In a spin for charity

BUILDING society staff came top of a charity cycling challenge as they competed against Teesside rivals.

The Hartlepool branch of Newcastle Building Society beat their colleagues from the company’s Middlesbrough base.

Staff in both locations had taken it in turn to show their pedal power and ride as far as they could on an exercise bike in their respective branches during an eight-hour working day.

And while the Middlesbrough team rode a very respectable distance of 112.59 miles, the Hartlepool team managed to do an additional 7.16 miles to take the honours on the day.

The real winners, however, were the two charities for which the teams were raising money, with donations from customers, friends and family reaching a total of just over £700.

The Hartlepool branch managed to raise £434 for the Hartlepool & District Hospice, whilst the Middlesbrough team brought in £267 for Zoe’s Place.

Senior staff members from the Newcastle’s head office visited both branches during the day to help out with the challenge, which forms part of the firm’s wider Cornerstone of the Community campaign – a programme that aims to provide support to a range of organisations within local communities through fundraising and volunteering.

Jean Fairweather, manager at Hartlepool’s York Road branch, said: “It was a long day for all of our cyclists, especially those of us who hadn’t done much riding lately, and no-one knew which team was going to win the challenge until right at the end. After putting so much effort in, we were very happy to find out that we’d just come out of top.

“Everyone who visited the branch on the day was very generous with both their encouragement and their donations, and both teams are thrilled with the amount of money we’ve raised for two fantastic local causes. In fact, money is still coming into the branch so we’re confident the total will continue to creep up.”