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IFEDA elects Paul Wilkinson as organisation’s new chairman

22 November 2021

THE INDEPENDENT Fire Engineering & Distributors Association (IFEDA) reports that Paul Wilkinson was unanimously elected as the new chair of the Association at its recent Annual General Meeting. Wilkinson has been a member of IFEDA for six years and has worked in the fire industry for over three decades after establishing his own company, namely Cambridgeshire-based Fire and Safety Solutions Limited.

Fire and Safety Solutions Limited has looked after the housing stock for City West Homes in addition to providing fire safety products and services for commercial, educational and blue chip organisations, among them Coca-Cola, British Sugar and the Royal Albert Hall.

Commenting on the news, Wilkinson stated: “I feel there’s a need in the industry to ensure that individuals, as well as companies, are registered and certified in their profession. We see too many certified companies using unqualified individuals under their umbrella. I’m now looking forward to building working relationships with other trade bodies for the good of the fire industry and the general public.”

He continued: “We are going through a great period of change within the industry with the implementation of new qualifications and proposed new technologies in the fire extinguisher sector. I embrace these new standards and await with interest the outcome of the proposed new technologies.”

Further, Wilkinson observed: “It has been a tough year for the industry with COVID-19, the impact of Brexit and shipping costs increasing. As chair of IFEDA, I hope that I can support the fire industry such that IFEDA can continue providing high quality advice and training for the industry. I will work tirelessly to represent IFEDA, as well as the industry, throughout the ongoing challenges confronting us all at this time.”

Graham Ferris, general manager at IFEDA, responded: “We’re pleased to welcome Paul as our new chair. Given his vast experience in the fire protection industry, not least as a member of FSH-2 (the BSI’s Fire Extinguisher Steering Group) and various BAFE Schemes, I’m sure this appointment will prove to be a great success both for IFEDA and the wider fire industry.”

Ferris concluded: “In line with the post-Grenfell report produced by Dame Judith Hackitt subsequent to the Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety, IFEDA is a firm advocate of third party accreditation. In view of Paul’s ethics with regards to quality standards, IFEDA is in safe hands.”