About Us

About Barbour

Barbour EHS offers seven products across Health and Safety, Environment and Energy, Estates and Facilities Management, International Service, Supplementary Modules and eLearning.

Features include:

  • Document Library – Source information from HSE, British standards and trade associations, all in one place
  • Summaries and Director Briefings – Information you need delivered clearly and concisely by expert consultants, including one page summaries targeted at directors’ requirements.
  • Technical Guides, Forms and Checklists – Tools to aid the auditing process as ‘proof of compliance’
  • Employee Factsheets – Giving concise information on managing everyday work tasks
  • Toolbox Talks – A year’s worth of workforce training, with fully editable presentations and handouts
  • Legal Register Facility – Create a live on-line legal register allowing a simple way to stay up to date with changes in legislation and management systems
  • Legislations and Consultation Updates – Receive email alerts when documents are updated
  • Bookmarking Tool – Quick, simple access to the documents you use regularly
  • ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 and ISO 50001 – Certification Gap Analysis Tools and systems support
  • Monthly Webinars – Keep CPD up to date with regular webinars on legislative updates and best practice guidance

Barbour forms a key part of UBM’s Occupational Safety & Health division and serves the industry alongside other specialist products, including SHP Online, Safety & Health Expo, Facilities Show, Field Service Management Expo, IFSEC International and FIREX International.

The Barbour Story

Barbour is the oldest and best known provider of specialist information services to industry professionals. The main objective of the company has always been to provide professionals with the information they need to do the best job for their customers.

Whilst Barbour (originally known as Barbour Index) was officially formed in 1957, it has much earlier beginnings in a company called Architects Classifile, which started as early as 1941 in order to answer the desperate need for information faced by wartime architects and engineers in London.

In 1957, Bobby Barbour (brother to Patrick Barbour) formed a company called Architects Specifile. The company was based on collecting manufacturers’ trade catalogues and storing them in a filing cabinet.  The catalogues were delivered by ladies on bicycles who visited the architects, in central London only.

In 1958, Patrick Barbour joined the company for two years, which is when Barbour Index was formed. Shortly after this, Bobby left the company and Patrick took over. The rest, as they say, is history.

By the mid 1960’s the bicycles had been replaced by red minis, driven by young ladies in mini-skirts who were employed to maintain the tailor-made Barbour Index Product Library services. Microfiche was introduced in the late 1970s to provide comprehensive technical and product information.

Through the next two decades, Barbour Index developed into the principal supplier of technical and manufacturers’ product data to the country’s construction industry. It floated on the Stock Exchange in 1987. The Health and Safety Microfile was launched in 1980, followed by Environmental Health, Fire and Safety, Food Safety, Environmental, Water and Trading Standards.

In 1997, Health & Safety Professional was launched, followed by Food Safety Professional, Environmental Professional and Trading Standards Professional – firstly as a CD based service, followed shortly by an online product that has grown into the service offered by Barbour today.

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