BMRA Annual Dinner 2023

BMRA Annual Dinner sees highest attendance as 570+ join award winners for yearly metals recycling get-together

Recyclers past and present were honoured at the 2023 BMRA Annual Dinner which saw one of the biggest crowds it has ever had at the Royal Lancaster Hotel, London.

Boasting over 300 members, the Association saw attendance at its ever-popular annual event soar, as more and more of the industry took the opportunity to get-together and celebrate all things scrap metal!

Following another well-attended networking event in the afternoon, James Kelly, BMRA’s CEO, opened proceedings to warn members about potential impediments to the export of scrap steel, and the lobbying BMRA Secretariat is doing, even though the domestic recycling market can more than meet the demand the UK steel industry would require.

He was followed by Susie Burrage, the BMRA President, who has added an OBE and President of BIR to her résumé since the last Annual Dinner. She talked about the "tsunami” of regulation imposed by the Government on the industry. She said: “The waves of legislation have not receded in 2023. On the contrary, they have grown bigger, stronger, and more encompassing”

She noted in detail the lobbying efforts of the BMRA Secretariat, and the waste classification projects the Association had led on.

There was plenty to cheer about as she noted the Young British Metals Recyclers highlights of the year alongside Carbon Action Committee’s projects, as well as her own achievements, becoming an OBE and being elected President of BIR.

As highlighted by leading industry publication, Recycling International, Susie concluded: ‘We have demonstrated time and again that metal recycling is not just an integral part of the circular economy but a vital and vibrant sector that plays a pivotal role in conserving resources and reducing environmental impact. The collective power of our industry is a force to be reckoned with, and it will carry us through these unchartered waters.’

The Lifetime Achievement Award sees recipients honoured for their role within the industry, often established within their own business and the wider metals industry.

The first recipient, Harry Kane of P Kane Metals Ltd, was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award posthumously. His daughter, Sharon, and son, Gavin, who collected the award, attended the dinner on the Kane family’s behalf. Described as ‘one of life’s great gentlemen’, Harry started with the family business in 1948, aged 8, and was a self-described ‘Scrapologist’ with a degree in ‘Scrapology’! You can read more about Harry in the next edition of Scrapbook. 

The second recipient, Colin Riddle, ran BW Riddle, taking over from his father. Formerly a smelter, a move to Lincolnshire saw the family become scrap metal merchants. Pioneers in shredding, the family also became plastics recyclers. Now a deserving ‘retirement’ awaits Colin as he works with his son Chris to develop Woolfox, a 185-acre members and residence club in Rutland. Read more about Colin in the next edition of Scrapbook.

A change from normal proceedings saw three Service to British Metals Recycling awards presented. Ron Hull of Ron Hull Group, David de Haas of London Metals Limited and Michael Ward of Ward received their accolades in recognition of their longevity and experience in the industry. You can read more about the recipients in Scrapbook.

In addition, the winner of the photography competition sponsored by Recycled Products Ltd was awarded to Olivier Vinkesteijn of Jansen Recycling Group BV.

Once again, the President’s charity for 2023, Alzheimer’s Society was incredibly well supported. The total is still to be confirmed, so keep your eyes peeled.

Huge thanks again to all those members that attended the evening, the sponsors, and those that supported the event by way of raffle donations and through the purchase of raffle tickets and bids on the silent auction prizes. You make the night what it is, and we could not do it without you – thank you!!!

Pictures from the night are now available to download (login required):

Please note that these are all high-resolution.