Company News

Russells team takes a hike

Staff from Lochmaben-based Russell Roof Tiles factory are taking on a walking challenge in a bid to raise £5,000 for charity.

Teams made up of 40 staff from its Scottish and English factories are creating their own version of the famous battle of Bannockburn, racing to a central point on Hadrian’s Wall. The wall was the north-west frontier of the Roman empire for nearly 300 years and runs for a total of 73 miles.

On October 6 and 7, a team from its Burton-on-Trent site will start at Wallsend (to the east) and the Lochmaben team will start at Bowness (to the west) and will race each other across the length of Hadrian’s Wall in a bid to see who gets to the central point, The Twice Brewed Inn, first.

The aim is to raise much needed cash for Russells’ nominated charities for this year: Dumfries & Galloway Blood Bikes (D&GBB) and Shropshire, Staffordshire & Cheshire Blood Bikes (SSBB). Last year, generous staff at the company raised an impressive £24,000 for these charities enabling each Blood Bikes charity to buy a much-needed new motorbike. Both are volunteer-led charities who rely purely on donations to run its service by providing lifesaving medical supplies across NHS foundations with the transportation of vital blood products, organs for transplant and other life-critical supplies.

Team captains for the Scottish team are regional sales director, Alan Young and operations director, Bruce Laidlaw. Captains of the English team from Burton are area sales manager, Michael Palmer and Gary Gough, finance manager. None of the staff have walked Hadrian’s Wall before.

Alan Young, regional sales director at Russell Roof Tiles, commented: “This is a real challenge for our team. We’re not seasoned walkers but we’re all training hard to make sure we’re successful and raise as much money as possible for these great causes. Of course, we’ll also be pleased if we’re the winning side – just like in the battle of Bannockburn!”

Over the past 18 months RusseIls’ fundraising activities have included a sponsored weight loss, twin peaks challenge, family fun day, charity dancing competition, football matches, a charity golf day and a version of “superstars”.

Both charities operate 24/7, relying solely on volunteers’ fundraising efforts and does not receive any government or local authority finance. Dave Hook, chairman of DGBB, said: “We’re delighted with the ongoing support of Russells staff, their cash allows us to improve crucial services for the health and wellbeing of the people of Dumfries and Galloway.”

Andrew Hayward, managing director at Russell Roof Tiles, added: “All of our staff have worked incredibly hard for the charities and we are delighted that so many volunteers have come forward to take part in this challenge. May the best team win.”

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