Hotel team goes the extra mile for children’s charities

Tees Business Digital Media Pack

Thistle Hotel Cyclists

Caring workers at Thistle Hotel Middlesbrough are used to going the extra mile for guests, so when they were asked to go 120 miles for charity they agreed to saddle up.

Ten of them rode 120 miles from Middlesbrough to Manchester to raise money for five national children’s charities.

Their efforts have now won them a Community Award from the North East Hotels Association – the largest group of its kind in the UK.

Damon Roberts, general manager, was one of those who took part.

He said: “It was an exhilarating experience and the 10 members of the team who completed the challenge did amazingly well.

“Several of us were novice riders – I hadn’t been on a bike for more than 20 years – but knowing we were helping support the children’s charities meant every aching muscle and blister was worth it.

“We took our inspiration from the three-day cycle race the Tour de Yorkshire, although we didn’t quite manage to achieve the speeds they did.”

The experience had a health-changing effect on dad-of-two Damon – he’s now taken up the sport and regularly cycles up to 60 miles a week to keep fit.

The others taking part were Vicki Jackson, sales manager, Jon Templeman, bar supervisor, Michael Bird, finance assistance, Richard Coates, regional health club manager, Richard Hardy, head chef, Nicolas Nasser, operations manager, Phil Stoneman, health club manager, Richard Chinnery, kitchen assistant and Sylvester Scallen, commis chef.

The cycle challenge is just one of a number of fundraisers carried out by the team at Thistle Hotel Middlesbrough, which this year celebrates its 15th anniversary.

In recent months the team has handed over more than £1,000 to Butterwick Hospice, £400 to children’s charity Daisy Chain, regularly donates to a local food bank, and raised funds for Comic Relief.

The Middlesbrough to Manchester ‘tour’ was part of Lite@Nite – the name given to the fundraising carried out by those employed by glh, Thistle Hotel Middlesbrough’s parent company.

Lite@Nite called on glh employees to take part in a 1,400 mile relay that started in Inverness and continued down the country to London. Teams swam, walked, ran and cycled from hotel to hotel raising money as they went.

Thistle Hotel Middlesbrough had the second longest distance to cover – 120 miles – and the team raised more than £700.

Since it launched Lite@Nite has raised more than £66,000 for five children’s charities – British Triathlon Foundation Trust, Barnardo’s, Kids Company, The Children’s Society, and Kidscape.

Guests at Thistle Hotel Middlesbrough and other glh hotels are invited to add £1 to their bill to help boost the fund further.

• Pictured (above): Vicki Jackson, sales manager at Thistle Hotel Middlesbrough, holding the North East Hotels Association Community Award with fellow fundraisers (L-R) Richard Coates, regional health club manager, Nicolas Nasser, operations manager, Jon Templeman, bar supervisor, Phil Stoneman, health club manager, Michael Bird, finance assistance, Damon Roberts, general manager, and Richard Hardy, head chef.


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