Recofloor members celebrated their considerable vinyl flooring recycling achievements at the scheme’s third annual 2014 Awards event in March. Flooring companies, contractors and distributors, who have collected nearly 1,700 tonnes of vinyl flooring since the UK take-back scheme’s inception in 2009, received their trophies and certificates from guest host and BBC Sport’s football pundit Mark Lawrenson.
Held at Aston Villa Football Club in Birmingham, the event rewards members’ commitment and is highly valued by the flooring supply chain. 2014 saw competition more intense than ever before!
Recofloor is the UK’s award-winning national vinyl flooring recycling scheme, founded by leading flooring manufacturers Altro and Polyflor, to divert vinyl flooring waste from landfill.
Material is collected, irrespective of who manufactured it, which benefits the environment and significantly reduces collectors’ waste disposal costs.
Smooth and safety flooring off-cuts are recycled back into new products, such as flooring, with smooth uplifted flooring being recycled back into traffic calming products such as cones and sign bases.
Both directors, John Patsavellas of Altro and John Whitesmith of Polyflor, praised the continued efforts of the scheme’s 525-plus collectors, saying: "The quality of the nominees was outstanding and testament to the success of the scheme. Everyone can be proud of what they have achieved."
Based mainly on last year’s achievements, the Recofloor Awards also recognise those collectors who have made significant contributions to the scheme in various ways.
Hull Flooring took Construction Project of the Year for integrating Recofloor into its working practices at a number of retail projects. The award also recognised its continued commitment to promoting recycling to clients, despite the challenging economic climate faced by retailers.
Distributor of the Year and a Gold Award went to Cardiff-based 3D Flooring Supplies for strongly promoting the scheme to local contractors and ensuring returned material meets the Recofloor specification. For the first time, individual branches are now eligible for this category.
Progressive Floors of Camberley took the Drop-off Site User of the Year award for frequently using its local C&F drop-off point with material collected mainly from Health sector projects. This new category recognises collectors, nominated by shortlisted distributors, as using their drop-off point in an environmentally-friendly and efficient manner.
Carpet & Flooring, Manchester scooped the Greatest Improver prize, which celebrates the biggest year-on-year increase weighted by the size of the company concerned. It also won a Gold Award.
North West-based Lee Floorstok Ltd collected the Outstanding Achievement award which recognised their efforts in putting sustainable practices at the heart of their operations.
Birch Distribution clinched the Long-Standing Service Award for its ‘vital support to both the industry and Recofloor’s outstanding success’. Birch Distribution was the first distributor to sign up to Recofloor and won the Distributor of the Year Award in 2012.
Mercado, Leeds received Best Newcomer for support in extending the scheme to its seven branches across the UK since joining Recofloor in June 2013.
Having firmly embraced the Recofloor scheme and almost its doubling collections to nine tonnes in 2013, Norwich-based Reform Flooring was rewarded with the hotly-contested Contractor of the Year trophy. Bulking up large amounts of material enabled Reform to reduce its environmental impact with fewer collections. Reform Flooring also won a Gold Award.
This year, two Recofloor Champions, nominated by their employers, were crowned for their tireless promotion of Recofloor and encouragement of others – Jeff Abbott of Top Floors and Dennis Noakes of Fitwell Flooring.
Jeff’s colleagues said: "Without Jeff we would have never started recycling flooring. He ensures our fitters maximise what vinyl is recycled and that our skip contains no recyclable vinyl. We believe no one goes as far as Jeff to recycle our vinyl for Recofloor."
Dennis, a key supporter of Recofloor since 2010, is driven by the belief that ‘if there is something that can be done to help the environment, why not do it?’
A total of 30 firms received Gold and Silver Awards, calculated by the tonnage collected in relation to the average number of fitters a company employs.
Gold Award winners were named as: Headlam Scotland; Flooring Solutions (NI) Ltd; Birch Distribution (Hull); Beds Flooring; Nutland Carpets (Chandlers Ford); Reform Floors; Top Floors; Mayfield Floors; Carpet and Flooring (Manchester); 3D Flooring Supplies (Cardiff); Ross Hughes Flooring.
Silver Award winners were: The Axiom Group; Kent Flooring; Birch Distribution (Sheffield); Volante; Hull Flooring; MCD Wales; Pennine Flooring Supplies (Heywood); Ashmount Flooring Supplies; Fitwell Floors; Lee Floorstok (Liverpool); Breydon Flooring; PFC Flooring Supplies; STS Flooring (Orpington); Horne Brothers Carpets; Carpets ‘n’ Carpets; Branagan Flooring; Carpet and Flooring (Camberley); 3D Flooring Supplies (Swansea); Hicks Flooring.
A further 105 firms secured Bronze Awards.
Recofloor’s first-ever Design Competition to find an innovative product that will increase the market options for post-consumer vinyl flooring was announced at the Awards event. Engineering design students at two universities have been invited to submit ideas using waste vinyl flooring. Top prize is £1,000 and the competition closes on May 30th.
Speaking on sustainability in the flooring sector, CFA CEO Richard Catt praised the success of the Recofloor scheme and the pioneering spirit behind it. He said: "Altro and Polyflor’s collaboration, together with the team at Recofloor, has resulted in a magnificent network. From the attendees and the list of nominated companies, it’s clear that CFA members value the work of Recofloor.
"The rise of sustainability on the construction industry agenda and in the flooring sector has been notable in the seven years I’ve been working for the CFA. Recofloor members, such as Hull Flooring, are saving money on skips and using the scheme to market their businesses and attract customers," he added.