The Furniture Industry Research Association

The centre of knowledge for the furniture industry

Eric Catton

Technical and Product Consultant - Catton Associates


Eric spent 18 years in mechanical engineering during which time he served a 6 year apprenticeship as a draughtsman, and worked for various engineering companies in the following 12 years.

He has over 37 years experience of the furniture industry and has had an association with the Furniture Industry Research Association for most of it. Having worked 22 years for Project Office Furniture in management roles for the design and development department, this was followed by 4 years' as a freelance consultant working with clients on project management initiatives and specialist sales. From 2006 Eric worked 9 years for Amaryllis who are a leading force in workplace management, implementing the development and production of a unique portfolio of products and services to offer best value solutions for public and private sector clients.

Having semi-retired in 2015 he wanted to give something back to the furniture industry he worked in for over half his life, and pass on his knowledge and experience to others. He returned to freelance consultancy working with Amaryllis, and others as needed.

Eric says his role in the industry has changed to be something of an all-rounder, having formerly represented a major office furniture manufacturer, whose objective was to supply product that suited their production process. However latterly representing the product supplier and end-user who have a specific brief, and working with them to achieve their objective with manufacturers that match the brief. He feels his experience in manufacturing gives him an ideal grounding to represent and achieve the client's objective. At Amaryllis he championed the company's re-manufacturing development processes of products, and worked with external companies to provide innovative and cost saving solutions, in the re-use of the clients own products.

He enjoys, being able to get away from it all on the golf course, and is a keen all-sport observer. Eric also enjoys time with the family particularly his grandchildren; the rough and tumble that usually ensues, plus regular 'light sabre' attacks and football in the garden or lengthy explanations of their latest amazing experiences!