Builders' Merchants News
Government seeks 'Fire kills' campaign support from B&Q and Homebase
Published:  03 December, 2010

LONDON: B&Q and Homebase are among companies to be approached by the government to help deliver a fire prevention campaign.

David Watson, the head of marketing overseeing the Department for Communities and Local Government's 'Fire kills' activity, is looking to fill a £3m shortfall in funding that has arisen as a result of the government's spending cuts.

In 2009/10, the campaign was backed by a media spend of £4m, but this has been reduced to less than £1m.

Mr Watson hopes to form and chair a steering board of public, private and voluntary-sector organisations to oversee 'Fire kills'.

The Department is in discussions with convenience-store group Nisa-Today over potential collaboration. It is also due to hold a meeting with battery brand Energizer, and will approach the DIY retailers in the next few weeks. In addition, it will speak to the Association of British Insurers about encouraging the participation of insurance brands.

DIY retailers have previously supported the 'Fire kills' messaging by running promotional weeks in stores, but Watson wants more substantial support with point-of-sale and other customer communication methods.

The department hopes the strategy will bolster its advertising, which has returned after an eight-month hiatus due to the government's freeze on marketing.

The Government's Efficiency and Reform Group has approved spending on the campaign over the rest of the financial year, deeming its aim of reducing house fires and saving lives as 'essential'. It has requested a report on the effectiveness of the campaign.

The 'Fire kills' campaign, by RKCR/Y&R, features print and radio activity but no TV advertising.