Gloucester City Council, a shareholder in environmental services company Ubico, recently gave its kerbside recycling fleet a vinyl wrapping makeover. Its 14 six-year-old recycling vehicles were given a new lease of life using high quality vinyl and updated graphics, and now look good as new.

The wrapping experts Creative Vehicle Wrapping (CVW) were brought in to do the job. They removed the existing wrapping from all the compartments and re-wrapped the vehicles with a completely new design.

'The vehicles are in good condition from an operational point of view, but they were looking very tired and carried branding from the previous contractor,’ said Ian Bourton, head of Fleet Operations, Ubico Ltd. 'CVW has done a great job in bringing them back to life.’

Avery Specialist Installers CVW do everything in house with a design team, state of the art print studio and immaculate climatised premises. As well as recycling vehicles, they also wrap other commercial vehicles, such as vans, tippers, and concrete mixers. They recently wrapped 21 brand new, high specification, automatic Ford Transit vans for municipal equipment and vehicle specialist Bucher Municipal.

Wrapping can bring a whole host of benefits other than simply improving your vehicles’ image. It’s a cost-effective way to advertise. Studies have shown that wrapped vehicles, travelling in major cities, can reach audiences of over 65,000 per day. Vehicles travelling in local suburban areas, meanwhile, can generate audiences of over 30,000 per day.

In the words of CVW director Jonathan Thomas refuse collection vehicles (RCV) are effectively ‘the world’s slowest moving billboards’.

CVW has worked with countless local authorities to help them get their message out. Newark and Sherwood District Council, for example, brought in CVW to wrap a Dennis Elite Olympus 27 32t RCV as part of their campaign against fly tipping and littering. Once they were done, residents in the area could hardly miss the message: ‘USING A REGISTERED WASTE CARRIER, PERFECTLY FINE. ILLEGAL FLY TIPPING, MASSIVE FINE’, was emblazoned across the truck.

Andrew Kirk, business manager, Environmental Services, Newark and Sherwood District Council: ‘Fly tipping is a huge problem for us as it is in most areas around the country. We are a very rural district so there are lots of country lanes and laybys where people can leave litter. We are running a big campaign to raise awareness and wrapping one of our refuse trucks is a very cost-effective way to spread the message far and wide. The sheer scale and size mean that people really notice it.

‘The vehicle looks great and we’ve had great feedback so far. CVW helped to make sure the design was perfect for the vehicle and the quality of the vinyl literally shines through.’

Sustainability is another message that CVW’s local authority customers are keen to get across to their residents. BCP Council, for example, is using its new fleet of refuse vehicles as billboards to help remind residents what they can recycle from around their homes.

Mark Parsons, fleet manager, BCP Council: ‘These refuse vehicles will be seen regularly by local people, so it makes sense to use them as a reminder about the wide range of recycling streams we can collect from their homes.

‘We are grateful to CVW for assisting us with the design and the quality of wrapping is superb. The vehicles will not only attract attention; apparently people are more likely to remember messages they read on wrapped vehicles, which is great.’

There are of course more reasons to turn to wrapping than advertising. It also helps protect the paint on the vehicle, for example. As Mr Thomas explains, ‘You’ll take the vinyl off the vehicle and it will be absolutely immaculate under there. In five or 10 years that paint will be immaculate.’

Mr Bourton of Ubico is certainly happy with his spruced up vehicles. ‘The quality of vinyl and the clarity of the images and graphics is first class, and the in-house design expertise at CVW is excellent. We are delighted with the results.'

This article first appeared in the summer issue of LAPV. To subscribe for free click here.