New trade association

Glass Times editor Nathan Bushell reports on the new industry trade association.

The Certass Trade Association has been launched.

It’s worth bearing in mind that Jon Vanstone, the chair of the new association, worked for the GGF until a year ago, and was on a long list of high profile departures from the federation.

As a result, I can’t help but think that the drivers behind this announcement are personal, as well as professional.

Interestingly, he does say: “We won’t waste time on internal politics or irrelevant issues.”

That said, his experience at the GGF and the National Federation of Roofing Contractors has given him what an insider told me is an awareness of how a trade body can work in a positive way for its members.

We already know that Certass Trade Association will have a bigger focus on installers, and it claims to have 3,000 members – thanks to its certification scheme.

The general consensus among GGF members who I’ve spoken to recently is that the industry needs a trade body to support its members in a number of ways, for example: building regulations; health and safety; technical developments; promotion of the industry as a career option for school leavers; and even political developments.

This is a role traditionally filled by the GGF, but there is some dissatisfaction with the way the organisation is currently being run.

Having a second industry trade body – especially one with 3,000 members from the start – in my mind, can only have a positive effect on the fortunes of the glass and glazing industry.