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Furniture industry celebrates at Westminster

An event held by the Furniture Industry Research Association and FIRA International, the UK's largest furniture association and leading furniture technology centre, at the House of Lords on Friday 11th September was a great success.

250 guests attended the prestigious annual event hosted by Lord Hoyle of Warrington which took place in the Cholmondley Room and on the terrace overlooking the Thames.

Phil Reynolds, General Manager - FIRA International LtdPhil Reynolds, FIRA's General Manager, said: "We have had a busy year with 35 members joining the Association over the last 12 months. We have also had 24 companies achieve certification, or gain one of our awards, including our FIRA Innovation Award and FIRA Gold Installation Certification for home improvement, covering a new sector for FIRA."

"Thanks again to Lord Hoyle for hosting and to everyone involved in the organisation of the event, it was a great success. This event provides a fantastic opportunity to catch up with long-standing and new members, and meet our award and certification holders. This year we also welcomed the winners of our student design competition, Future@Work a project sponsored by Morgan with the aim of encouraging new talent in the industry."

Speeches were made by FIRA's General Manager, Phil Reynolds, Furniture Industry Research Association Council Chairman, Michael Powell, and Lord Hoyle of Warrington.

A number of FIRA's awards and certifications were presented on the night, including the Ergonomics Excellence Award, FIRA Gold Certification and the Furniture Industry Sustainability Programme (FISP) Certification.

FIRA Innovation Award

• Space Plug - FIRA Innovation Award

Student Design Competition

• 1st Place - Familiar Systems - designed by Jack Darby and Andy Lyell
A piece of technology which aims to replace the computer screen and is based on drone technology
• 2nd Place - Orbis Desk - designed by Mark Heyster
An adjustable workspace, which includes the ability to tilt the desk at different angles
• 3rd Place - Drop Desk, designed by Jonathan Thompson
A sit/stand desk
• 4th Place - JARO Office Furniture Range - designed by Jenny Watling
A desk with an optional acoustic and privacy screen


FIRA Gold Product Certification was awarded to:

• Prima Foam - Primalux cushion - FIRA Gold Product Certification
• Advansa - Quallofil cushion - FIRA Gold Product Certification
• Clinchplain - Logicoil cushion - FIRA Gold Product Certification
• Comfortex - Air and Airwave cushion - FIRA Gold Product Certification
• Tangent Office Furniture - Relay Desking Range - FIRA Gold Product Certification
• Wren Kitchens - Designer Kitchen Range - FIRA Gold Product Certification

FIRA Gold Installation Certification was awarded to:

• B&Q Plc - Home Improvement Services - FIRA Gold Installation Certification
• Bathstore - Fitted Bathroom Furniture - FIRA Gold Installation Certification
• The Kitchen Store - Fitted Kitchen Furniture - FIRA Gold Installation Certification

FIRA Gold Certification is the recognised quality mark for products or installation services within the furniture and kitchen industries. To be awarded FIRA Gold, a product or installation service must be assessed against specified performance levels through independent tests or evaluation by furniture industry experts, FIRA. It is documented proof that products and installation processes are of the highest standard with consistency in production and installation quality verified through regular audit testing and inspections.

Ergonomics Excellence Award

The Ergonomics Excellence Award was awarded to:

• Ergonomic Café - Echo Laptop Stand
• Bakker Elkhuizen - Ultra Laptop Stand
• Herman Miller - Mirra 2 Chair
• Humanscale - Diffrient World Chair
• Steelcase Plc - Gesture Chair

The FIRA Ergonomics Excellence Award identifies genuine ergonomic excellence in both domestic and workplace furniture products by clearly distinguishing those that are outstanding from other products in the marketplace.

In order to receive the Award, stringent ergonomic criteria, safety, user-friendliness and the comfort and wellbeing of the user are considered, as well as whether the product is fit for purpose both structurally and ergonomically.


The Furniture Industry Sustainability Programme (FISP) Certification was awarded to:

• Lyndon Design
• Sedus Stoll Ltd
• Jennifer Newman Studio Ltd
• Knoll Europe
• Modus Furniture
• Portsdown Office Ltd
• Rhubarb Solutions
• Tangent Office Furniture

FISP, which is audited by FIRA International, was launched in 2006 by the industry to support and promote sustainable development. Today, FISP is the standard of sustainable excellence for companies across the furniture supply chain and is recognised as the industry's environmental benchmark.

For more information about FIRA's wide range of services or to enquire about applying for a certification or award scheme, please call +44 (0)1438 777 700 or email

Click here to view photos from the event on Flickr