Malcolm was born into an RAF family on July 12th 1946 and his childhood years naturally saw much travelling, including attendance at sixteen different schools. Eventually he too joined the RAF as an aircraft engineer, and spent time working in Singapore and Bahrain amongst various other bases.
It was back in 1977 when he set up his oil recycling company, taking part of his own Christian name and combining it with part of his wife Mary’s to form the name “Malary”. In the early days it was basically Mary who took the phone orders while Malcolm drove his tanker to collect the waste oil, taking the consignments off to a recycler in Birmingham. With local garages forming a large part of Malary’s customer base, Malcolm saw the opportunity to add parts-cleaning machines and service to the company business. This proved not only a locally success, but opened up a more national customer base for both parts-cleaning and waste oil. Through these services the company grew considerably and counted over 3000 customers when the parts-cleaning side was finally sold off.
During these years, Malary added specialist recycling plant and many further services to its base in Cottenham, becoming the recycling partner of choice to a number of national waste contractors. Throughout this time Malcolm stuck to his business principles of straight dealing and good value, with most deals secured on a simple handshake and with subsequent business relationships frequently lasting for very many years.
The continuing strength of Malary also allowed Malcolm to indulge in his passion for stamp collecting from the Victorian and later Georgian era, amassing a highly impressive collection along the way. Friends will also remember his fondness for antiques and for aircraft paintings, along with his proud position of being the number one fan of the comic strip “The Perishers”.
When younger son Lewis took over as Managing Director in 2006, Malcolm remained as chairman continuing his strong interest and involvement in the company’s further expansion. Even frequent bouts of ill-health did not dim this commitment, and it was a source of pleasure and pride to him that he had established the strong and ongoing family business he had always intended. Family was a further passion for him, and one to which he devoted much time.
A highly popular figure in the industry, and one of its undoubted characters, Malcolm Walker leaves a legacy of great achievement both as a man and as a businessman and will be sorely missed by family and friends alike.
Lewis Walker summarised his most important lesson from his father thus:
“Dad’s core beliefs were to treat people well, work hard and keep things simple. He could never understand why people would over complicate tasks and end up miles away from where they should have been. I would always call him to ask for his advice and this will certainly be missed, especially for the reassuring peace of mind of a second opinion.”