Ward’s £1.5 million investment maximises metal processing capacity

Derbyshire-based metal and waste recycling specialist, Ward, has this month completed an upgrade at its metal processing facility at Ilkeston, which began in September 2019 with the installation of a new Metso pre-shredder.

The new EtaRIP 250 pre-shredder was purchased in early 2019 from Metso and is now fully operational, following significant groundworks and infrastructure improvements at a cost of over £1.5 million.

Donald Ward, Operations Director at Ward said: “Our metal recycling business has seen a big increase in demand in the last couple of years, particularly with exports from our deep-sea dock at Immingham, which meant we needed to invest in processing the increased tonnage more quickly and efficiently. With the new pre-shredder, we are now pre-processing vehicles before they go into the main shredder. This minimises risk from any explosions from gas bottles hidden in vehicles, as well as preventing damage to our core machinery, reducing down time and saving energy.”

From September 2019, Ward has monitored the new equipment and, even during the current period of disruption caused by the Coronavirus, is now able to report on the benefit since the installation was commissioned.

Even though the new kit is working in addition to the original large metal shredding plant, processing essential waste to keep supply chains running, there has been no real increase in the energy consumption. Ward has also found there are now few energy spikes meaning the pre-shredding equipment is improving the overall energy usage on its Ilkeston site.

Damage caused to machinery in the main shredding plant by processing very large pieces of metal has also reduced thanks to the pre-shredder, reducing maintenance downtime. Ward is pleased to report a significant reduction in controlled explosions in the main shredder, which are now almost non-existent.

“Since commissioning Ward’s main shredder, a Metso Lindemann ZZ 225 x 260 – 3000HP, in 2008, we’ve maintained a good relationship,” said Chris Tressler, UK Country Manager, Metso Metal Recycling. “To help reduce explosions, shredder damage and premature wear due to unshreddables, the EtaRip pre-shredder was the logical solution that has also improved their throughput, as well as further strengthened our relationship.”

Donald Ward added: “Legislation around metal shredding sites is constantly changing as standards continually improve across the UK and Europe. This installation enables us to be at the forefront of recycling within the metal industry and demonstrate best available techniques when processing cars and other large metal items.”

As well as the investment in the new pre-shredder and associated groundworks, during 2019 Ward also purchased a number of new Liebherr material handlers and several Sennebogen cranes to process metals, moving them around sites and feeding the specialised machine. Across its Derbyshire and Immingham sites, Ward is now able to process and recycle close to half a million tonnes of ferrous and non-ferrous scrap metal of all grades for sale within the UK and to export overseas, per year.

The multi-award winning, independent fourth generation family business has invested significantly over the last two years with a brand new purpose built site at Chesterfield, a complete office renovation at Ilkeston of Donald Ward House, opening a dedicated deep sea dock at Immingham for further expansion of its metal recycling capabilities, plus launching a new textile recycling service WARDRobe. It also installed a new IT infrastructure which enabled the team to seamlessly move its office functions to work from home during the period of lockdown.