15th April  //  written by Mark Hadley

As we start the New Year it’s worth looking back over 2016 it has been a very successful one for the business, but also a busy one, you could say we shredded last year.

During the year, we invested heavily in new plant and equipment. Our first and most important acquisition was a brand new stand-alone shredder for the Depot, an AXO FATSO 500 which is extremely fast and powerful and requires virtually no servicing. We had to carry out extensive works inside the Depot to up-rate the electrical supply to deliver the power we needed for this to run alongside our mill-sized baler. It would be fair to say we couldn’t have done all the work we did in the year without this superb shredder, we had so much work in the last 12 months it couldn’t all have been shredded.

We also had our own HGV rated 4.5 tonne IVECO Daily built with integral tail-lift which you may have seen on many of the collection rounds. The fleet was further augmented with a Renault Traffic for lighter collections and a Mitsubishi 7.5 truck, with tail-lift for heavy load carrying, giving the business great versatility. Alas we had to say goodbye in November to our DAF compactor which has stood us in good stead over the last 5 years but now needed to be retired as it can’t handle our present volume of recyclable materials.

Further fitting out of the Depot included a new bin tipper which automated the 1100L bin tipping in-depot and saved lots of manual work, by dropping up to 600 kgs of paper into the hopper to be shredded.

We also had a busy year with attendances on 11 occasions with the University of Brighton’s ‘Profitnet Group’ based in Manor Royal, Crawley where we met business leaders from across our area and shared experiences, knowledge and ideas as to how we could improve our business.

We also managed to attend most of the Let’s Do Business events in Brighton, Eastbourne and Hastings, got to a meeting of Brighton’s Curry Club (more to come) and attended several meetings of the Burgess Hill Business Parks Association at members premises including Ockendon Manor, Ridgeview Vineyard, Action Press and others, we sent a small team up to the RWM Show at the NEC in Birmingham in September to talk recycling and joined in with the good and the great from the UK Shredding Industry, not to mention the Gatwick Diamond ‘Green Growth Platform’ Business Showcase and East Sussex Business Show.

So, how did we do with staff, well, all the staff who started the year, ended the year with us and we are so proud of what they have achieved. Considerable thanks to Mike, Jack, Harry, Tess, David, and not least Will, who came and worked with us for a few days in August, and so impressed us we changed our strategy so we could take him on board too. Will has been working with directly with customers since the beginning of December and will shortly be starting his HGV training in a few weeks.

We also managed to keep pretty much all our existing clients apart from a couple who moved out of our area. We also managed to get our ISO 9001/14001 systems re-accredited yet again, without any substantive issues, so we still carry the highest standard of accreditation in the industry yet again, which we have done continuously now for over 4 years, which is largely down to the sterling efforts of Mike Eaton who has run these systems.

Shredder Arrives with Control Unit