Community Champions

Celebrating charity work and good deeds in the Wiltshire and Swindon business community.

Not for drips… plumbing firm sponsors half marathon

Written by Peter Davison .

Debbie WilliamsFrom running taps to running 13 miles, a plumbing firm has lent its support to Chippenham half marathon.

John Williams Heating Services will be the official sponsor of the event, which takes places on Sunday, September 10 from 9.30am.

Co-owner Debbie Williams said: “We are thrilled to be involved with this important community event once again. The Chippenham Half Marathon has long been recognised as one of the best of its kind in the UK and this year will be no exception.”

The half marathon starts in Chippenham town centre and then goes through local villages including Stanley, the Tythertons and Langley Burrell finishing at Chippenham Sports Club. It’s also race 8 in the Wiltshire Road League for 2017.

The event’s official charity this year is The Rise Trust which manages children centres across North Wiltshire supporting families in need or crisis.

Since 2008, the event has raised over £70,000 for charity. Runners are also able to fundraise for charities of their own choice.

Hills kit out Calne FC for a seventh season

Written by Peter Davison .

The Hills Group has continued its longstanding relationship with Calne Town Football Club by renewing its sponsorship deal with the Toolstation Western League club for a seventh consecutive season.

Gary McKinnon, divisional director Hills Waste Solutions, joined the team for the official photo (pictured front row, centre), before their first home match of the season and commented: “Calne Town Football Club is on our doorstep and many of our employees live in the town so we are really pleased to continue our support. We wish the Lilywhites every success in the 2017/18 season.”

Calne Town FC chairman Garry Murphy added: “Hills’ sponsorship has been an integral part of this football club for seven years. We are a community club and we try to bring people together.

“We still need funds to improve and maintain facilities like the clubhouse roof, however Hills is part of the heartbeat of this club and long may that continue.”

Conference venue pledges £10,000 for Air Ambulance

Written by Peter Davison .

Keri MaundrellConference centre Wellington Barn has pledged to raise £10,000 for the Wiltshire Air Ambulance Air Base Appeal, after becoming the latest company to join the 100 Club.

Businesses that are part of the 100 Club pledge to raise £10,000 each, in a bid to raise £1.25m for Wiltshire Air Ambulance’s new base in just 12 months.

Wellington Barn, a conference and wedding venue near Calne, will be holding a range of activities starting with a team sponsored walk of the Ridgeway on Sunday, September 3.

A ball will be held on March 10, 2018 including an auction of promises & raffle.

Keri Maundrell, director of Wellington Barn, said: “I believe that the Wiltshire Air Ambulance is a much needed service and provides a vital fast response to the people of Wiltshire, especially where access is sometimes difficult.

“It is reassuring to know that such a highly trained response team are readily available to help saves lives in our community. As we have such a beautiful venue it seems a great fit to be able to use this space to raise funds.

“The new air base is a much needed resource, it will provide extra space and amenities for the crew which is so desperately needed and provide a focal point for increased fund raising.

“My team are fully on board and excited to start the activities we have planned, in fact, they have already committed to donating all their tips for the next 12 months to the appeal.”

Valerie Whistler, partnerships coordinator at Wiltshire Air Ambulance, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Wellington Barn have decided to join the 100 Club in order to raise funds for the Airbase Appeal.

“We are looking forward to working with Wellington Barn on some very exciting events. Our custom-built new airbase at Semington, near Melksham, will secure our future and enable us to continue our lifesaving service.

“We would like to thank everyone at Wellington Barn for choosing to support Wiltshire Air Ambulance and helping us to raise the funds we need to complete the building and equipping of our new airbase.”

Lawyer set to challenge fear of heights and wing walk for charity

Written by Peter Davison .

Christine BuntingA Swindon lawyer is set to challenge her fear of heights next week when she wing walks for children’s charity, Cerebra.

Christine Bunting, director of Hyphen Law, the specialist Court of Protection law firm based in Swindon, will climb onto the wing of a 1940s Boeing Stearman biplane on Friday.

In the experienced hands of a pilot from the famous Breitling Wing Walking team, she will be flown across the Gloucestershire countryside as she wing walks to raise much-needed funds for Cerebra, a charity devoted to helping children and young people with brain-related conditions.

Her pilot will be taking her through a pulse-pounding, terrifying set of aerobatic manoeuvres, including lower level fly pasts and thrilling, heart-stopping dives.

Dare devil Christine is not averse to overcoming her fear of heights. Two years ago, much to the amazement of her family, friends and colleagues, she skydived over Salisbury Plain in aid of Cerebra, raising over £3,500 for the charity.

Now she’s braving the skies once again and the prospect is somewhat daunting.

Christine said: “I wanted to do one last big fundraiser for Cerebra before I hit the ‘big 60’ which is rapidly approaching!

“I spent last winter wondering what I could do to top my sky dive because I wanted to do something that people would feel was really worthwhile to pay me to do.

“An idea began to brew and in a moment of, what I can only describe as complete and utter madness, I decided to sign up and perform a wing walk.

“Of course, now I’ve started telling people and raising money, I can’t quite back out and I have to go ahead with it!”

