Recofloor members’ achievements in recycling a record 500-plus tonnes of waste vinyl flooring in 2014 were celebrated at the fourth Annual Awards event, held at Leicester Tigers Rugby Club in March.
More than 70 flooring industry delegates attended to receive their trophies and certificates from guest host, England rugby legend and former British Lions captain Bill Beaumont.
Bill, a self-confessed ‘avid recycler’, praised the ‘outstanding’ work of the UK’s award-winning scheme, founded in 2009 by flooring manufacturers Polyflor and Altro, adding: “I’m impressed; it’s fascinating, as an outsider, to hear how Recofloor operates.”
Directors Bob Smith of Polyflor and John Patsavellas of Altro emphasised the importance of Recofloor to the sector’s sustainability efforts, saying: “Every contractor, fitter or distributor who raises a collection contributes to the overall amount of flooring we can recycle. It’s very important to close the loop.”
Echoing these sentiments, CFA Council Member Hamish Macgregor, Managing Director of Hamilton-based Macgregor Flooring Company Ltd urged flooring contractors to ‘overcome their reluctance and try harder’, saying: “Although general awareness of sustainability issues is greater, there’s still a long way to go. I accept it’s harder for smaller firms to implement green initiatives, but Recofloor can save up to 70% on disposal costs versus landfill and it benefits the environment.”
MacGregor Flooring Company Ltd won Construction Project of the Year Award for collecting more than 14 tonnes of waste vinyl over eight months from the new £90 million West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven. Effective communication built good working relationships and ensured efficient regular collections from site.
Andy Nichols and Steve Llewellyn from 3D Flooring Supplies, Cardiff, who were Highly Commended in Distributor of the Year category, inform and encourage their customers to take part. Steve said: “It’s important to emphasise the benefits because it really is a ‘win-win’ situation for everybody.”
To date, more than 2,250 tonnes of vinyl flooring waste has been diverted from landfill through Recofloor and recycled back into new flooring or traffic management products such as cones and sign bases. Benefits for 650-plus collectors across the UK include a sustainable option for end-of-life flooring, enhanced green credentials and up to 75% savings in disposal costs.
Recofloor’s Project Manager Jane Gardner praised the ‘collaboration of the entire flooring supply chain’ in continuing to grow the scheme, which will have an added focus on fitter training schools to grow recycling awareness further. Working with more main contractors on construction projects is also a priority.
She added: “We want to keep the momentum going and continue to grow the scheme so we can treble the amount of flooring we collect within the next five years.”
Competition was intense in all eight award categories. Entries are judged mainly on last year’s achievements, while also recognising collectors’ significant contributions in various ways.
AA Flooring Ltd received Best Newcomer for its speedy sustainable impact at its Bleadon, Somerset premises. Greatest Improver went to Birch Distribution, Hull, also a Gold Award winner, for its impressive four-fold increase in tonnage collected compared to the previous year.
Nominated by his employer, Benjamin Neale of Gold Award winner Reform Flooring Ltd, Norwich, was named Recofloor Champion for his dedication and promotion of the scheme to others. His personal involvement results in clean good quality vinyl sent back for recycling.
Contractor of the Year went to Mayfield Floors, Stockport for demonstrating unwavering commitment to the scheme by collecting material to Recofloor specifications, thereby contributing to the scheme’s on-going success.
Recofloor’s 71 distributors play a key role in the scheme’s success by extending their services to allow fitters to drop off smaller volumes of waste vinyl flooring at their sites. Birch Distribution, Hull was named Distributor of the Year for its enthusiastic support, collecting 33 tonnes in 2014, and unstinting efforts in promoting the scheme to its customers.
Carpets ‘N’ Carpets Ltd, Treorchy, scooped the Outstanding Achievement award which recognised their efforts in doubling collections over the previous year and arranging regular bulk collections that reduce transport requirements.
The final award; the Long-Standing Service Award was presented to The Hull Flooring Co. Ltd for ‘integrating Recofloor into working practices since joining the scheme from the very start’. Commitment to promoting recycling to their clients, advance planning and communication with the team also marked its success.
A total of 41 firms received Gold and Silver Awards, calculated by the tonnage collected in relation to the average number of fitters employed.
Gold Award winners included: 3D Flooring Supplies (Cardiff); B&K Systems (Leeds); Birch Distribution, Hull; Bramhall Flooring Co, Hyde; Branagan Flooring Services (Manchester); Carpet & Flooring (Manchester); Carpets ‘N’ Carpets, Treorchy; The Hull Flooring Company; Kent Flooring Supplies (Kent); Lee Floorstok (Manchester); MCD Wales (Bridgend); MacGregor Flooring Company, Hamilton; Mayfield Floors, Stockport; N&S Flooring (Bristol); Nutland Carpet Accessories (Chandlers Ford); Ross Hughes Flooring (Caernarfon) and Top Floors (East Anglia) Ltd (Ipswich).
Silver Award winners were: 3D Flooring (Crawley); Ashmount Flooring Supplies (London); Beach Bros (Devon); Beds Flooring (Bedford); Birch Distribution (Sheffield); Breydon Flooring (Great Yarmouth); Carpet & Flooring (Bow); Carpet & Flooring (Bristol); Carpet & Flooring (Camberley); Derwent Plymouth Ltd; Fitwell Flooring (Redruth); Flooring Solutions (NI) Ltd; Floorings Frome (Somerset); Floormart (Leicester); Headlam Scotland (Motherwell); Hicks Flooring (Norfolk); Horne Bros Carpets Ltd; Mercado, Leeds; Neofloors Ltd; PJ Atherton Flooring (Ashton-Under-Lyne); Stanground Carpets & Flooring Ltd; Status Flooring Ltd; Taranis Flooring Ltd (Glasgow).