On Wednesday 5th October, we attended the National Textiles Recycling Conference at the QEII Centre, hosted by Letsrecycle.com.

A great line up of speakers was on the agenda for the day, including Alan Wheeler, Director of the Textile Recycling Association, Michael Lomotey of Clothes Aid, Jane Gardner of Carpet Recycling UK, Catarina Midby of H&M, Dr Enir Young of Bangor University and many more.....

Presentations in the morning addressed global issues for the UK textile recycling market, including the potential East African Community ban on imports of used textiles and Extended Producer Responsibility.  Perspectives were given on challenges faced by local authorities, how clothing can be made to last longer and a case study on the sustainability work being carried out by H&M.

The afternoon turned towards the situations of carpet and mattress recycling, where Oakdene Hollins' recent report for the National Bed Federation was given credit (thanks go to Lee Foulkes).  The conference ended with a debate around the challenges being faced by the market and the best ways these can be overcome.

A take-away message of the workshop was that closer collaboration is key to the continued success of the industry as uncertain times are faced head on together.

All in all it was a great day, hearing about the market from all sides and catching up with friends who have long been associated with Oakdene Hollins, and more recently Uniform Reuse.