As well as playing around with the numbers 3 and 5, we’ve done quite a lot over the last 35 years. Here are just a few of the highlights…
3 Internal Projects:
– Launched just last month, our new animal bedding range, Hop & Squeak, has been designed as an eco-friendly alternative to standard animal bedding.
– Made from the recycled off-cuts of teabag paper, it provides a cosy, but environmentally-friendly, bed for all those little Peter Rabbits in our lives (as well as hamsters, gerbils, guinea pigs and other similar rodents).
– So far, we’ve had a good response from local independent retailers and are in the process of expanding into other animal markets and online marketplaces like Amazon.
Solar Panel Roofing
– In a move away from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources, in January 2016, we worked with Solarsense to install 384 solar panels on our roof at Commerce House (our high security shredding facility).
– These solar panels now supply 50% of the power needed to operate our shredding machinery on site and, as an added bonus, have led to a 51% reduction in electricity costs.
– The panels were a big contributor to us winning the BSIA ‘Security Industry Environmental Award’ in 2017.
– Back in 2009, we were asked to help dispose of some IT and furniture packaging waste, including polystyrene. This kind of waste takes up a lot of space in landfill and can take a thousand years to degrade. Because of this, plus the cost attached to landfill, the customer wanted a more environmentally-friendly way of disposing of it.
– So we took on the challenge and looked into the viability of buying and selling polystyrene, as well as transportation options for this material.
– Manufacturers across the UK and Spain said they would accept the material if it was baled. So we invested in a specialised polystyrene compactor machine (aka a baler), which turned the polystyrene into a solid block. And bingo, our polystyrene recycling service was born.
– Still going strong, in 2017 we collected approximately 38.5 tonnes of polystyrene from customers. And, if you’re thinking that’s not very big, just think how much room the material takes up before it’s compressed!
– All of this is then recycled into new products, such as insulation and packaging, hardboard furniture and CD and DVD cases.
5 External Projects:
The Butterfly Garden Bus
– Last year, during the festive period, we presented Chair of The Butterfly Garden, Chris Evans, with a pretty big Christmas present – a mini-bus AKA “The Butterflyer”.
– “The Butterflyer” has been designed to provide vital, and free, transport for the Garden’s service users, as well as giving them the opportunity to go on day trips.
– This has all been done with the help of a small army of other local businesses, including Cotswold Supported Living, Ellwood Doors and Living and Signlink.
CCP Hamper Scamper
– For the last three years, we’ve helped out with CCP’s Christmas giving scheme, Hamper Scamper, which provides food parcels to disadvantaged people in Gloucestershire.
– Our very generous customers have always got readily involved, volunteering food items to fill the parcels, and our wonderful staff do a great job, year after year, of collecting those parcels and making sure they reach CCP safely.
– CCP also hold the fundraising event, Cheltenham Challenge. And, while we haven’t opted to run it (yet), we’ve supplied bins for the occasion and enabled the charity to go zero-to-landfill.
Alderman Knight School
– Over the last few years, we’ve taken great pleasure in showing pupils from Alderman Knight School around our recycling and confidential shredding sites. These tours help them to see the benefits of looking after the environment, as well as giving them an insight into employment. To gain an even deeper insight, in 2015, one student went on to do a week’s work experience with us.
– We also did an activity day back at Alderman Knight School, allowing students to separate materials into the correct grades and learn more about what makes them valuable.
Widden Primary School
– In 2014, as part of their environmental education programme, pupils from Widden Primary School were asked to create an eco-greenhouse, made out of recycled plastic bottles and wooden frames.
– After collecting as many bottles as they could find, but still needing more, the pupils realised they could do with a little help. And this is where we came in. We delivered hundreds of plastic bottles to the school to help with the build.
– The project was a huge success and gained awareness internationally for showcasing the importance of the 3Rs (reduction, recycling and re-use) through a multi-sensory experience.
– To top it all off (literally), the lids of all of the plastic bottles were sent off to a charity that buys wheelchairs. Once exchanged for money, the revenue was used to purchase additional wheelchairs.
– Every year, after Christmas, medical charity, Cobalt, encourage both businesses and the general public to donate their old Christmas cards to them, as part of their Christmas Upcycling Scheme. The charity then works its magic and turns these old cuts of card back into brand new greeting cards, ready for the next year.
– We’ve been supporting Cobalt now for over 7 years, by getting customers involved, collecting all of the unwanted cards, and shredding and recycling these. In 2017 alone, we collected 35,000 Christmas cards!
– The new cards are then sold the next Christmas, raising a whopping £30,000 each year – vital funds to help those with cancer, dementia and other conditions.