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Harrogate, here we come!

Richard explains why this year he’s feeling even more upbeat than usual about The Flooring Show at Harrogate. The CFA is in Hall B, Stand B14.

I’M really excited about this year’s Flooring Show at Harrogate. Don’t misunderstand me, I always enjoy the show, but this year seems slightly different for a number of reasons.

Firstly, it feels like the first Harrogate for a couple of years that will be back to ‘normal’. I have seen a rise in companies announcing they are exhibiting and there is something of a buzz building. An appetite to do all the things that Harrogate brings. Good business inside and outside of the halls.

Harrogate 2021 was excellent, but we were all still working around restrictions, and I for one am really looking forward to being a little more relaxed about seeing people, networking, and socialising.

I remain concerned about coronavirus and am still being cautious. I would advocate retaining some of the good practice that has had widespread benefits and has kept us safe. I am keeping a watching eye on the winter and also know that it is still affecting businesses due to absences. But I don’t think it is an exaggeration to say that we are in a better place than 12 months ago and at the moment that is an ongoing trend leading to a return to face-to-face meetings and activity. Certainly, there seems to be an appetite to re-engage and I am reminded at every face-to-face meeting I have, how different it is to the online options.

The second reason I am really looking forward to Harrogate is that we have so much to talk about this year. A recurring Harrogate message is always to encourage visitors to become a member of the CFA, and that will of course remain. But we also like to use Harrogate to bring new material and content to members, and the industry.

One of our main themes of Harrogate 2022 will be Future Fitters – our ongoing headline campaign to increase the number of new fitters joining our industry. Core to that is the CFA’s Future Fitters brochure that was launched to members in June and to the wider industry in August. There is so much to talk about within the Future Fitters campaign that I am really hoping to encourage lots of people to come and see us and help reinforce my optimistic take on the situation – namely that we have a practical solution to tackle all the main barriers to recruitment – and hopefully turn them into opportunities!

We will be promoting the STEM Ambassadors scheme (a way to link to local schools and colleges), explaining how contractors can post new jobs on Talentview (for free) and making sure people have access to the best funding available. That is of course in addition to free hard copies of the new CFA members handbook, and the new 2022 Guide to Contract Flooring launched in July. The latter only being published every five years and THE leading technical guide for our sector.

CFA is moving towards digital, and we are supporting that with easy access to digital copies of all our literature including this year’s Sustainability Guide – our first digital-only supplement that continues our account of the journey the flooring industry is taking to more sustainable and environmentally sensitive flooring solutions. That’s why it is digital only… It’s more sustainable.

Spoiler alert, you will be able to scan the walls of the CFA/CFJ stand to access all of our literature online via QR codes.

In the run up to Harrogate interest in training and FITA has never been greater and as usual we will be close to the FITA demo zone in Hall B. But the programme there has also been re-vamped and there are some great ways to interact. We have a show special on courses, with members getting a massive 25% discount and non-members receiving 15%. We will of course be showing lots of great materials and best practice for installing them.

So, there is lots and lots to come and speak to us about at Harrogate, and we really are looking forward to seeing you all there!

The CFA is a leading trade association representing the flooring Industry. If you would like further information about our Future Fitters project, or an application pack outlining the benefits of membership, please contact the CFA offices.
0115 9411126

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