The plant, which is based in Prees, is designed to divert one million mattresses away from landfill each year, accounting for 12.5 per cent of all mattresses that are disposed of annually.
Mattresses that would otherwise be going to landfill are stripped and all parts are recycled, including steel springs, fillings and the fabric covers. In landfill, a mattress takes around 100 years to decompose.
Paragon provided the funding in three parts. The initial deal, worth £1.9 million, funded the recycling plant, with two further instalments of a combined value of £250,000 financing a fire suppression system to meet new health and safety regulations and an improved dust extraction system for staff welfare.
The more recent two deals were provided through the Government-backed Recovery Loan Scheme (RLS), which aims to power the recovery of businesses impacted by the pandemic. Paragon was one of the first funders to be accredited by the British Business Bank to offer the scheme.
The recycling line was designed following 18 months of research and development around how to enable the successful separation of the flock from the steel, ensuring that the entirety of the mattress can be recycled or recovered. The plant is now able to process a mattress in around 30 seconds.
It is estimated that more than eight million mattresses are disposed of each year in the UK. Of that number, at least six million are still going to landfill, amounting to more than 200,000 tonnes and in addition to this a further 3 million bulky items amounting to more than 160,000 tonnes of bulky waste each year. Recycling facilities such as Textek offer a workable solution to the growing issue of disposing of mattresses in a sustainable manner.
New legislation is expected to be introduced in the future that will prevent mattresses and bulky waste from going to landfill, which will then increase the demand of mattress recycling services like those provided by Textek.
Steven Birch, director of Textek, said: “The Textek recycling plant provides a genuine answer to resolve the growing issue of large waste ending up in landfill. The development and design of the plant was incredibly complex, and it was important for me to get a funder on board that was able to provide a simple funding solution despite the scale of the project.
“Terry and the team at Paragon stripped it back to basics and came up with a straightforward approach. I have a long-standing relationship with Terry and the team and would not hesitate to work with Paragon again, which is why I approached Paragon for funding for further developments to the recycling plant.”
Terry Lloyd, head of construction for SME lending at Paragon Bank, said: “This was a considerable deal, with many moving parts as it was funded through stage payments due to the scale of the project.
“It’s been great to support Steve with the creation of such an innovative product, which addresses a genuine sustainability issue for the long-term and offers a solution that has the potential to transform the way large items are disposed of in landfill.”