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Last edited 14 Mar 2022
Guild of Architectural Ironmongers
The Guild of Architectural Ironmongers (GAI) is the only trade body in the UK that represents the interests of the whole architectural ironmongery industry - architectural ironmongers, wholesalers and manufacturers. The GAI has more than 300 members in 27 countries.
The GAI’s technical information service is the only specialist service of its kind for door and window hardware specialists and specifiers. It provides GAI members with comprehensive advice on issues relating to the legislation, regulations and standards governing the use of architectural ironmongery and related hardware.
The GAI was founded in Birmingham in 1961.
The GAI is led by an executive committee that comprises of senior management from a cross-section of full members who work for large and small organisations in architectural ironmongery. It is run by the industry, for the industry.
Operations and day-to–day management are led by the GAI’s CEO, Simon Forrester. The current president is Mario Del Signore, (Managing Director of CES Security Solutions Ltd) who has held the position since June 2021.
The GAI’s committees manage its core activities:
- Executive Committee: manages the overall business of the GAI, finances, marketing and strategic direction as well as IAI.
- Education Committee: reviews content and delivery mechanisms of the GAI's education programme, including IAI CPD and RegAI development.
- Technical Committee: clarifies and communicates changes to standards and regulations which affect GAI members.
- IAI Executive Committee: reviews and plans activities and development opportunities for members of the GAI’s sister body, the Institute of Architectural Ironmongers (IAI). ,
The GAI runs a three-year Diploma programme covering all aspects of architectural ironmongery. It is designed for everyone working in the architectural ironmongery industry, regardless of their location in the world, and is constantly updated to reflect changes in the industry.
 Foundation in Hardware
The GAI education programme starts with the Foundation in Hardware module, an online introductory course designed to raise knowledge and standards among those who need to understand the basics but don’t need to live and breathe ironmongery in their day-to-day jobs.
 Stage 2: Certificate in Architectural Hardware
The Certificate in Architectural Hardware comprises two stages, with a total of 25 updated education modules available online, covering everything a practising architectural ironmonger is required to know. The modules include helpful explanations, animations and video clips, all geared to engage learners in easily digestible chunks. There are also unlimited self-tests.
 Stage 3: GAI Diploma
Beyond the Certificate, learners can continue their studies to achieve the prestigious GAI Diploma. This stage focuses entirely on the skills and learning needed for scheduling, of particular importance to those architectural ironmongers working on projects being built to UK and European standards across the globe.
Learners on the GAI education programme have come from 27 different countries, with nearly half of them based outside the UK, including from Sri Lanka, Canada, India, China, South Africa and the Gulf. Particularly high numbers of qualifications have been noted from South Africa, Dubai and Hong Kong.
CPD points can be gained though additional routes, such as personal knowledge, development at trade shows and exhibitions, reading industry related articles, and learning via Guild and Institute approved podcasts and videos from trade bodies including the RIBA and BSI.
 GAI Technical Content
Through the GAI’s Technical Information Service, members have access to a library of technical updates, RIBA-approved CPD materials and other information which is regularly updated, enabling them to offer informed services to their clients.
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