Wing walking has its roots in the early days of aviation, when daredevils wowed the crowds with stunning displays of boldness and bravery.

Christine will be securely strapped to the top wing of the authentic vintage biplane and will be joining the ranks of the select few members of the public who have thrown caution to the wind and taken to the skies, pushing their courage to the absolute limit.

Christine added: “I am truly terrified at the prospect of the wing walk but I am determined to do it as I know how much the charity can achieve with the funds that are raised.

“I have set myself a tall target of raising £5,000 for Cerebra and would be most grateful if anyone would like to make a contribution – no matter how small – to help the children and young people with brain conditions that Cerebra supports.”

To donate, visit Christine’s fundraising page at

Charity celebrates best ever sponsored walk fundraising total with Pebley Beach

Written by Peter Davison .

Dominic Threlfall of Pebley Beach with Ann Giles, Melanie Dix, Jo Vertannes, Tina Richards and Fiona Prinzi of Swindon Carers CentreA charity that supports around 4,000 unpaid carers in Swindon is celebrating its best-ever sponsored walk fundraising total, after receiving the backing of motor dealer Pebley Beach.

Dominic Threlfall, managing director of the Paddington Drive-based Suzuki and Hyundai franchise, pledged to match every pound raised by Swindon Carers Centre’s Walk A Mile In My Shoes sponsored walk up to £1,000.

Not only did his pledge spur on supporters to hit their £1,000 total, they exceeded it – raising almost £2,000. With Pebley Beach’s donation, the campaign total stands at just under £3,000.

Schools development officer Ann Giles, who received a giant cheque from Pebley Beach, said: “It’s a record total for our Walk A Mile In My Shoes event. Last year we raised £1,300 – the highest before this year’s event.”

Service development director Fiona Prinzi said: “The support of Pebley Beach means so much. We were jumping up and down with excitement when we found out!”

The money will be used to fund breaks and activities for some of the 4,000 unpaid carers supported by the charity, whose ages range from between five and 96.

For the younger carers, of whom there are around 900, it might mean a trip to the beach. For older carers it could be a trip to Bath, or a Christmas party. According to a recent survey of its registered carers by the charity, 100 percent reported that attending groups provided them with a break, and 98 percent made new friends.

According to the charity’s recently-published annual report, the charity saw a 200 percent increase in the number of carers who called their dedicated support line between 2015 and 2016. Over the same period, the number of carers registered with the charity increased by 12 percent to 3,950.

Dom said: “Swindon’s unpaid carers, young and old, do a fantastic job in supporting relatives who could not cope without them. We’re proud to be supporting Swindon Carers Centre.”

For more information about the work of Swindon Carers Centre visit


Swindon accountants are on target for clay shoot fundraiser

Written by Peter Davison .

Richard MathewsA Swindon accountancy firm has set its sights on fundraising by sponsoring an annual charity clay shoot.

Regulatory Accounting is backing the seventh annual clay shoot in aid of TWIGS, the town’s charity which supports people with mental health and addiction problems and, more recently, those with dementia.

The event is being staged at Barbury Shooting School on September 27, and TWIGS and Regulatory Accounting are inviting teams of four to take part.

To date, the clay shoots have raised £25,000 for TWIGS, which runs community gardens at Cheney Manor and is celebrating its 20th year.

Richard Mathews, managing director at Regulatory Accounting, based in Swindon’s historic railway quarter, said TWIGS was a great charity for the company to support.

“For the last 20 years, TWIGS has done some fantastic work in supporting people with mental health and addiction issues, through its community gardens scheme,” he said. “It’s a great example of what can be done in Swindon and we are delighted to sponsor this event.”

Chris Loveday, fundraiser with TWIGS, said: “We’re very grateful to Richard and Regulatory Accounting for supporting us. This is a big fundraiser and we hope to get 20 teams together. The funds will be used to support one of our newest projects, which is to help people with dementia.”

The shoot starts at 9.30am, and the entry fee is £480 per team of four, and included are guns, cartridges, bacon rolls and a buffet lunch.

For more information email Peter Barefoot of property consultants Alder King: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For more information about TWIGS, visit and for Regulatory Accounting visit

Hills helps the hedgehogs

Written by Peter Davison .

Kim Goodridge of Hedgehog Rescue and Robin Pearse of Hills Waste SolutionsA hedgehog rescue charity is £100 better off thanks to the diligent work of the Melksham Household Recycling Centre team, and a donation from The Hills Group charity committee.

Robin Pearse, site supervisor at Melksham HRC put aside any coins which were found during the daily site clean-up and after two years this totalled £24. The Hills Group charity committee decided to boost this amount up to £100 with its own £76 donation.

As Robin explained: “I’ve made my garden ‘hedgehog friendly’ so I am really pleased that Kim and her team will benefit from the donation. They give so much of their time to give orphaned and ill hedgehogs a second chance.”

A grateful Kim Goodridge from Hedgehog Rescue in Neston near Corsham said: “It is so kind of Hills and Robin to think of us and donate the £100.

“Mealworms are hedgehog’s favourite food, so the money will go towards that."

Kim added: "We are being inundated with young dehydrated hoglets during the hot weather. Providing water in a shallow dish can help them survive."

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