Glass Focus 2019

Glass Focus 2019

Glass Focus 2019 – supported by Glass Futures – took place on Thursday 21 November 2019.

The event, a daytime conference followed by the annual Glass Focus awards, was held in Sheffield at the Mercure St Paul’s Hotel. It was a great chance to get face-to-face with people from across the glass industry and show what we all can do – at individual, company and industry level. We're very grateful to all who helped make this event possible – especially our sponsors.

The winners

The awards themselves covered areas including product design, sustainability, health and safety, workforce development and more.

British Glass’ Company of the Year

Allied Glass

Allied Glass has shown excellence across the year in terms of its own business performance while also representing and strengthening the glass sector as a whole.

Their investment in a new decoration line and office space has allowed them to continue to manufacture high-quality, innovative designs for a number of customers in the spirits sector.

The Knottingley-based business has also strengthened their ties with their local area through a number of community initiatives, including refurbishing the library of a school, and has been actively engaged with British Glass committees making them a worthy winner.

Dave Dalton presents Allied Glass with the award for Company of the year

Sponsored by:
British Glass

British Glass

Apprentice of the Year

Joe Boyd of Saint-Gobain Glass UK

Saint-Gobain UK’s Joe Boyd is nearing the end of his apprenticeship as a Control and Instrumentation Engineer, which has seen him work on all three production lines on automation investigations, adaptations and new capability design at the Eggborough site.

Joe has been working closely with the Industry 4.0 team and his value to the company has already been demonstrated saving the business money with programmes he has been responsible for and implemented.

The judges were very impressed with 21-year-old Joe’s work so far which includes working on international projects in and outside of Europe as well as being trusted to implement a £20k from start to finish.

Joe Boyd of Saint-Gobain is presented with the award for Apprentice of the year

Sponsored by:
Worshipful Company of Glass Sellers of London

Strengthening Business through People

O-I’s ‘Career Ready’ community programme

Volunteers at O-I’s site in Alloa have created a talent pipeline alongside UK charity Career Ready for youngsters in the local area to join the glass industry which goes from mentoring school students to internships, an apprentice scheme and, finally, permanent employment.

The partnership has already seen two new employees begin their careers at the Alloa glass plant, learning from experienced and skilled practitioners.

Judges were impressed with the programme building a sense of community in the local area and encouraging people to come into the glass industry by providing guidance and mentoring.

Glass Futures present O-I Glass with the award for Strengthening business through people

Sponsored by:
Glass Futures

Glass Futures logo

Sustainable Practice

Saint-Gobain Glass UK with their ‘Glass Forever’ post-consumer flat glass recovery and recycling initiative

Sustainability is key to the glass industry and this year; Saint-Gobain UK took major steps to deliver on their commitment for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 by extending their ‘Glass Forever’ programme to include post-consumer glass.

Currently most glass from old windows ends up in landfill due to difficulty in extracting, collecting and processing the glass however, Saint-Gobain has introduced a number of new innovations, including a new processing machine, to take old flat glass and re-manufacture it into high-performance coated glass.

The initiative has helped increase cullet ratio at the company’s Eggborough plant to above 40%.

Judges hailed Saint-Gobain for not waiting for legislation to implement the initiative and the global impact that the CO2 reduction from the programme will have.

Saint-Gobain are presented with the Sustainable practice award.

Sponsored by:
AFT

Health and Safety Action

Joint winners - Encirc and Socabelec for their hot end Swabbing Robots

For the Health and Safety Action award the judges agreed that the Swabbing Robots, manufactured by Socabelec in Belgium, and installed by Encirc on nine of their lines at their plant in Cheshire, were “head and shoulders above everything else,” and couldn’t sperate the two entries.

The autonomous robots swab the moulds on the I.S. machine while it is still in operation by spraying them with oil at 20-minute intervals.

This in turn eliminates the danger to Encirc employees, the risk of human error and the need to turn off the machines to manually swab the moulds which in turn has improved productivity and health and safety at the company.

Encirc and Socabelec are joint winners of the Health and safety action award.

Sponsored by:
Arco Safety

Innovative Solution

Encric’s state of the art virtual reality training room

Intensive training is key for hot-end workers in the glass industry and Encirc have found a unique way to improve the training they give to their staff in a safe environment, without an impact on production, by installing a virtual reality training room at their site in Elton, Cheshire.

Featuring a fully functional three-section glass forming I.S machine, the state of the art facility enables the company to effectively train new staff in hazardous scenarios, such as the outbreak of a fire in the factory, safely and give a greater understanding of the machines they’ll be working with which wouldn’t be otherwise possible on a machine that is in production. 

As a result, it’s expected that the use of VR will cut down the length of training a new recruit by one week.

The judges praised the entry as a “step into the future of glass making” that will attract young people to come into the glass industry.

Encirc being presented with the award for Innovative solution

Sponsored by:
Limab UK

Design of the Year – Flat

Saint-Gobain Glass UK for their work on the Macallan Distillery and visitor centre

Saint-Gobain Glass UK’s work on the beautifully engineered Macallan Distillery and visitor centre saw them become the inaugural winners of this category.

The company created a striking façade for the building from 59mm thick double-glazed units of laminated heat strengthened safety glass and the design had to take into account the potential of natural movement from one of the most complicated timber roof structures in the world.

Solar control was also of high importance in the project, which remained sensitive to its natural surroundings, and impressed our judges as a “great example of using glass at its manufacturing limit to solve a problem.”

Saint-Gobain being presented with the award for Design of the year - flat

Sponsored by:
Glass Technology Services

Design of the Year – Container

The Ardagh Group with their Glenfiddich whisky bottle

Crafting a new design for Glenfiddich’s 12 and 15-year-old single malt whiskies, the Ardagh Group were tasked with emphasising the iconic brands unique heritage and origins in a new bottle. 
The resulting design features a distinct V groove on the front, shoulder embossing, a new label platform on the neck and a seam-free labelling area while Ardagh also overcame several challenges in the manufacturing process to create the bottle. 
While acknowledging that this category was one of the most difficult to pick a winner in, the judges were impressed with the “classy, authentic and simple but very elegant design which set it apart from the rest of the entries in this category.”
 

Ardagh is presented with the award for Design of the year - Container

Sponsored by:
The Packaging Collective

The Packaging Collective