Lawson Wight – Chairman
“The importance of a well-trained, professional sweep cannot be overstated. The safety of our customers, their families and their property can be greatly increased by using a Guild member for chimney sweeping, solid fuel servicing and advice.”
Lawson entered the chimney sweeping profession in 2000. He joined the Guild as he felt the organisation had the most expert members and these were the people he wished to associate with.
By 2007, Lawson realised that both the Guild and the industry required real change, which could only be achieved by taking a more active role. This led to his appointment to the Guild’s Education Committee, and in 2009 he became Public Relations Director.
While he still has a presence at the training programme for new members, and provides on-site training days, his role within the Guild has evolved. He concentrates his efforts on promoting the professionalism of members to consumers and communicating with the wider solid fuel industry. More recently his focus has been working with government officials to ensure the interests of chimney sweeps and their customers are a primary consideration with regard to policy and legislation.
There is also a great deal of work to do to educate consumers on the many aspects of efficient solid fuel use. Lawson added: “The Guild is a real industry leader with strategic plans for the ongoing professionalisation of our trade.”
David Wooffindin – Educational Director
“The public are becoming more and more aware of the importance of using competent and assessed chimney sweeps. The Guild ensures that the very best chimney sweeping service is provided by each and every one of our members.
“The future for the Guild is looking great – we are entering a time where Guild sweeps are being recognised for the professionals they are.”
David picked up his first rod and brush in 1993 when he established Chimney Services, providing chimney sweeping and appliance repair services to residents of South Yorkshire.
By 1997 David realised that joining a chimney sweep organisation could only be of benefit. After researching the options available he felt the Guild, as a forward-thinking group of professionals, was the best fit for him.
Within 18 months he decided he had more to give to the Guild, and in 1998 was appointed as Guild Assessor.
Over the years the Guild’s training programme has evolved and David has been at the forefront, ensuring that all Guild trainees are of the highest standard. This enables them to stand out from their unqualified competitors and being a Guild member also provides them with the support of a national network of sweeps, all happy to help each other with problems they may encounter in the course of their work.
Today, not only is David still the Guild Assessor, but he also holds the role of Treasurer.
Emma Roddy – Director
I have worked in the sweeping industry since 2014. In 2015, I became a proud fellow member of the Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps. Prior to my sweep life, I spent over 20 years within the insolvency and accountancy industry developing a wide range of both people and business skills that I still use to date. I managed a large team of people and provided training to new trainees. This enabled me to develop people skills to succeed in a business culture that respected each individual’s skills and contribution. Plus a fundamental belief in getting things right, first time.
Following my previous experience on the importance of thorough high quality training, I chose quite quickly to become a trainer within the Guild. As a member, I knew the reputation that the Guild had within our industry on the professional training that is provided and felt that this is paramount on our journey to educate customers. I have helped train and develop a number of Guild members, including recently my daughter. I still continue to hear from those that I have trained and provide advice.
As we know, times are changing and with more women coming through into the construction industry I feel that it is time to have a female on the board of directors. I intend to represent the incredible members of the Guild and also hopefully inspire women within our industry. It can be daunting for women working in a traditionally male dominated industry. But like many female sweeps throughout the country now, we have proved that this is no longer the case.
I am, like many other sweeps a true believer in that the industry should be run by sweeps for sweeps, and although I have not worked within the industry for as long as some of my fellow members, I do feel that I have gained the skills, qualities, high standards and experience to represent the members and work with the board of directors.
John Stone – Scotland Region Director
“I came back into the world of chimneys after my daughters started school after being a full time Dad for 10 years, as my then partner had a career job in the oil industry.
My history as far as chimney related work was in cast in-situ lining which gave me a good understanding in chimney construction, if not always the correct procedures!”“In 2011 after a bit of research of the different associations offering training and asking a Certified Sweep who worked locally, I followed his advice and came to a Guild course at Surefire training centre in Derbyshire. I was blown away and somewhat shocked by my lack of knowledge and the potential to get the whole job so dangerously wrong.”
Five years and a lot of learning later, and John really wanted to help support and improve the accessibility of training to those in Scotland. Initially, after attending a second sweep course as a refresher he became a trainer, and went on to become an NVQ approved Assessor for the Guild.
“If I was asked to say what is it about the Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps that make it the best association, it would be the desire of its members to be the most professional, forward and open minded in the industry. The willingness to help each other and always to improve our knowledge and that of the other chimney sweeps for the benefit of the whole industry.”
With the support of the Guild board, we are pushing forward with the training access programme in Scotland.
Lang may Yer Lum Reek!
Paul Clements - Carbon Monoxide Awareness
You get poisonous gasses from burning wood and coal, as you do from your gas boiler. A Carbon Monoxide alarm is relatively cheap and lasts for years.
Risks are usually very small but an alarm helps prevent tragedies in unforeseen circumstances.
Talk to us about ones to buy and importantly, how to position one to be effective
Simon RooneyNorth East
Iain StevensSouth West
Les BoweringSouth East