The Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering – CIPHE – has welcomed Christopher Northey, pictured, as its new president at a recent AGM at United Insurance Brokers in London, where outgoing president Tracey Richardson handed over the reins to the former vice president.

Northey started his plumbing career as an apprentice in the family business in 1987. After gaining his qualifications, he spent six years working in the field before applying to study for a Building Services Engineering Design and Management degree at Reading University.

CIPHE plumber SamDemeza

Following several more qualifications within the design of public health engineering services associated with water, drainage, fire and gas engineering systems, Northey gained his Master Plumber certificate in 2004. For the past seven years, he has worked as a design director.

“Encouraging young people into our great industry and giving them opportunities for career progression must be one of our key goals and objectives for securing our industry’s future,” Northey said in his first presidential address.

“We have the technical knowledge and experience as plumbing and heating professionals, and we must ensure that this continued transfer of both practical and technical knowledge, is maintained to the next generation of young plumbing and heating engineers.”

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He added: “At this moment in time – with the unfortunate rise in the skills shortage within our industry – never has training and competence been more essential. With ever-changing regulations, increased standards and more complex systems and components, the need for a highly trained workforce is a must.”

CIPHE CEO Kevin Wellman said: “I’d like to thank Tracey Richardson for her hard work and dedication in her Presidential year. Chris, with his passion for the industry and interest in training, is a perfect successor to Tracey, who made education and training pivotal to her year in office.”