Just over a year ago Bristol Wood Recycling Project (BWRP) used its crowdfunding investment through Triodos to buy its premises in central Bristol and invest in its future. Since then the project has grown, developed and become award winning. We recently caught up with its founder and director Ben Moss to find out more and why he thinks their investors are amazing.
This past year has been particularly exciting for Bristol Wood Recycling Project (BWRP) after receiving its crowdfunding investment in February 2019. This enabled the company to buy its premises in central Bristol and invest in its future as a growing, innovative and sustainable social enterprise.
BWRP collects waste wood in and around Bristol and puts it to good use by making bespoke custom furniture, recycling it sustainably or it is used for heat reclamation at power stations. The company also operates a successful volunteer programme that enables social inclusion and learning.
We recently caught up with one of its founders Ben Moss who talked about what the impact has been post crowdfunding investment.
Image: Ben Moss, founder and director of Bristol Wood Recycling Project
“In essence there has been growth in everything that we do. Both the investment and the publicity which came with the crowdfunding effort has helped us to develop and grow. We have increased our capacity of wood reuse (for example through furniture making) from 35% to 40%, our workshop staffing employment has increased by over 20% and overall we have seen our total income increase by 15%.” said Ben.
Volunteers are very important to BWRP and they often come from a wide variety of backgrounds to gain a lot of experience and knowledge with some going on to become staff members or to gain employment elsewhere.
Ben explained: “We have also seen our volunteer capacity grow by 15% to just under 1,350 volunteer days in the year, which has been very empowering.”
BWRP has also taken on a new volunteer led project called ‘Shed Zone’ where marginal timber pieces heading for recycling are now made into beautiful and functional recycling or waste bin covers for householders.
The company is now also award-winning after being crowned ‘Breakthrough Co-operative of the Year 2019’ in the Co-op awards recognising its growth and achievements since the crowdfunding investment.
Hundreds of Triodos investors supported BWRP it its crowdfunding raise last year when Ben was asked what he thinks of the people who invested he simply said: “We think they are amazing and can’t thank them enough. By investing in us they have invested in the future of our company and our volunteers, as well as the future of wood recycling in Bristol.”