Procurement and specification in Education

Wednesday, 1 April 2015  |  Lewis

Ribble Picnic Table and Benches in Recycled Plastic at Belmont School, BoltonA playground upgrade procurement decision with new furniture or equipment should look further than suitability and price. 

Maintenance of playground furniture is a major consideration as it can cost more in additional materials and labour than the original purchase price.

WRAP (Waste Resources Action Programme) is an independent body funded by all 4 UK Governments for the purpose developing strategies to promote recycling. They conducted a study comparing the cost of a boardwalk over a 25 year period in both wood and recycled plastic.

After 2 years it was assumed wood would require maintenance work and complete replacement after 7 years.

Besides the issue of what it looks like for much of that time, wood cost much more in the long run. 

When funds are tight and cutbacks are threatening, these questions are occupying the minds of procurement professionals everywhere and not just in the education market. 

In addition, ‘sustainable development’, ‘eco-friendly’, carbon neutral’, are subjects high on the agenda for specifiers, facilities managers, architects and politicians of course. 

By 2016 all refurbishment and new building projects in the UK will need to be carbon neutral.

Recycled plastic lasts forever and looks good forever and remains safe to use. 

Here at Kedel we manufacture products in 100% British sourced Recycled Plastic.

Since 2010 when we began trading we've been riding the crest of a wave with mushrooming interest in our recycled plastic outdoor play equipmentbenching and fencing products (See Housing Association Fencing Case study). 

Our turnover has been rising at a rate of 30% or more each year.

“We are finding there is a keen interest in recycled plastic because of its longevity - it will never rot, so it needs no maintenance,” says Dermot Walch, Kedel’s Managing Director.

 “Schools in particular appreciate this, because they find it easier to raise funds for products that are a good long term investment, as well as being eco-friendly.” ( See Case study at Belmont School near Bolton)

Children's Buddy Bench in Mahogany Recycled PlasticLewis Walch, one of Kedel's Directors had a great analogy, "Buying recycled plastic is like buying a car that will never ever need a service'" he said.

"Procurement that doesn't take into account the long term costs of maintenance is very incomplete", he added, "and the ecological benefits for the environment are obviously a bonus, and provide a practical example of useful products made possible by intelligent recycling."

The initial outlay can be recovered in as little as 2-5 years, as there no more than 30-40% difference between wood and recycled plastic in the initial cost of installation.

If you would like more information just browse this website or contact us via our contact formemail or 01282 861325.