Shining a spotlight on the painting and decorating sector

9 January 2024

The Painting and Decorating Association (PDA) is urging painters and decorators to get ahead of the game and plan for key events in 2024 – the 130th year of the Association.

As the UK’s largest trade body dedicated to the sector, the PDA’s activities are designed to showcase the skills, knowledge and talent required to excel in the trade.

The flagship event of this special anniversary year is the PDA’s Premier Trophy Awards, which this year will mark its own 35th anniversary.

A chance to fly the flag for excellence in the sector the Premier Trophy Awards will showcase the very best work from painters and decorators in the UK across seven categories.

Following the entry deadline on January 12, independent judges from the Institute of Clerks of Works and Construction Inspectorate will consider scores of applications before drawing up a shortlist of projects to visit for final scoring.

Category awards and winners will be announced at the glittering awards ceremony at Plaisterers’ Hall, London on July 4, with one entrant declared Supreme Winner.

PDA Chief Executive, Neil Ogilvie said: “At its heart, the PDA is about representing the very highest standards among painters and decorators and showing that dedication to excellence helps build strong relationships with customers and communities as well as within the trade and wider industry.

“The work we undertake on behalf of our members provides opportunities to shine a spotlight on the sector and some of the incredible work that is completed each year, as well as encouraging more people into the trade.

“Our relationships with industry partners provide a wide range of benefits to our members, who can clearly demonstrate to their customers their commitment to providing a quality job at a reasonable price. Why choose anyone else?”

Painters and decorators who meet the qualifying criteria can join the PDA at any point during the year, but existing members are encouraged to renew between December and March.

This year the first 50 members who renewed and paid their subscription fee in full will receive a Festool mystery box worth £70 – and all members who complete their renewal with full fee payment (excluding direct debit, Premium Credit or part-payment) before February 28 will be entered into the Early Bird Prize Draw.

This year’s prize is a T3 Airless Sprayer worth over £1,700, generously donated by PDA Associate Partner, TriTech Industries.

Also in February is the deadline for applications for the PDA’s Apprentice of the Year competition, which continues to grow in popularity with 2023 seeing record numbers of entrants

In 2024, senior and junior top scorers at each of the four regional heats will go through to a Grand Final to compete for the PDA Apprentice of the Year title, with winners announced at the Premier Trophy Awards.

The competition begins on March 21 at North Kent College with further heats at Accrington and Rossendale College on April 11, Glasgow College on April 18 and South and City College Birmingham on May 9.

The Grand Final will take place at Doncaster College and University Centre on June 6.

Entry forms can be downloaded from the PDA website and the deadline to apply is February 16.

The PDA’s Apprentice Paperhanger of the Year competition has also become increasingly popular, with record entrants prompting the addition of an extra competition day last year.

A grueling challenge designed to test the limits of precision, stamina and skill, the competition takes place at Doncaster College and University Centre on May 28 and June 11. Entry forms need to be submitted by April 26 and are available here.

Both competitions are open to Level 1 and Level 2 painting and decorating apprentices regardless of whether their employer is a PDA member.

The winners of the Apprentice Paperhanger of the Year competition will be revealed at the PDA’s annual National Networking Event Gala Dinner.

Held each autumn at a different location around the country, this is a great event for networking and socialising, with a drinks’ reception, three course meal, live entertainment and dancing, as well as the option to stay overnight.

This year the event is at the Hilton Liverpool City Centre from October 4 to 6.

As well as hosting awards and competitions, the PDA has a presence at a variety of industry events at home and abroad, from construction industry conferences to UNIEP meetings.

The PDA will also return to the National Painting and Decorating Show at the CBS Arena, Coventry in 2024, taking a stand at the event which takes place on November 19 and 20.

Neil added: “The PDA has always been about giving a collective voice to the painting and decorating trade as well as upholding the highest standards and supporting members in their business.

“We have a packed calendar for 2024 and we look forward to working with and supporting members old and new throughout the year ahead.”

To find out more about the PDA, apply to join, or enter one of the competitions, visit:


About the PDA

The Painting and Decorating Association (PDA) was established in July 2002, following a merger of the British Decorators’ Association and the Painting & Decorating Federation. The British Decorators’ Association was originally founded in 1894.

This organisation is Britain’s largest trade body, dedicated to the painting and decorating trade. Members include sole traders through to large-scale national contractors employing hundreds of operatives.

The PDA is proud of its long history and high standards, and a registered member can be relied upon to do a good professional job at a fair price.

Press release issued by Jane Shepherd, Shepherd PR.

To arrange an interview please email [email protected] or call 01538 308685.