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Boosts for stair certification scheme

24 Sep 12 The British Woodworking Federation's Stair Scheme has welcomed 19 new members this summer in a boost to the joinery industry’s work to build confidence in timber stair products.

The BWF Stair Scheme is the only accreditation and certification scheme of its kind in the UK.  Its membership is now estimated to account for 70% of the timber staircase industry in the UK. 

The significant part of this growth has come from the Timber Staircase Association, because of its decision to encourage all members to sign up to the BWF Stair Scheme.

Michael Smith, director of David Smith St Ives Ltd, said: “The BWF Stair Scheme provides a valuable opportunity to our industry to focus on quality and to support clients and specifiers.  Standards and regulation in the stair market remain highly subjective, but by working together through the BWF we can start to address this by agreeing a consistent industry approach."

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BWF chief executive Iain Mcilwee said: “The industry has really got behind this important initiative, and the scheme now has real momentum. Companies sign up to a rigorous set of standards, but this provides huge reassurance to specifiers and contractors across a wide range of markets. This is particularly important in helping us to push the market more actively for timber stairs in common flight and fire critical environments.”

Celebrating its second birthday this month, the BWF Stair Scheme focuses on performance standards associated with loading, deflection and fire safety in staircases. All accredited manufacturers are audited biennially to confirm that an appropriate factory control system is in place and that stairs are consistently manufactured to appropriate standards. The member companies must also comply with the BWF Code of Conduct.

Every BWF Stair Scheme approved staircase is badged with a serial number, and colour coded to indicate whether it is a domestic, common or fire protected stair.

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