important for us to not just focus on the new problems the pandemic has brought us. We also wanted to fix some old problems, too. “We’re actively using these new challenges as a catalyst for positive change. We’re delivering something that will continue to add value, even once restrictions are lifted.” In true #ThinkPurple fashion, we’re always thinking ahead. Additional features and enhancements are already being added to SWAPP Lite. “We’ve recently added a fire register and have replaced the sign in/out book,” says Jo. “This provides the venue with simple contact management for staff and contractors, all while ensuring a safer working environment that’s fit for today’s challenges. “It creates a fantastic platform for further development, integration and utility. It’s also making the most of the changing state that we’ve all been forced to adopt. “When life gives us lemons, we make some pretty cool lemonade!” Want to turn lemons into lemonade? Or – in this instance – help your organisation adapt and navigate these changing times? Drop us a line to find out how SWAPP Lit can help you and your workplace operate smoothly and safely both during and after

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