This blog will explain what ESCHFOE is and what does ESCHFOE mean for the Membership and the Public.
Firstly what is ESCHFOE and what does the acronym stand for?
The `europaischen schornsteinfegermeister foderation` or theÂ `European federation of master chimney sweeps` .
The ESCHFOE is a professional federationÂ of chimney sweeping guilds which boasts a membershipÂ from over 21 countries.
The Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps have longÂ since been active members of ESCHFOE and represent the UK on a National level atÂ meetings. The decision to join was taken by the Guild in 2006Â when we were invited to become a members ofÂ the international association.Â As the Guild`s primary goal is to raise standards within the UK we obviously jumped at the chance.
Since joining, ESCHFOE has arranged specialisedÂ training for the GMCS membership whichÂ was not previously availableÂ in the UKÂ . This has resulted in raisingÂ Â the expertise of GuildÂ membersÂ to aÂ new level. Furthermore the new Guild training manual is based on a mixture of UK expertise, experience and the German training system. The German chimney sweepingÂ Â training programme is undoubtedly the best in the world.Â AÂ Â successful Master chimney sweepÂ would finishÂ school with a degree in chimney sweeping. The ESCHFOE membership are very keen that allÂ admitted Guilds must have very high training and membership standards. This can only be achieved with the massive knowledge base that is shared freely between its membersÂ via cross border training programs.
Things have changed in the solid fuel industry a lot in the past few years for example; British Standards have been superseded by BSEN`s and E Norms. The new UK Building regulations for 2010 have been rewritten to accommodate this and to reach a common standard throughout Europe. Furthermore there has been a massive growth in wood and biomass systems. These systems are fairly new to the UK but areÂ common inÂ Europe.Â With European helpÂ our guild can now offer expert training in the service and maintenance of these systems.
It is only ESCHFOE that gives the UK chimney sweeps a tangible platform in Brussels. ESCHFOE also ensures that members are kept up to date with changes to European legislation and practices.
ESCHFOE meeting 2010
The ESCHFOE meeting for this year was hosted by the Swiss Chimney sweeping guild in Montreaux.
Many things were covered during this meeting including the admission of new member states, environmental issues, European legislation and an exchange of knowledge and ideas of members. Further, it was proposedÂ that The Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps willÂ host the 2013 technical meeting here in the UK.
It has been my pleasure to represent the Guild and the UK at the ESCHFOE in Montreux andÂ I would personally like to thank Mr Jacques Morell, the president of the Swiss Chimney Sweeping Guild, for his hard work and hospitality.
Regards Daniel Hodgson