It seems there is a trade show for just about everything, cars, boats, toys and even sex, so why leave heating and plumbing out? PHEX, the Plumbing and Heating Exhibition, is into its 21st year. It is the only exhibition that brings together both domestic and commercial manufacturers, and demonstrates the newest innovations the industry has to offer. It is held over two days, is completely free to attend, and offers a wealth of information and advice. It is also a great opportunity to network. Whether you are an established heating engineer, an apprentice plumber, or just someone who is interested in the future of heating and plumbing, this show has plenty to offer.

So what do you get out of a trade show?

I feel the best way to demonstrate this would be to present you this review of last year’s event in one of the leading journals, the HVP (Heating, Venting and Plumbing) magazine:

‘Only half an hour in and already the exhibition hall at PHEX Manchester was buzzing with visitors. As the coaches began to arrive, exhibitors made final adjustments to their stands and readied their scanners to make sure they captured any potential leads with ease. As the aisles filled, sales managers peeled off to the bar and tables to conduct meetings and catch up with clients, while those on the stands talked installers through their latest products. Those manufacturers who opted to give live demonstrations of their products proved very popular, interacting well with delegates and in some cases drawing quite a crowd.

Also grabbing the attention of the engineers in attendance were the Gas Safe Register seminars. Two on each day gave visitors the chance to catch up with the Register’s progress, while those with more in depth questions could visit the stand and speak with one of the technical officers.

Viewers at an exhibitionAfter the mad rush for lunch, which tends to give the exhibitors a chance to catch their breath, the show sprung back to life as installers attempted to make their way back to manufacturer’s they couldn’t reach earlier in the day. All in all, it was a very successful show, with delegates saying they appreciated the opportunity to get hands on with new products and talk with manufacturers, as a way of staying ahead of the competition.’

This years’ exhibition (to be held in May) will have an added incentive as the leading plumbers merchants are organising ‘free travel’ to the venue. Arrive in style, stress free and ready to absorb the day’s events.

If the many offers and discounts available, free entry and free pick up, aren’t enough to whet your appetite, perhaps this testimonial will be:

“A very interesting time can be had. My visit has always had a positive effect on my work ethic – I come away with new ideas and information. PHEX is a beneficial way of comparing competing products, making and renewing contacts with a variety of complementary businesses.”

Heating and plumbing are such an integral part of our lives, it’s good thing to arm ourselves with a little bit more knowledge about what they involve.

(Photos by Bran Crowe and ThinkGeoEnergy)