Middlesbrough firm is a glass act

Please Credit Picture:Keith Taylor

Please Credit Picture:Keith Taylor

A glass recycling company is celebrating a jump in sales for the first four months of 2015 for its specialist recycled glass products.

WRL Glass Media, part of Middlesbrough-based Ward Recycling, has seen a sales increase of 81% this year after delivering more than 7,000 tonnes of processed glass between January and April, which is used for a range of applications including shot blasting and water filtration.

As a result of this growth and increasing demand for its products, the company is creating four new plant operations roles and implementing a four-day-on, four-day-off rota to enable 24-hour operations.

Further jobs are expected to be created later this year to provide additional administrative support for the business.

The growth is part of WRL Glass Media’s strategy to establish itself as the premier supplier of recycled glass media in the UK and Europe.

It has increased its market share for its Shot Blasting Products with customers swapping from grit or plastic products to environmentally-friendly recycled glass for the first time.

The company’s more refined processed glass, which is used as a cost-effective and cleaner replacement to silica sand in swimming pool filtration systems, is enjoying strong export growth with more than 30 percent of its products sold to customers in countries including Spain, Greece, Cyprus, France and Iceland.

The ability to meet this substantial growth in sales has been made possible by WRL Glass Media’s investment in its facilities in South Bank, Middlesbrough.

Its 32,000 sq ft Glass Beneficiation Plant, located adjacent to Ward Recycling’s main household recycling facility, is part of a £3.2m investment that was supported by a £500,000 grant from Let’s Grow – a £30m Regional Growth Fund programme operated in partnership with Trinity Mirror Group, BE Group and UNW LLP.

To meet demand, the company has already built an additional 5,000 sq ft, £450,000 glass clean-up extension, which was opened by the former Business Secretary Vince Cable earlier this year.

WRL Glass Media has also worked with Teesside University to achieve the European recognised Reg 31 (DWI) and PAS 102 quality accreditations as well as gaining £59,000 in R&D tax credits, which has been reinvested to demonstrate its commitment to producing quality and environmentally friendly products.

Manager Gareth Godwin said: “We have invested in our facilities, accreditations and people to improve and maintain quality alongside creating the ability to scale up our operations, which is enabling us to meet rising demand.

“We are particularly proud of our growth in export markets where our highly refined glass product is becoming increasingly popular as a safe and environmentally friendly media for the filtration of swimming pool water.”


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