The UK’s only woodworking machinery and equipment show, the W Exhibition, and leading furniture and materials and components show, Elements, have partnered with the Furniture and Interiors Education, Skills and Training Alliance (FIESTA) on the exhibition’s brand-new Education Zone.

The trade organisation, which was formed earlier this year to unite and inspire furniture and interiors businesses and combat the threat of a widening skills gap in the woodworking sector, will join forces with the leading furniture manufacturing exhibition to promote the importance of training and qualifications in the industry. 

The employer-led association will play a key role in the W Exhibition’s brand new Education Zone, which will see FIESTA, National Association of Shopfitters (NAS), the British Furniture Manufacturers (BFM), the British Woodworking Federation (BWF) and Didac Training College join forces to provide support and advice on legislation, health and safety, productivity, careers, education and apprenticeships within the furniture industry. 

Exhibition visitors will also be able to take part in private drop-in sessions where industry experts will be on hand to answer any questions they may have, whilst daily workshops, covering popular industry-related topics, will be open to all. 

Event director, Lisa Campagnola says: “Our key objectives work in parallel with one another. The W Exhibition and Elements have created a platform to help promote talent in the industry and FIESTA’s ability to put skills development and training at the forefront of the sector makes them an ideal partner for the Education Zone. By working together, we’re confident that we can educate businesses of all shapes and sizes and promote positive change within the industry.”

On behalf of FIESTA, Martin James adds: “We want to encourage talented new workers to join the industry, and to do this, we need to offer support and guidance to both the trainee and the employer. Events like the W Exhibition and Elements are a great opportunity for us to engage with the industry and get our message out there. 

“The Education Zone will play a key part in this and by working alongside well-known trade associations and affiliates that represent manufacturers and designers in this sector, we will continue to forge relationships and inspire talented new workers to join the industry.”

The W Exbibition and Elements will be taking place from the 30th September-3rd October at the NEC, Birmingham. For more information visit or follow @W_Exhibition and @Elements_Expo on Twitter and like The W Exhibition on Facebook.

Martin James